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3012 Bern

Phone +41 31 684 48 96

Our scientific opportunities support the community through six distinct modes of operation. Links to proposal templates or on-line submission forms are provided for each individual tool.

Find explanations, forms of applications and an overview of current and past activities.


Volume SSSI 88

The Heliosphere in the Local Interstellar Medium – Into the Unknown

"The Heliosphere in the Local Interstellar Medium", the Proceedings of the First ISSI Workshop 6-10 November 1995, Bern, Switzerland, edited by R. von Steiger, R. Lallement, and M.A. Lee and published in 1996, was the first International Space Science Institute (ISSI) book in the Space Sciences Series. This book covers the knowledge gained in the subsequent 27 years that revolutionized our understanding of the interaction of the heliosphere with the very local interstellar medium (VLISM). Entirely new regions of space have been explored! The Voyagers both crossed the termination shock, passed through the heliosheath, crossed the heliopause, and entered the interstellar medium. New Horizons was launched with more modern instrumentation and explores low-latitude regions of the outer heliosphere. Energetic neutral atoms observed by IBEX and CASSINI allowed exploration of the heliosphere over the whole sky. The initial reconnaissance of the heliosphere and VLISM is complete with in situ measurements, observations of energetic neutral atoms (ENAs), neutral VLISM H and He, UV emissions, and interstellar dust.


John D. Richardson, Andrei Bykov, Frederic Effenberger, Klaus Scherer, Veerle J Sterken, Rudolf von Steiger, Gary P. Zank

  • ISBN: 978-94-024-2228-3
  • Published: December 2023
Volume SSSI 86

Global Change in Africa

The main objective of this book is to provide an overview of the benefit of using Earth Observation data to monitor global environmental changes due to natural phenomena and anthropogenic forcing factors over the African continent, and highlight a number of applications of high societal relevance.


A. Cazenave, D. Baratoux, T. Lopez, J.K. Kouamé, J. Benveniste, L. Moreira (Eds.)

  • ISBN: 978-3-031-39273-3
  • Published: October 2023
Volume SSSI 85

Probing Earth’s Deep Interior Using Space Observations Synergistically

During the recent decades, space missions (e.g., CHAMP, GOCE, GRACE and Swarm) have been developed by space agencies in Europe and the USA to measure the Earth’s gravity and magnetic fields and their spatio-temporal variations. These successful missions have already provided a wealth of groundbreaking results about the permanent and time-variable gravity and magnetic fields of the Earth.


V. Dehant, M. Mandea, A. Cazenave, L. Moreira

  • ISBN: 978-3-031-39281-8
  • Published: August 2023
Volume SSSI 76

Oscillatory Processes in Solar and Stellar Coronae

The book presents a broad and in-depth overview of recent achievements and the current state of research in magnetohydrodynamic (MHD) oscillatory and wave phenomena in the coronae of the Sun and stars. Major progress in coronal wave studies has been achieved thanks to the combination of high-precision multi-wavelength observations with spaceborne and ground-based facilities, elaborated theory of the interaction of MHD waves with plasma non-uniformities, state-of-the-art numerical simulations, and novel data analysis techniques. It has allowed the research community to reach a new look at the role played by MHD wave processes in the enigmatic phenomena of coronal plasma heating and wind acceleration as well as powerful energy releases such as flares and coronal mass ejections. In addition, the waves are intensively used as natural probes in the remote diagnostics of the coronal plasma parameters and physical processes operating in solar and stellar coronae via the method of MHD seismology.


Valery M. Nakariakov, Dipankar Banerjee, Bo Li, Tongjiang Wang, Ivan Zimovets, Maurizio Falanga

  • ISBN: 978-94-024-2195-8
  • Published: January 2023
Volume SSSI 81

Understanding the Diversity of Planetary Atmospheres

Thanks to the observation of a growing number of planetary atmospheres, we are at the dawn of a major scientific revolution in atmospheric and climate sciences. But are we ready to understand what will be discovered around other stars?
This book brings together 15 review chapters that study and provide up-to-date information on the physical and chemical processes that control the nature of atmospheres. It identifies commonalities between various solar system atmospheres, analyzes the dynamic processes behind different atmospheric circulation regimes, and outlines key questions remaining in solar system science.


