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Encyclopedia of Earth Sciences Series

Encyclopedia of Planetary Sciences

Editors: Shirley, J.H., Fairbridge, Rhodes W. (Eds.)

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  • ISBN 978-1-4020-4520-2
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About this book

Containing more than 450 entries by some 200 eminent contributors from all over the world, the Encyclopedia of Planetary Sciences is the first book to present this information in an authoritative yet approachable way. This encyclopedia deals with the atmospheres, surfaces and interiors of the planets and moons, and with the interplanetary environment of plasma fields, as well as with asteroids and meteorites. Processes such as accretion, differentiation, thermal evolution and impact cratering form another category of entries. Remote sensing techniques employed in investigation and exploration, such as magnetometry, photometry, and spectroscopy are described in separate articles. In addition the Encyclopedia chronicles the history of planetary science, including biographies of pioneering scientists, and detailed descriptions of all major lunar and planetary missions and programs. The Encyclopedia of Planetary Sciences is superbly illustrated throughout with over 450 line drawings, 180 black and white photographs, and 63 colour illustrations. It will be a key reference source for planetary scientists, astronomers, and workers in related disciplines such as geophysics, geology and the atmospheric sciences. Included in this book is a PC and Mac compatible CD-ROM containing over 200 relevant planetary and related images available from NASA. This CD-ROM has been specially compiled for the Encyclopedia by The United States National Space Science Data Center.

About the authors

James H. Shirley has written many scientific publications in the fields of lunar and terrestrial seismology, solar physics, and atmospheric sciences. He is a member of the Near-Infrared Mapping Spectrometer Science team of the Galileo Mission to Jupiter, based at the Jet Propulsion Laboratory in Pasadena, California. Professor Rhodes W. Fairbridge is emeritus Professor of Geology at Columbia University and is now visiting scientist at the Goddard Institute of Space Studies (NASA, NY). He has edited more that two dozen encyclopedias and authored more than three-hundred scientific publications.


Encyclopedia of Planetary Sciences Wins GIS/Mary B. Ansari Best Reference Work Award
DAVIS, CA. -The Encyclopedia of Planetary Sciences has been selected to receive the 1999 GIS/Mary B. Ansari Best Reference Work Award. James H. Shirley and Rhodes W. Fairbridge are the editors of this reference work published by Chapman & Hall in 1997.
The selection committee members were impressed with the Encyclopedia's comprehensiveness and its good balance between short biographical entries and longer authoritative articles on major aspects of planetary sciences. It has excellent indexes, cross-references, extensive bibliographies, and a CD of NASA images.
The Geoscience Information Society has presented the GIS-Mary B. Ansari Best Reference Work Award annually since 1988. The award honors an outstanding reference work published in the field of geoscience information during the previous three years.
The Geoscience Information Society is an international professional organization created to improve the exchange of information in the earth sciences. To achieve this goal, GIS encourages interaction and cooperation among scientists, librarians, editors, cartographers, educators, and information professionals. More information about the Society may be found at the GIS website at

`... informative, authoritative and up to date ... comprehensive and concise coverage of planetary science ... of great use to professionals and students ... the book of the decade.'
New Scientist
`This is an impressive volume of information ...'
Australian Mineral Foundation
`This is a splendid volume ... beautifully illustrated ... It is a must for any library covering geological and planetological interests.'
Joe McCall in the Geoscientist, 8:5
`...this is an outstanding book, and at 62 GBP for the paperback edition, extremely good value. I would highly recommend it both for personal and library purchase.'
Chris Kitchin in Astronomy Now (December 2001)
`This hefty book is meticulously edited. High-quality, legible figures comprise 450 line-drawings, 180 black and white photographs and 63 color illustrations. [...] It will be attractive for professionals, students and interested laypeople. Particularly, it will satify expectations of planetary scientsits, astronomers and researchers in related disciplines of geology, geophysics and atmospheric sciences. Included PC and Mac compatible CD-ROM, specially compiled for this book by the US National Space Science Data Center will be a helpful took for teachers in natural sciences, as it contains over 200 planetary and related images available from NASA.'
Pure and Applied Geophysics, 161 (2004)

Buy this book

eReference $549.00
price for USA in USD
  • ISBN 978-1-4020-4520-2
  • Free shipping for individuals worldwide
  • Immediate ebook access, if available*, with your print order

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Bibliographic Information

Bibliographic Information
Book Title
Encyclopedia of Planetary Sciences
  • J.H. Shirley
  • Rhodes W. Fairbridge
Series Title
Encyclopedia of Earth Sciences Series
Springer Netherlands
Copyright Holder
Springer Science+Business Media B.V.
Distribution Rights
Distribution rights for Bahrain, Kuwait, Oman, Qatar, United Arab Emirates: Pan World General Trading LLC, Sharjah, United Arab Emirates
eReference ISBN
Series ISSN
Edition Number
Number of Pages
XXX, 990

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