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The Moon and Planets Among the Incas and Other Pre-Hispanic Andean Peoples  

Mariusz Ziółkowski

Online publication date:
Aug 2020
Although the Inca state (ca. 1200–1572 ce) was called the Empire of the Sun, the Moon was, in some respects, an equally important divinity in the official state cult. The regulatory ... More

The Moon and Planets in Ancient Mesopotamia  

Mathieu Ossendrijver

Online publication date:
Jul 2020
In ancient Mesopotamia, all five planets visible to the naked eye were known and studied, along with the Moon, the Sun, the stars, and other celestial phenomena. In all Mesopotamian sources ... More

The Moon and Planets in Indigenous California  

E.C. Krupp

Online publication date:
Apr 2019
Anthropologists distinguish the U.S. State of California as a primary zone of prehistoric and tribal North America—it was one of the most linguistically and cultural diverse regions on ... More

Noble Gases  

Mario Trieloff

Online publication date:
Sep 2018
Oxford Research Encyclopedia:
Although the second most abundant element in the cosmos is helium, noble gases are also called rare gases. The reason is that they are not abundant on terrestrial planets like the Earth, ... More

Origins of Life: Open Questions and Debates  

André Brack

Online publication date:
Oct 2017
Oxford Research Encyclopedia:
Astrobiology
Stanley Miller demonstrated in 1953 that it was possible to form amino acids from methane, ammonia, and hydrogen in water, thus launching the ambitious hope that chemists would be able to ... More

The Outer Space Treaty  

Christopher Daniel Johnson

Online publication date:
Jan 2018
Oxford Research Encyclopedia:
Space Law
Negotiated at the United Nations and in force since 1967, the Outer Space Treaty has been ratified by over 100 countries and is the most important and foundational source of space law. The ... More

Petrology and Geochemistry of Mercury  

Shoshana Z. Weider

Online publication date:
Jul 2019
Oxford Research Encyclopedia:
Having knowledge of a terrestrial planet’s chemistry is fundamental to understanding the origin and composition of its rocks. Until recently, however, the geochemistry of Mercury—the Solar ... More

Planetary Magnetic Fields and Dynamos  

Ulrich R. Christensen

Online publication date:
Oct 2019
Since 1973 space missions carrying vector magnetometers have shown that most, but not all, solar system planets have a global magnetic field of internal origin. They have also revealed a ... More

Planet Formation  

Morris Podolak

Online publication date:
Apr 2018
Oxford Research Encyclopedia:
Planet Formation
Modern observational techniques are still not powerful enough to directly view planet formation, and so it is necessary to rely on theory. However, observations do give two important clues ... More

The Planets in Aboriginal Australia  

Duane W. Hamacher and Kirsten Banks

Online publication date:
Feb 2019
Studies in Australian Indigenous astronomical knowledge reveal few accounts of the visible planets in the sky. However, what information we do have tells us that Aboriginal people are close ... More

Planets in Inuit Astronomy  

John MacDonald

Online publication date:
Feb 2018
Inuit are an indigenous people traditionally inhabiting the Arctic and sub-Arctic regions of Greenland, Canada, Alaska, and parts of Russia’s Chukchi Peninsula. Across this vast region, ... More

The Pluto−Charon System  

Will Grundy

Online publication date:
Jul 2019
Pluto orbits the Sun at a mean distance of 39.5 AU (astronomical units; 1 AU is the mean distance between the Earth and the Sun), with an orbital period of 248 Earth years. Its orbit is ... More

Public Impact of Planetary Science  

Linda Billings

Online publication date:
Jan 2020
Oxford Research Encyclopedia:
Planetary Science Policy and Planning
The public impact of planetary science, or, alternatively, the public value of planetary science, is poorly understood, as little research has been published on the subject. Public impact ... More

Registration Convention  

Anja Nakarada Pečujlić

Online publication date:
Mar 2020
Oxford Research Encyclopedia:
Planetary Science Policy and Planning, Space Law
The adoption and entering into force of the 1975 Convention on Registration of Objects Launched into Outer Space (also known as the Registration Convention) was another achievement in ... More

Registration of Space Objects  

Bernhard Schmidt-Tedd and Alexander Soucek

Online publication date:
Jun 2020
Oxford Research Encyclopedia:
Space Law
Space objects are subject to registration in order to allocate “jurisdiction and control” over those objects in the sovereign-free environment of outer space. This approach is similar to ... More

Solar Wind and Terrestrial Planets  

Edik Dubinin, Janet G. Luhmann, and James A. Slavin

Online publication date:
Jun 2020
Knowledge about the solar wind interactions of Venus, Mars, and Mercury is rapidly expanding. While the Earth is also a terrestrial planet, it has been studied much more extensively and in ... More

Space and Planetary Resources  

Angel Abbud-Madrid

Oxford Research Encyclopedia:
Planetary Science Policy and Planning
This is an advance summary of a forthcoming article in the Oxford Research Encyclopedia of Planetary Science. Please check back later for the full article. ... More

Space Commercialization and the Development of Space Law  

Yun Zhao

Online publication date:
Jul 2018
Oxford Research Encyclopedia:
Planetary Science Policy and Planning, Space Law
Shortly after the launch of the first manmade satellite in 1957, the United Nations (UN) took the lead in formulating international rules governing space activities. The five international ... More

Space Governance  

Rajeswari Pillai Rajagopalan

Online publication date:
Aug 2018
Oxford Research Encyclopedia:
Planetary Science Policy and Planning, Space Law
Outer space is once again facing renewed competition. Unlike in the earlier decades of space exploration when there were two or three spacefaring powers, by the turn of the 21st century, ... More

Space Law and China  

Fabio Tronchetti

Online publication date:
Feb 2019
Oxford Research Encyclopedia:
Space Law
China has made remarkable achievements in the space sector and has become one of the most relevant players in the outer space domain. Highlights of this process have been the deployment in ... More

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