Elementary differentiation (Planetary differentiation)

(Last edited: Sunday, 17 September 2023, 10:42 PM)

Source: By James St. John - Brachinite (NWA 3151 Meteorite) 3, CC BY 2.0, https://commons.wikimedia.org/w/index.php?curid=34763072

Short Definition:

A process that a planetary body goes through during its formation to acquire its physio-chemical composition. Elementary differentiation can be witnessed on planets, and natural satellites such as the moon.

Detailed Definition:


1. Elementary (Adjective), originating from Latin elementarius, which means “belonging to the constituents of all things”.

2. Differentiation (Verb), originating from Medieval Latin, differentiatus, which means “to distinguish”.

Sample Sentence(s):

“These high precision measurements (δ56Fe ≈ ± 0.04‰, 2 S.D.) place tight constraints on Fe isotope fractionation during planetary differentiation.”

  • French: Différenciation élémentaire
  • German: Elementare Differenzierung
  • Polish: Dyferencjacja planetarna
  • Swedish: Elementär differentiering

Links to Videos/Articles:

[Gardner-Vandy et Al. (2012)] The Tafassasset primitive achondrite: Insights into initial stages of planetary differentiation

Differentiation Planetary, Frank Sohl and Doris Breuer, Encyclopedia of Astrobiology.



» Dictionary of Space Concepts