Browse the glossary using this index

Special | A | B | C | D | E | F | G | H | I | J | K | L | M | N | O | P | Q | R | S | T | U | V | W | X | Y | Z | ALL



(Last edited: Wednesday, 16 August 2023, 12:42 PM)

Short Definition:

A usually massive iron-black mineral that consists of an oxide of iron and titanium and that is a major titanium ore.

Detailed Definition:

Ilmenite is named after the Ilmenski mountains in Russia, where the mineral was first discovered. It is slightly magnetic, which means that magnets can be used to separate it from other minerals in sand deposits. Ilmenite is also a common accessory mineral in igneous rocks, sediments, and sedimentary rocks in many parts of the world. Also, it is a black iron-titanium oxide with a chemical composition of FeTiO3. 


Named after Ilmen Mountains in Russia +‎ -ite in 1827. 

The suffix –ite is used to form nouns denoting rocks or minerals, from Latin -ītēs, and from Ancient Greek -ῑ́της.

Sample Sentences:

"Ilmenite is an economically important and interesting mineral."

"Ilmenite is the most important ore of titanium and the main source of titanium dioxide, which is used in paints, printing inks, fabrics, plastics, paper, sunscreen, food and cosmetics."


  • French: Illménite
  • German: Ilmenit
  • Polish: Ilmenit
  • Swedish: Ilmenit

Links to Videos/Articles:



(Last edited: Saturday, 30 September 2023, 8:57 PM)



Rapid expansion of the universe at its early stages of development (at around 10-36 seconds after the Big Bang).

The Inflation Theory was developed in 1980 by Alan Guth, Andrei Linde, Paul Steinhardt, and Andy Albrecht and attempted to account for phenomena that could not be explained by the Big Bang Theory (the Horizon Problem, the Flatness Problem and the Monopole Problem). Nowadays, the Inflation Theory is considered to be an extension of the Big Bang Theory.

  • French:
  • German:
  • Polish: inflacja kosmologiczna
  • Swedish:


(Last edited: Friday, 28 April 2023, 6:09 PM)




Short Definition:

Light with wavelength from 800 nanometers to 1 millimiter.

Detailed Definition:

Electromagnetic radiation with wavelengths ranging from 800 nanometers to one millimeter. It is next to the red end of the visible spectrum, hereby the name. Also called IR, it is a kind of electromagnetic radiation that has qualities like both a wave and a particle, the photon, and propagates energy and momentum as well as exerting radiation pressure.


Infrared comes from Latin: infra, which means below.

Sample Sentence(s):

To keep an eye on workplace activities, they used infrared cameras.

Without disturbing the bats, an infrared camera records them.

Translations of Terms/Concepts into Partner Languages

French: infrarouge

German: Infrarot

Polish: podczerwień

Swedish: infraröd

Links to Videos/Articles:

Initial mass function (IMF)

(Last edited: Saturday, 30 September 2023, 8:59 PM)

Image source:

Image source:

Short Definition:

The initial mass function (IMF) describes the distribution of stellar masses as a large cluster of stars is newly formed and is based on an average from stars in our Milky Way.

This function is useful for understanding the formation of stellar systems and their evolution. In most cases, the initial mass function is shown with a logarithmic scale.

Derailed Definition:

The initial mass function shows few massive stars which are more massive than the sun, while sun-sized stars are more abundant and stars that are smaller than the sun are quite common (this trend does not continue linear the smaller they get):

The function can be described by using the following law:

IMF = constant x m^(-α)

where m = initial star mass and α = slope of the logarithmic plot.

Until this point in time, it is not certain if the IMF varies in extreme situations and if the calculation based on our Milky Way can be unconditionally applied to other galaxies.


initial - Latin initialis ("initial, incipent, of the beginning")

mass - old French masse (" lump, heap, pile; crowd, large amount")

function - Latin functionem (" a performance, an execution")

Sample sentences:

There are different curve forms of the initial mass function based on the way the alpha and the constant are calculated.


French: fonction de masse initiale

German: Anfangsmassenfunktion

Polish: początkowa funkcja masy

Swedish: funktion för dem ursprungliga massan

Links to Videos/Articles:

International Asteroid Warning Network

(Last edited: Saturday, 30 September 2023, 9:17 PM)

Short Definition
International Asteroid Warning Network (IAWN) is a group linking organizations responsible for detecting, monitoring and characterization of possibly hazardous Near-Earth Objects (NEOs). They cooperate with Governments to establish plans in case of Meteorite impact.

