What are the Space Sciences?

Direct Knowlege Contributor Taylor Bauer
  • By Taylor Bauer, Technical Writer & Digital Marketing Expert
  • Taylor is a writer and SEO manager with a B.S. in Political Communication from Illinois State University. He also received his M.S. in Communications from Illinois State. His background comes from journalism, working at an NPR member station for three years before transitioning to blogging and search engine marketing. He lives in Illinois with his wife and two Toy Australian Sheppards.

About Space Sciences

Humans are endlessly amazed by space. From planets and stars to the possibility of life outside of Earth, you and I ponder endless questions about what exists outside of Earth. With a space sciences degree, many jobs work to develop a definition of what indeed exists up above us.

Space sciences is a field of study focused on space exploration and the naturally occurring phenomenon inside our solar system and beyond. The subject uses elements of mathematics, physics, and engineering to help connect the mysteries of space to humans on Earth. Through expensive space sciences projects and expeditions, space experts help to determine an exact definition for the magic that lies outside our planet.

To learn more about this subject, you and I are going to go over types of space studies. We will also talk about articles and books on the matter. First, let’s break down the different subjects and definitions in the field of space sciences.

Articles in the Space Sciences

While not a new subject, the definition of space science has gone through some drastic changes recently (well, in the last century or so at least). It now involves not just looking into space from the comfort of Earth, but also sending out probes and even people. Whether observational, theoretical, or practical in application, space science jobs are expanding in countless ways. The space sciences articles in this category can help you stay up to date on new developments. They also help you learn about past discoveries and the methods behind modern space science.

Branches of Space Science

The definition of space science is so vast that it includes many areas covering dozens of specialties. The following are some broad branches that cover the more significant parts of the field.

Astronomy

Humans have been pondering the stars for most of history. This curiosity makes astronomy one of the oldest natural sciences in the world. It started as a means to create calendars for ancient civilizations or navigate the seas by way of the stars. It has now grown to a vast field that consists of astrophysics, stellar astronomy, galactic astronomy, and more. The branch of observational astronomy uses observatories, telescopes, probes, and rovers to gather data from space for analysis. The general area, on the other hand, uses scientific principles to create models of objects and phenomena outside of Earth. Space sciences articles and degrees on this topic often focus on the bigger picture of outer space.

Planetary Science

Many of the branches, degrees, and jobs within space science are very interdisciplinary. Planetary science, for example, overlaps significantly with Earth science and the physical aspects it studies. Articles on planetary science might cover topics about the Earth itself, as well as any other planet or planetary body. The question could include moons, asteroids, gas giants, and entire planetary systems. The themes of interest in space sciences articles concerning planetary science are how these bodies formed, how they evolve, the resources they hold, and other physical aspects of them. As Earth-bound creatures, we have a particular affinity for this subject. In short, that might help us find new planets to one day call home.

Astrochemistry

Another interdisciplinary field that offers a college degree, astrochemistry, studies the overlap of astronomy with chemistry. It explores the various molecules in the universe. It also explains how they interact with one another and with radiation, primarily through the use of spectroscopy. Overall, astrochemists can infer properties of objects and phenomena in space, such as their elemental abundances and temperatures. Due to advancements in the field, many newly discovered molecules. We have also been able to learn about the compositions and interactions of materials all over the universe. The study allows us to understand how everything formed in the past and how it could change in the future. Combine the space sciences articles in this category with those in the chemistry category for a hybrid experience!

Aerospace Engineering (aka Rocket Science)

With a more hands-on approach, aerospace engineering tackles the practical matter of making spacecraft to explore space. The field also includes aircraft, as it started with the engineering of aviation methods. But it has since progressed to using advanced astrodynamics, materials science, and other mechanics for creating the machines that we use to explore and analyze space. Some of these machines, such as rovers and probes, venture into space alone to collect data that we interpret from Earth. Others, such as the International Space Station and the Space Shuttle, carry humans into space for direct exploration. Checking out the engineering articles in addition to these space sciences articles might give even more insights.

The Science of Humans and Life in Space

Space science started with looking up to the stars, and probably always included the urge to reach for them. However, it’s increasingly possible to reach the stars. Space exploration is frequently the main job in space science. It started with probes, then animals were sent up to test the waters, and then humans finally leaped. Now, we’re starting to think about what will be necessary for future generations to move away from the Earth through colonizing other planetary bodies.

One of the most important current areas of interest is the growing possibility of Mars colonization becoming a reality. Moving to Mars or one of the other water- or ice-bearing rocky bodies in the solar system is the logical next step for the human race. If we wish to survive long term in the solar system and beyond, we need to expand beyond this planet.

It is crucial to not only consider how to get to other planets but also how to settle on them. Common concerns of explorers on Earth are once again significant areas of research in space science. We are studying how to treat medical problems in space and on other planets and how to make the medicine, how to have sustainable agriculture, and how to maintain physical health on other planets; how to help humans physically and mentally tolerate long space journeys, etc.

