The thrust areas of research in planetary sciences is the interaction with solar radiation and solar wind with different Solar system objects (eg., Planets, planetary satelites satellites, Comets). The focus is on the processes occuring on the surface, in the atmosphere, ionosphere, and magnetosphere of planetary bodies, such as dayglow and auroral emissions, photochemistry, solar flares and their impact on planetary processes, solar wind  and its interaction with planetary surfaces and atmospheres,  as well as space plasma physics. The above studies are carried out using multi-wavelength observations (X-ray, Ultraviolet, Visible, Infrared and Radio), particle observations (ions and neutrals), and Monte-Carlo modelling of the charge particle degradation in planetary atmospheres.

Broadly, the research activities can be classified in to the following major themes:

  1. Development of scientific payloads (instruments) for planetary and space missions of India and the analysis of the science data from these instruments.

  2. Theoretical modelling of phenomena occurring on planets, comets and moons

  3. Multi-wavelength (X-ray, Ultraviolet  Visible, Infrared and Radio) observations using space-based and ground-based telescopes.

  4. Charged and neutral particle observations from planetary bodies.