Outline of space science

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A laser-guided observation of the Milky Way Galaxy at the Paranal Observatory in Chile in 2010

The following outline is provided as an overview and topical guide to space science:

Space science – field that encompasses all of the scientific disciplines that involve space exploration and study natural phenomena and physical bodies occurring in outer space, such as space medicine and astrobiology.[1][2]

Branches of space sciences[edit]


The diversity found in the different types and scales of astronomical objects make the field of study increasingly specialized.
A proposed timeline of the origin of space, from physical cosmology

See astronomical object for a list of specific types of entities which scientists study. See Earth's location in the universe for an orientation.

  • Interdisciplinary studies of astronomy:
    • Astrobiology – studies the advent and evolution of biological systems in the universe.
    • Space biology – studies to build a better understanding of how spaceflight affects living systems in spacecraft, or in ground-based experiments that mimic aspects of spaceflight[4]
    • Space chemistry – Reactions of elements to form more complex compounds, such as amino acids, are key to the study of chemistry in space.[5]
      • Astrobotany – Sub-discipline of botany that is the study of plants in space environments.
    • Archaeoastronomy – studies ancient or traditional astronomies in their cultural context, utilizing archaeological and anthropological evidence.
    • Space archaeology – the study of human artifacts in outer space
    • Forensic astronomy – the use of astronomy, the scientific study of celestial objects, to determine the appearance of the sky at specific times in the past.


Astronaut Piers Sellers during the third spacewalk of STS-121, a demonstration of orbiter heat shield repair techniques

The science and engineering of spacefaring and spaceflight, a subset of Aerospace engineering (which includes atmospheric flight)

See also[edit]


  1. ^ "Space science – Define Space science", Dictionary.com
  2. ^ "Space science – Definition of space science", Free Online Dictionary, Thesaurus and Encyclopedia
  3. ^ "astrophysics". Merriam-Webster, Incorporated. Retrieved 2011-05-22.
  4. ^ "Space Biology Program | Science Mission Directorate".
  5. ^ "Space chemistry | Science & Technology in Action".

External links[edit]