Planetary Geology

Planetary Geology
Planetary Geology

Key to understanding the geologic history and evolution of the early Earth is the knowledge of the origin and development of all bodies in the solar system: therefore the exploration of the inner solar system’s terrestrial planets, of the Earth’s Moon, of the outer solar system’s giantic gas planets and the many satellites with their variable surface expressions, and finally of the asteroids and comets increases our understanding of the thermodynamic processes in the interior and the geologic processes at the surface of these celestial bodies. In addition, the investigation of forms, sizes, and frequencies of impact craters on the surfaces of planets and satellites is used to determine the surface age of a geologic unit: This is important to better understand the development of a planetary body in space and time. Remote-sensing experiments on unmanned automated spacecraft are the preferred source of data used for most of this research.

Main science objectives

  • Comparative planetology
  • Geology, tectonics und stratigraphy of solid planetary surfaces
  • Photogrammetry and 3D-visualization of planetary surfaces
  • Geodetic networks of planetary bodies
  • Multispectral image processing and analysis
  • Age determination of surfaces on planets and satellites
  • Mission-related activities
  • European Fireball Network for tracking meteors

Prof.Dr. Ralf Jaumann
German Aerospace Center

Institute of Planetary Research
, Planetary Geology
Tel: +49 30 67055-400

Fax: +49 30 67055-402

URL for this article