Graduate School

Atmospheric Physics

This course is part of the programme:
Physics (Third Level)

Objectives and competences

The aim of this course is to introduce the students the basic physical processes in the atmosphere and their impact on weather and climate phenomena.



Content (Syllabus outline)

The contents of the course includes an overview of basic chapters of Atmospheric Physics:

  • Composition and Structure of Atmosphere

  • Atmospheric Thermodynamics

    - Thermodynamic laws

    - Water Vapour in the Air

    - Static Stability

  • Cloud Mycrophysics

    - Condensation Nuclei

    - Growth of Clouds and Precipitation

    - Thunderstorm Electrification

  • Radiative Transfer

    - The Spectrum of Radiation

    - Blackbody Radiation

    - Scattering, Absorption and Emission

    - Radiative Transfer in the Atmosphere

    - Radiation Balance at the Top of Atm.

  • Atmospheric Dynamics

    - Kinematics of Air Flow

    - Dynamics of Air Flow

    - Primitive Equations

    - Atmospheric Circulation

  • Intended learning outcomes

    Students will apply their basic knowledge in thermodynamics, radiation and dynamics to the physical properties of the atmosphere and their impact on weather and climate.


    • J. M. Wallace & P. V. Hobbs, Atmospheric Science – An Introductury Survey (Chapters 1, 3, 4, 6, 7), Elsevier / Academic Press, 2nd edition

    Additional reading

    • D. G. Andrewa, 2000. Introduction to Atmospheric Physics (Chapters 1, 2, 3, 4, 5), Cambridge University Press, 1st edition
    • J. Houghton, 2002. The Physics of Atmospheres (Chapters, 1, 2, 3, 4, 6, 7, 8, 10), Cambridge University Press, 1st edition
    • M. L. Salby, 1996. Fundamentals of Atmospheric Physics (All Chapters), Elsevier / Academic Press, 1st edition


    Grading of written seminar (50), oral exam (50)

    Lecturer's references

    Associate professor of Meteorology at the University of Nova Gorica.


    University course code: 3FIi19

    Year of study: 1


    ECTS: 9


    • Lectures: 30 hours
    • Exercises: 30 hours
    • Individual work: 210 hours

    Course type: general elective

    Languages: english

    Learning and teaching methods:
    lectures, seminars, practicals, individual hours with the lecturer