FAQ Footnotes and Citations

[1] Oxidation and reduction are chemistry terms: “Oxidation refers to gaining oxygen, losing hydrogen or losing one or more electrons. Reduction refers to losing oxygen, gaining hydrogen or gaining one or more electrons” (Housecroft & Sharpe 2012, 242).

In the Psyche’s case, these terms refer to whether there is a lot of oxygen present in the asteroid’s metal compounds (oxidized) or little to no oxygen (reduced). Answering this question will help us to determine the conditions of the environment in which Psyche formed.

Housecroft, C.E., and A.G. Sharpe. 2012. “Reduction and Oxidation.” In Inorganic Chemistry, 4th edition, 242-268. New York: Pearson.


[2] May, Sandra. 2017. “Radar.” NASA’s Picture Dictionary. Last updated 6 Aug. 2017. https://www.nasa.gov/audience/forstudents/k-4/dictionary/Radar.html.


[3] Ostro, S.J. 1999. “Planetary Radar.” In Encyclopedia of the Solar System edited by Paul Weissman, Lucy-Ann McFadden and Torrence Johnson. Cambridge: Academic Press. https://echo.jpl.nasa.gov/asteroids/ostro_1998_encyc_ss.pdf.


[4] Jet Propulsion Laboratory. 2015. “What on Mars is a High Thermal-Inertia Surface?” Published April 8, 2015. https://www.jpl.nasa.gov/spaceimages/details.php?id=PIA19357.


[5] Burbine, Thomas H. 2017. “Reflectance Spectrosopy and Asteroid Taxonomy.” In Asteroids: Astronomical and Geological Bodies, 133-184. Cambridge: Cambridge University Press.


[6] Shepard, M.K., J. Richardson, P.A. Taylor, L.A. Rodriguez-Ford, A. Conrad, I. de Pater, M. Adamkovics, K. de Kleer, J.R. Males, K.M. Morzinski, et al. 2017. “Radar observations and shape model of asteroid 16 Psyche.” Icarus 281: 388-403. http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.icarus.2016.08.011.


[7] NASA Space Place. 2017. “How long is one day on other planets?” Solar System. Last updated 12 Oct. 2017. https://spaceplace.nasa.gov/days/en/.


[8] JPL Solar System Dynamics. 2003. “16 Psyche.” Last Updated 29 Aug. 2003. https://ssd.jpl.nasa.gov/sbdb.cgi?sstr=16.


[9] NASA. 2010. “Introduction to Mass vs. Weight.” Mass vs. Weight Educator Guide. Last updated 14 Nov. 2017. https://www.nasa.gov/pdf/591747main_MVW_Intro.pdf.


[10] NASA Space Place. 2018. “How Do We Weigh Planets?” Solar System. Last updated 4 June 2018. https://spaceplace.nasa.gov/planets-weight/en/.


[11] Drummond, J.D., W. J. Merline, B. Carry, A. Conrad, V. Reddy, P. Tamblyn, C.R. Chapman, B.L. Enke, I. de Pater, K. de Kleer, et al. 2018. “The triaxial ellipsoid size, density, and rotational pole of asteroid (16) Psyche from Keck and Gemini AO observations 2004-2015.” Icarus 305: 174-185. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.icarus.2018.01.010.


[12] Elkins-Tanton, L. T., E Asphaug, J.F. Bell, D. Bercovici, B.G. Bills, R.P. Binzel, W.F. Bottke, M. Brown, J. Goldsten, R. Jaumann, et al. 2017. “Asteroid (16) Psyche: Visiting a Metal World.” In Lunar and Planetary Science Conference: Vol. 48. https://www.hou.usra.edu/meetings/lpsc2017/pdf/1718.pdf.


[13] The Arecibo Observatory Admin. 2017. “Radar Observations and Shape Model of Asteroid 16 Psyche.” Published 18 July 2017. http://outreach.naic.edu/ao/blog/radar-observations-and-shape-model-asteroid-16-psyche.


[14] NASA. 2014. “How Will NASA’s Asteroid Redirect Mission Help Humans Reach Mars?” Asteroid Redirect Mission. Last updated August 7, 2017. https://www.nasa.gov/content/how-will-nasas-asteroid-redirect-mission-help-humans-reach-mars.


[15] National Weather Service. n.d. “Introduction to the Atmosphere.” JetStream. Accessed 25 Feb. 2019. https://www.weather.gov/jetstream/atmos_intro.


[16] NASA. 2016. “NASA – Ion Propulsion.” Space Tech. Last updated August 6, 2017. https://www.nasa.gov/centers/glenn/about/fs21grc.html.


[17] Elkins‐Tanton, L. T., Asphaug, E., Bell, J. F., III, Bercovici, H., Bills, B., Binzel, R., et al. 2020. Observations, meteorites, and models: A preflight assessment of the composition and formation of (16) Psyche. JGR: Planets, 125, e2019JE006296. https://doi.org/ 10.1029/2019JE006296.


[18] “Planetesimals are small bodies of rock and/or ice that form by accretion in the protoplanetary disks of protostellar systems. These small objects continue to accrete and merge until finally a planetary system is formed. In our own Solar System, small asteroids are examples of leftover planetesimals.”

Swinburne University of Technology. n.d. “Planetesimals.” COSMOS – The SAO Encyclopedia of Astronomy. Accessed 2 Oct. 2021. https://astronomy.swin.edu.au/cosmos/p/planetesimals.