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Consensus Study Report
Origins, Worlds, and Life: A Decadal Strategy for Planetary Science and Astrobiology 2023-2032


The next decade of planetary science and astrobiology holds tremendous promise. New research will expand our understanding of our solar system's origins, how planets form and evolve, under what conditions life can survive, and where to find potentially habitable environments in our solar system and beyond. Origins, Worlds, and Life: A Decadal Strategy for Planetary Science and Astrobiology 2023-2032 highlights key science questions, identifies priority missions, and presents a comprehensive research strategy that includes both planetary defense and human exploration. This report also recommends ways to support the profession as well as the technologies and infrastructure needed to carry out the science.



Public Briefing Video

Suggested Citation

National Academies of Sciences, Engineering, and Medicine. 2022. Origins, Worlds, and Life: A Decadal Strategy for Planetary Science and Astrobiology 2023-2032. Washington, DC: The National Academies Press.

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Publication Info

800 pages | 8.5 x 11 | Paperback
ISBN: 978-0-309-47578-5
Chapters skim
Front Matter i-xx
Summary 1-9
1 Introduction to Planetary Science, Astrobiology, and Planetary Defense 10-27
2 Tour of the Solar System: A Transformative Decade of Exploration 28-96
3 Priority Science Questions 97-101
4 Question 1: Evolution of the Protoplanetary Disk 102-129
5 Question 2: Accretion in the Outer Solar System 130-163
6 Question 3: Origin of Earth and Inner Solar System Bodies 164-191
7 Question 4: Impacts and Dynamics 192-218
8 Question 5: Solid Body Interiors and Surfaces 219-245
9 Question 6: Solid Body Atmospheres, Exospheres, Magnetospheres, and Climate Evolution 246-277
10 Question 7: Giant Planet Structure and Evolution 278-298
11 Question 8: Circumplanetary Systems 299-323
12 Question 9: Insights from Terrestrial Life 324-351
13 Question 10: Dynamic Habitability 352-381
14 Question 11: Search for Life Elsewhere 382-406
15 Question 12: Exoplanets 407-433
16 State of the Profession 434-463
17 Research and Analysis 464-494
18 Planetary Defense: Defending Earth through Applied Planetary Science 495-525
19 Human Exploration 526-544
20 Infrastructure for Planetary Science and Exploration 545-562
21 Technology 563-592
22 Recommended Program: 2023-2032 593-637
23 The Future 638-642
Appendixes 643-643
Appendix A: Letter of Request, Statement of Task, and Other Guidance 644-650
Appendix B: White Papers Received 651-673
Appendix C: Technical Risk and Cost Evaluation of Priority Missions 674-704
Appendix D: Missions Studied But Not Sent for TRACE 705-716
Appendix E: Panel Missions Not Selected for Additional Study 717-723
Appendix F: Glossary and Acronyms 724-734
Appendix G: Biographies of Committee Members and Staff 735-761

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Public Briefing Video

Hear from the decadal survey co-chairs about the key recommendations and priorities from the report.

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