Encyclopedia of Global Archaeology

Editors: Claire Smith

Space Archaeology

Reference work entry
DOI: https://doi.org/10.1007/978-1-4419-0465-2_1082

Introduction

Space archaeology is the study of the material culture associated with space exploration from the twentieth century onwards. This includes terrestrial infrastructure related to the development, manufacturing, operation, and use of space systems, spacecraft and space debris located throughout the solar system and the landing sites of robotic and crewed missions on other planets and celestial bodies. Space archaeology sits within the field known as “archaeology of the contemporary past.”

The era of modern rocketry, which created the first real capacity to break free of Earth’s gravity, had its roots in the amateur rocket societies of the first half of the twentieth century. In World War II (1939–1945), Germany developed missiles capable of reaching other continents and, hence, also capable of reaching space. The V2 rocket drew on the expertise of the amateur rocketeers such as Wernher von Braun, and following the war, a diaspora of German rocket scientists and materials...

This is a preview of subscription content, log in to check access

References

  1. Capelotti, P.J. 2010. The human archaeology of space: lunar, planetary and interstellar relics of exploration. Jefferson (NC): McFarland & Company Inc.Google Scholar
  2. Fewer, G. 2002. Toward an LSMR and MSMR (Lunar and Martian Sites & Monuments Records): recording planetary spacecraft landing sites as archaeological monuments of the future, in M. Russell (ed.) Digging holes in popular culture. Archaeology and science fiction: 112-120. Oxford: Oxbow BooksGoogle Scholar
  3. Gorman, A.C. 2005a. The cultural landscape of interplanetary space. Journal of Social Archaeology 5(1): 85-107.Google Scholar
  4. - 2005b. The archaeology of orbital space, in Australian Space Science Conference 2005: 338-357. Melbourne: RMIT University.Google Scholar
  5. - 2009a. Beyond the space race: the significance of space sites in a new global context, in A. Piccini & C. Holtorf (ed.) Contemporary archaeologies: excavating now. 161-180. Bern: Peter Lang.Google Scholar
  6. - 2009b. The gravity of archaeology. Archaeologies: The Journal of the World Archaeological Congress 5(2): 344-359.Google Scholar
  7. Gorman, A.C. & B.L. O’Leary. 2007. An ideological vacuum: the Cold War in space, in J. Schofield & W. Cocroft (ed.) A fearsome heritage: diverse legacies of the Cold War: 73-92. Walnut Creek (CA): Left Coast Press.Google Scholar
  8. O’Leary, B.L. 2009. Historic preservation at the edge: archaeology on the moon, in space and on other celestial bodies. Historic Environment 22(1): 13-18.Google Scholar
  9. Rathje, W. 1999. An archaeology of space garbage. Discovering Archaeology October: 108-112.Google Scholar
  10. Spennemann, D.H.R. & G. Murphy. 2009. Failed Mars mission landing sites: heritage places or forensic investigation scenes?, in A. Darrin & B.L. O’Leary (ed.) The handbook of space engineering, archaeology and heritage: 457-480. Boca Raton: CRC Press.Google Scholar

Further Reading

  1. Campbell, J.B. 2009. Developing exoarchaeology in the solar system and beyond, in A. Darrin & B.L. O’Leary (ed.) The handbook of space engineering, archaeology and heritage: 873-886. Boca Raton: CRC Press.Google Scholar
  2. Clarke, A.C. 1945. Extra-terrestrial relays. Can rocket stations give world-wide radio coverage? Wireless World October: 305-308.Google Scholar
  3. Darrin, A.G & B.L O‘Leary. 2009 (ed.) Handbook of space engineering, Archaeology and heritage. Boca Raton: CRC Press.Google Scholar
  4. Deetz, J. 1967.Invitation to archaeology. Garden City (NY): Natural History Press.Google Scholar
  5. Gorman, A.C. 2009. Heritage of earth orbit: orbital debris – its mitigation and heritage, in A. Darrin & B.L. O’Leary (ed.) The handbook of space engineering, archaeology and heritage: 381-398. Boca Raton: CRC Press.Google Scholar
  6. ICOMOS & TICCIH. 2011 Joint ICOMOS – TICCIH principles for the conservation of industrial heritage sites, structures, areas and landscapes. (The Dublin Principles). Available at: http://www.icomos.org/Paris2011/GA2011_ICOMOS_TICCIH_joint_principles_EN_FR_final_20120110.pdf.
  7. O’Leary, B.L. 2006. The cultural heritage of space, the moon and other celestial bodies. Antiquity 80 (307). Available at: http://antiquity.ac.uk/Projgall/oleary/.
  8. -2009. The evolution of space archaeology and heritage, in A. Darrin & B.L. O’Leary (ed.) The handbook of space engineering, archaeology and heritage: 29-48. Boca Raton: CRC Press.Google Scholar
  9. NASA. 2011. NASA’s recommendations to space-faring entities: how to protect and preserve the historic and scientific value of US Government lunar artifacts. Human Exploration and Operations Mission Directorate Strategic Analysis and Integration Division. Available at: http://www.collectspace.com/news/NASA-USG_lunar_historic_sites.pdf.
  10. Spennenmann, D.H.R. 2004 The ethics of treading on Neil Armstrong’s footprints. Space Policy 20: 279–290.Google Scholar
  11. - 2006. Out of this world: issues of managing tourism and humanity’s heritage on the moon. International Journal of Heritage Studies 12: 356-371.Google Scholar

Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media New York 2014

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Department of Archaeology, Flinders UniversityAdelaideAustralia