Scientific Commissions

Two primary types of scientific body are active in COSPAR:  Scientific Commissions and Panels.  The rules governing these bodies are contained in the COSPAR By-Laws.  In certain cases, the Bureau or the Scientific Commissions set up Sub-Commissions or Task Groups to address specific topics of scientific interest to Associates. 

The general responsibilities of Scientific Commissions and Panels include, but are not limited to, the following:

  1. To discuss, formulate and coordinate internationally cooperative experimental investigations in space,
  2. To encourage interactions between experimenters and theoreticians, in order to maximize space science results, especially interpretation arising out of analyses of the observations,
  3. To stimulate and coordinate the exchange of scientific results,
  4. To plan scientific events at the biennial Assemblies where discussions will be held concerning the results of recent space research, with an appropriate mixture of review and contributed papers,
  5. To carry out these tasks in the closest possible association with other organizations interested in these and related tasks,
  6. To prepare a brief report on the open business meeting for presentation to the Council,
  7. To communicate regularly with COSPAR Associates through contributions, scientific or otherwise, to Space Research Today, COSPAR’s information bulletin.  Deadlines:  1 February for the April issue, 1 June for the August issue, 1 October for the December issue.

Scientific Commission officers are elected by COSPAR Associates present at the open business meetings held during Assemblies. 

Overview Of Current COSPAR Scientific Structure

Commission A Space Studies of the Earth’s Surface, Meteorology and Climate
  • Task Group on GEO (TG GEO)
  • Sub-Commission A1 on Atmosphere (incl. Troposphere and Stratosphere), Meteorology and Climate
  • Sub-Commission A2 on Ocean Dynamics and Productivity
  • Sub-Commission A3 on Land Processes and Morphology
Commission B Space Studies of the Earth-Moon System, Planets, and Small Bodies of the Solar System
  • Sub-Commission B1 on Space Related Studies of Small Bodies
  • Sub-Commission B2 on International Coordination of Space Techniques for Geodesy, joint with IUGG/IAG Commission I on Reference Frames
  • Sub-Commission B3 on the Moon
  • Sub-Commission B4 on Terrestrial Planets
  • Sub-Commission B5 on Outer Planets and Satellites
  • Sub-Commission B6/E4 on Exoplanets
Commission C Space Studies of the Upper Atmospheres of the Earth and Planets Including Reference Atmospheres
  • Sub-Commission C1 on the Earth’s Upper Atmosphere and Ionosphere
  • Sub-Commission C2 on the Earth’s Middle Atmosphere and Lower Ionosphere
  • Sub-Commission C3 on Planetary Atmospheres and Aeronomy
  • Task Group on Reference Atmospheres of Planets and Satellites (RAPS)
  • URSI/COSPAR Task Group on the International Reference Ionosphere (IRI)
  • COSPAR/URSI Task Group on Reference Atmospheres, including ISO WG4 (CIRA)
  • Sub-Commission C5/D4 on Theory and Observations of Active Experiments
Commission D Space Plasmas in the Solar System, Including Planetary Magnetospheres
  • Sub-Commission D1 on the Heliosphere
  • Sub-Commission D2/E3 on the Transition from the Sun to the Heliosphere
  • Sub-Commission D3 on Magnetospheres
  • Sub-Commission C5/D4 on Theory and Observations of Active Experiments
Commission E Research in Astrophysics from Space
  • Sub-Commission E1 on Galactic and Extragalactic Astrophysics
  • Sub-Commission E2 on the Sun as a Star
  • Sub-Commission D2/E3 on the Transition from the Sun to the Heliosphere
  • Sub-Commission B6/E4 on Exoplanets
Commission F Life Sciences as Related to Space
  • Sub-Commission F1 on Gravitational and Space Biology
  • Sub-Commission F2 on Radiation Environment, Biology and Health
  • Sub-Commission F3 on Astrobiology
  • Sub-Commission F4 on Natural and Artificial Ecosystems
  • Sub-Commission F5 on Gravitational Physiology in Space
Commission G Materials Sciences in Space
  • No Sub-Commissions
Commission H Fundamental Physics in Space
    • No Sub-Commissions