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Domesticating the Planets: Instruments and Practices in the Development of Planetary Geology

Shindell, Matthew Benjamin (2010) Domesticating the Planets: Instruments and Practices in the Development of Planetary Geology. Spontaneous Generations: A Journal for the History and Philosophy of Science, 4 (1). pp. 191-230. ISSN 1913-0465

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Abstract

This paper examines the roles played by instruments and their associated practices in the development of the field of planetary geology. Specifically, remote sensing instruments and the images produced by instrument users are discussed. It is argued that through these instruments and images the first two generations of planetary geologists were able to 'domesticate' the planets and make them suitable for geological study. But this was not a straightforward process. The instruments themselves had to be 'domesticated' as geological tools, and the definition of 'geologist' had to be broadened to include such tools and extraterrestrial terrains. This paper looks first at the first generation of planetary geologists associated with the mapping and study of the Moon in the 1960s and 70s, then focuses on the second generation that emerged during the exploration and mapping of Mars. Within this second section, the paper focuses on the introduction of one new type of instrument -- the orbiting infrared spectrometer, and examines three such instruments and the visual claims made with its images.


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Item Type: Published Article or Volume
Creators:
CreatorsEmailORCID
Shindell, Matthew Benjamin
Keywords: Scientific Realism; Epistemic Issues; Epistemology of Science
Subjects: General Issues > Scientific Metaphysics
General Issues > History of Philosophy of Science
General Issues > Realism/Anti-realism
General Issues > Science and Society
General Issues > Technology
General Issues > Values In Science
Depositing User: Jordan Miller
Date Deposited: 11 Sep 2021 03:08
Last Modified: 11 Sep 2021 03:08
Item ID: 17914
Journal or Publication Title: Spontaneous Generations: A Journal for the History and Philosophy of Science
Publisher: The University of Toronto
Official URL: https://spontaneousgenerations.library.utoronto.ca...
DOI or Unique Handle: https://doi.org/10.4245/sponge.v4i1.11954
Subjects: General Issues > Scientific Metaphysics
General Issues > History of Philosophy of Science
General Issues > Realism/Anti-realism
General Issues > Science and Society
General Issues > Technology
General Issues > Values In Science
Date: 30 August 2010
Page Range: pp. 191-230
Volume: 4
Number: 1
ISSN: 1913-0465
URI: https://philsci-archive-dev.library.pitt.edu/id/eprint/17914

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