Detailed Definition

There are multiple functions of IAWN, but mostly it is tasked with creating a strategy using protocols and communication plans to help Governments create a suitable response in case of NEO impact. Some of the other functions of IAWN are as followed:

- With help of optical and radar facilities to detect, characterize and follow possibly hazardous objects.
- To act as an international focal point for accurate information about NEOs and its population.
- To correlate campaigns that are focusing on monitoring potential Near-Earth Objects.
- To create suitable responses and policies regarding communication and information in case of impact. They are also responsible for creating a database of potential consequences once the impact occurs.


IAWN stands for International Asteroid Warning Network.

Sample Sentence(s):

IAWN includes members from all over the world that are creating a response in case of meteorite impact.

Translations of Terms/Concepts into Partner Languages:

French: International Asteroid Warning Network

International Asteroid Warning Network

International Asteroid Warning Network

Międzynarodowa Sieć Ostrzegania przed Asteroidami

International Asteroid Warning Network

Links to Videos/Articles:

  • Warner, E. (2021), International Asteroid Warning Network, Retrieved from

  • United Nations Office for Outer Space Affairs (2014), IAWN, Retrieved from

  • ESA (2011), Space Situational Awareness - Near Earth Objects, Retrieved from

International Space Station

(Last edited: Saturday, 30 September 2023, 9:45 PM)


A research facility that was launched in 1998, is orbiting around the Earth and is operated by multinational groups of astronauts sent regularly by five space agencies participating in the project – NASA (the USA), Roscosmos (Russia), ESA (Europe), JAXA (Japan) and CSA (Canada).

  • English: International Space Station, ISS    [ˌɪn.təˈnæʃ.(ə.)n(ə)l speɪs ˈsteɪʃǝn]
  • French: Station spatiale internationale (f), SSI    [stasjɔ̃ spasjal ɛ̃tɛʁnasjɔnal]
  • German: die Internationale Raumstation    [ɪntɐnat͡sjo:na:lə ʁaʊ̯mʃtat͡sjo:n]
  • Russian: Международная космическая станция (f), МКС    [mʲɪʐdʊnɐˈrodnəjə kɐˈsmʲit͡ɕɪskəjə ˈstant͡sɨɪ̯ə]
  • Polish: Międzynarodowa Stacja Kosmiczna
  • Swedish:

Interstellar Medium

(Last edited: Friday, 22 September 2023, 6:16 PM) (n.d.). ESO - The Planet, the Galaxy and the Laser. 1999- 2008 ESO. OPIA/Paranal/phot-33a-07.tif.html (n.d.). ESO - The Planet, the Galaxy and the Laser. 1999- 2008 ESO. OPIA/Paranal/phot-33a-07.tif.html

Short Definition:

The interstellar medium (ISM) is a composition of radiation and matter which occurs between star systems, which are compositions of stars orbiting each other. The medium is usually created from various gasses, mostly hydrogen and helium. This matter is a filler between the stars.

Detailed Definition:

The interstellar medium (ISM) is a region filled with gas and dust in between stars. The medium is created when a star dies. As the star collapses into itself, it releases huge amounts of energy and matter at high velocity and high temperature. When this mix encounters patches of interstellar gas, the visible nebulas of interstellar medium are created. The gas is ionized, and space dust blocks certain light waves which. Contrary to common belief, space is not completely empty and is not a full vacuum but is filled with matter such as gas and space dust. The interstellar medium is impactful in formations it is in. Stars which are positioned in the denser areas of ISM supply it with matter and energy through stellar winds or supernovae (the explosion of a star). The inter-influence of stars and ISM formations helps scientists determine the lifespan of given star formations.


This phrase is a conjunction between the words 'interstellar' and 'medium'. The word 'interstellar' comes from combining the prefix 'inter' from Latin for "between" and the word 'stellar' from Latin 'stellaris' meaning "pertaining to a star". The word 'medium' from Latin medium "the middle, midst, center; interval"

Sample Sentence(s):

1. The interstellar medium can be visible with long exposure astrological photography.
2. The Pillars of Creation are a beautiful example of the interstellar medium.


French: milieu interstellaire

German:  interstellares Medium

Italian: mezzo interstellare

Polish: ośrodek międzygwiazdowy

Swedish: interstellärt medium