Institute for Astronomy

University of Hawaiʻi

Latest News & Updates

UH discovery among first images captured by Webb Space Telescope

NASA and The White House have released the very first image taken with NASA’s flagship James Webb Space Telescope (JWST). The target is an enormous cluster of galaxies that was originally discovered by researchers at the IfA.

Pioneering UH female astronomer featured in new book on navigating male-dominated field

IfA's own Ann Boesgaard tells her story in "The Sky Is for Everyone"

UH astronomers mentor Maui keiki for future science careers

From May 30 through June 3, HI-STAR hosted its annual summer program for middle and high school students at the UH Maui College campus.

IfA Graduate Student named ARCS Scholar of the Year

IfA doctoral candidate Miles Lucas was named one of the ARCS Foundation Honolulu Chapter’s 2022 Scholars of the Year.

IfA astronomer receives UH Regent’s Research Award

IfA astronomer Xudong Sun has been awarded a 2022 Regents’ Medal for Excellence in Research.

AstroDay makes full return after 2-year hiatus

Scientists and educators from across the islands made an in-person return to the popular AstroDay event held at Prince Kūhiō Plaza in Hilo on May 14, a first in more than 2 years.

What we do


Our Astronomers  study everything from the Sun to the structure of the Universe, using the best observing sites in the world


We create cutting-edge instrumentation and technology, and innovative surveys to study the ever-changing night sky


Our world-class degree programs include a PhD in Astronomy, an undergraduate BA in Astronomy, and a BS in Astrophysics


Our extensive public outreach program brings astronomy to our community, and our news stories highlight the latest discoveries

Our Vision

To be the premier institution for astronomy research and education, locally, nationally, and internationally, that is respectful of the local culture.

Our Mission

The University of Hawai‘i is located in the most diverse community and environment in the world. We are a globally recognized center of learning and research, with a kuleana to serve the people and places of Hawaiʻi and our neighbors in the Pacific.  The IfA’s mission is to advance scientific understanding of the origin and nature of the universe, by conducting high-impact research, developing new technologies to observe the cosmos, defending the planet from potentially hazardous asteroids, and sharing knowledge of astronomy through education and outreach, in particular engaging with the native Hawaiian community.

Our Values

  • Valuing science as a way to illuminate our place in the universe
  • Maintaining the integrity of the scientific process
  • Revering the natural environment, including the dark skies
  • Respecting Native Hawaiian practices and philosophies
  • Affirming the international character of academic research
Aerial view of telescopes on Maunakea

Astronomy in Hawaii

Institute for Astronomy