F. Forget, O. Korablev, J. Venturini, T. Imamura, H. Lammer, M. Blanc

  • ISBN: 978-94-024-2125-5
  • Published: November 2021
Volume SSSI 80

Reading Terrestrial Planet Evolution in Isotopes and Element Measurements

This volume takes an interdisciplinary approach to the evolution of terrestrial planets, addressing the topic from the perspectives of planetary sciences, geochemistry, geophysics and biology, and solar and astrophysics. The review papers analyze the chemical, isotopic and elemental evolution of the early Solar System, with specific emphasis on Venus, Earth, and Mars. They discuss how these factors contribute to our understanding of accretion timescales, volatile delivery, the origin of the Moon and the evolution of atmospheres and water inventories of terrestrial planets. Also explored are plate tectonic formation, the origin of nitrogen atmospheres and the prospects for exoplanet habitability.


H. Lammer, B. Marty, A. Zerkle, M. Blanc, H. O'Neill, T. Kleine

  • ISBN: 978-94-024-2093-7
  • Published: August 2021
Volume SSSI 79

The Tidal Disruption of Stars by Massive Black Holes

This volume provides an overview of the fast-developing field of tidal disruption events. For several decades, astronomers speculated that a hapless star could wander too close to a massive black hole and be torn apart by tidal forces. Yet it is only with the recent advent of wide-field transient surveys that such events have been detected.
Written by a team of prominent researchers, the chapters detail the discoveries made so far in this burgeoning field of study across the entire electromagnetic spectrum, from gamma-rays through X-rays, ultra-violet, optical, infrared, and radio. In addition, they show how tidal disruption events can be used to study the properties of otherwise undetectable supermassive black holes; the populations and dynamics of stars in galactic nuclei; the physics of black hole accretion, including the potential to detect relativistic effects near a SMBH; and the physics of (radio) jet formation and evolution in a pristine environment.
Finally, the book outlines important outstanding questions about TDEs. With more than 100 color images, the volume will be useful to researchers and others interested in learning more about this promising area of astrophysics.


P. Jonker, I. Arcavi, E.S. Phinney, E.M. Rossi, N.C. Stone, S. van Velzen

  • ISBN: 978-94-024-2145-3
  • Published: May 2021
Volume SSSI 73

Cometary Science: Insights from 67P/Churyumov-Gerasimenko

This book gives a status report on where we stand today in studies of cometary nuclei and their immediate environment. The papers were derived from a Horizon 2020 project called MiARD (Multi-instrument Analysis of Rosetta Data), which was designed to use multiple datasets from the Rosetta mission to comet 67P/Churyumov-Gerasimenko to place further constraints on the properties of the nucleus of the comet and its immediate environment. The individual chapters are the result of a significant effort by leading researchers to establish clear statements on what we know from current cometary data. Based on a workshop held in 2018 at the International Space Sciences Institute, the book focuses on the nucleus itself and the relationship between the surface properties and the observed outgassing. Additionally, it makes a first critical assessment of the Rosetta dataset, establishing what would be an appropriate next step in cometary research.


Nicolas Thomas, Björn Davidsson, Laurent Jorda, Ekkehard Kührt, Raphael Marschall, Colin Snodgrass, Rafael Rodrigo

  • ISBN: 978-94-024-2089-0
  • Published: April 2021
Volume SSSI 78

Auroral Physics

This volume surveys our current scientific understanding of the terrestrial aurora. It is organized into eleven reviews detailing theoretical and observational aspects of characteristic auroral morphologies, and how these in turn are organized according to local time, latitude, and activity level.
Popular descriptions often attribute the aurora to the interaction of charged particles from the solar wind with atoms in the upper atmosphere. In fact, most auroras are not the result of direct entry of solar wind particles. Rather, as detailed in this volume, auroral particle acceleration and generation of auroral forms occur primarily within the magnetosphere. Importantly, many key aspects of the aurora – most notably, the physical mechanisms responsible for the generation of discrete arcs – are still unexplained, and auroral physics continues to be an active area of scientific research. Each review chapter therefore includes a summary of open questions for further investigation.


David J. Knudsen, Joseph E. Borovsky, Tomas Karlsson, Ryuho Kataoka, Noora Partamies

  • ISBN: 978-94-024-2121-7
  • Published: February 2021
Volume SSSI 83

Star Formation

The review papers in this volume provide an in-depth examination of complex astrophysical phenomena of star formation via multi-wavelength observations and modeling.


A.M. Bykov, C. Charbonnel, P. Hennebelle, A. Marcowith, G. Meynet, M. Falanga, R. von Steiger

  • ISBN: 978-94-024-2061-6
  • Published: December 2020
A Spiral Amongst Thousands
Credits ESA/Webb, NASA & CSA, A. Martel