May 24, 2022

Controlled Vocabulary: “The Unified Astronomy Thesaurus” (Creation and Maintenance)

The following paper was presented at the Astronomical Data Analysis Software and Systems XXIII, September 29-October 3, 2013 and recently made available via arXiv.


The Unified Astronomy Thesaurus


Alberto Accomazz
Harvard-Smithsonian Center for Astrophysics

Norman Gray
School of Physics and Astronomy, University of Glasgow

Chris Erdmann
Harvard-Smithsonian Center for Astrophysics

Chris Biemesderfer
American Astronomical Society

Katie Frey
Harvard-Smithsonian Center for Astrophysics

Justin Soles
School of Information Studies, McGill University




The Unified Astronomy Thesaurus (UAT) is an open, interoperable and community-supported thesaurus which unifies the existing divergent and isolated Astronomy & Astrophysics vocabularies into a single high-quality, freely-available open thesaurus formalizing astronomical concepts and their inter-relationships. The UAT builds upon the existing IAU Thesaurus with major contributions from the astronomy portions of the thesauri developed by the Institute of Physics Publishing, the American Institute of Physics, and SPIE. We describe the effort behind the creation of the UAT and the process through which we plan to maintain the document updated through broad community participation.

Direct to Full Text Paper (4 pages; PDF)

Direct to Unified Astronomy Thesaurus ||| Browse Thesaurus/Download Data
Included visual browse tool.

See Also:  A New Thesaurus Created for the Astronomy Community (infoDOCKET Post From January 25, 2013)

About Gary Price

Gary Price ( is a librarian, writer, consultant, and frequent conference speaker based in the Washington D.C. metro area. Before launching INFOdocket, Price and Shirl Kennedy were the founders and senior editors at ResourceShelf and DocuTicker for 10 years. From 2006-2009 he was Director of Online Information Services at, and is currently a contributing editor at Search Engine Land.