Getting Involved in the Space Sciences

The space sciences articles in this category can help you learn both for fun and job goals. They keep professionals up to date or pair well for studying in tough college courses. After all, practically all of the sub-fields in space science require advanced education. Getting a bachelor’s degree in a core natural science such as physics or chemistry is probably sufficient, but should be followed by more specialized master’s or Ph.D. programs. Such highly skilled education on such a difficult topic is likely to lead to appropriately high pay and job security within the space sciences.

Outside of school, there are other ways to involve yourself in keeping up with current news, events, and activities. Other than Direct Knowledge, you can get quality reading material from sources such as AstronomyPlanetary Report, and Air & Space. Also, check out local organizations and clubs you can join for activities such as building rockets or stargazing. These are especially helpful for encouraging kids to explore a vibrant and exciting field that may lead them to great hobbies or even careers in the future.

Books in the Space Sciences

Space science definitions and resources do more than just satiate our sense of curiosity. It drives innovation that leads to new technologies and spurs economic growth. People draw inspiration from it to learn and to become scientists themselves. It encourages a broader view of the world that goes beyond our planet and Earth-bound problems. These are just a few reasons to get involved in the field, and you’re sure to find many more in the space sciences books in this category.

Space Sciences Books The Helix Nebula or NGC 7293 in the constellation Aquarius

Planets, Stars, Comets, and More

A space science degree is a vast field that includes several areas of study. Anything involving outer space is fair game. Some areas are apparent, like space exploration and astronomy. The book Astronomy in this category can help any reader better understand what lies beyond Earth. It covers topics such as planetary orbits and gravity, the solar system and its planets, other stars, and far away galaxies. It doesn’t focus too much on technical details like formulas and calculations. Instead, it uses visuals and new information to spark curiosity in readers.

But if you’re looking for something more technical, the space sciences book Mechanics and Relativity may be for you. The book is for students with no experience in the subject, but still teaches the math and physics related to these crucial areas of space sciences. The book introduces these subjects clearly and efficiently with helpful diagrams, examples, and original practice problems. This constant plus connections with real-world applications will keep any reader engaged.

More Topics in Space Science

Other subjects and degrees within the space sciences might be things you’ve never heard of, like astrobiology and space medicine. After all, how can we study biology in space if we don’t yet know of any life out there? Well, we can theorize about it, and we can explore how our biology interacts with space environments. Astrobiology even includes looking at how early life formed on Earth. Take a look at these unique disciplines and more in the space sciences books in this category of Direct Knowledge.

Space Sciences Books for Everyone

The great thing about the breadth of space science jobs is that it means almost anyone can start reading about it. For example, professionals and academics actively work in the field to come up with new technology, algorithms, math, theories, and more. For this, they need scientific work from other researchers and high-level space sciences books on new developments and methods.
But regular folks can also find material for learning just for the sake of curiosity. And they must do so. Science shouldn’t just be something for a select group of people. It should be taken into consideration in all decisions in society. The topic includes politics where average citizens vote for people who make decisions about scientific issues like health and the environment.

Relevance in Today’s World

Space science can give us insights into the workings of our planet, but it is also growing in significance in its own right. Although it feels like a long time ago, the moon landings were reasonably recent in the grand scheme of things. And, there is more talk every day about sending humans to Mars or even creating a lunar base. Some less exciting areas also require space science knowledge, like the use of satellites or potential dangers from solar flares and asteroids.
Space science books for the average person just looking to learn and be aware of discoveries generally won’t require specific knowledge ahead of time. But, there are also educational books for people with some experience, and those for higher-level learners. The other possibility is content looking to teach you how to get involved in the field actively. These focus less on discoveries and more on technicalities of science in the area and how to contribute. Whichever stage you’re at, you’ll find something that fits your level and interests.

Space Sciences FAQ

Interested in a space science degree but want to learn more? Start with these popular topics on the subject!

What is space science definition?

The definition of space science is the study of space exploration and phenomena outside of the planet Earth. The subject deals with the study of naturally occurring events happening in space, as well as the makeup of stars and planets. Space science has a broad definition because it incorporates many different elements of natural science and engineering.

What is the study of space science?

The study of space science includes anything to do with visiting space, learning about stars and planets, and studying what’s beyond Earth. Considering the subject can lead to many different topics, such as interplanetary geology, biology, and physics. Those who research space go through rigorous learning to understand the subject’s many interests and focuses.

Who studies outer space?

Outer space students study several different sciences from natural and applied science. The people who work on building knowledge of outer space come from many different disciplines such as engineering, biology, geology, and engineering. All different types of expertise are needed to further the knowledge humans have about space.

What are the branches of space science?

The branches of space science include astronomy, astrophysics, cosmology, and planetary science. Astronomy studies celestial phenomena, and astrophysics examines the way things move and occur in space. Cosmology follows the history of the universe, and planetary science focuses on planets, moons, and stars—all branches of space science help to build knowledge about space.