A life support system is any natural or human-engineered system that furthers the life of the biosphere in a sustainable fashion. The fundamental attribute of life support systems is that together they provide all of the sustainable needs required for continuance of life.


There is a growing need for a knowledge source that presents authoritative, comprehensive, and integrated approaches to the science, technology, and management of natural and human resources necessary for life support.


"The Encyclopedia of Life Support Systems (EOLSS) presents a comprehensive, authoritative, and integrated body of knowledge of life support systems. It is a forward-looking publication, designed as a global guide to professional practice, education, ...


An encyclopedia is an alphabetically or thematically structured collection of contributions from all branches of an art, a technology, or some combination of these that provides a comprehensive treatment of the intended subject.


The EOLSS is designed to appeal to a wide spectrum of users - from the merely curious to those seeking in-depth knowledge. To satisfy these, the EOLSS Contents have the following characteristics ..


At present, as never before, the future of life on our planet has become a matter of great concern. We are confronted with several warnings emphasizing the growing fragility of the Earth's life support systems.

Body of Knowledge

The body of knowledge has been defined in terms units called Themes. A theme has three distinctive levels of writings: Theme Level, Topic Level and Article Level, with an increasing depth of specialization.


EOLSS Contributions are written at different levels of hierarchy: Theme Level Writings, Topic Level Writings, Article Level Writings. The Theme-level chapter represents an overview that is addressed to a broad readership.