About Us

research with professional astronomers

The IfA REU program provides undergraduates who are considering a career in science with the opportunity to engage in research with professional astronomers working on cutting-edge problems in astrophysics. Students will be full-time research assistants to a faculty mentor at the Institute and will work on specific aspects of an ongoing research program. Our intensive 10 week REU program has the goal that each student will publish a first-author research paper in a refereed journal based on their summer work.

The REU is part of the Institute for Astronomy, University of Hawaii

Located in Hawaii

The Hawaiian Islands (Hawaiian: Mokupuni o Hawai’i) are an archipelago of eight major islands, several atolls, numerous smaller islets, and seamounts in the North Pacific Ocean, extending some 1,500 miles (2,400 kilometers) from the island of Hawaiʻi in the south to northernmost Kure Atoll. The offices, observatories, labs, classrooms of the IfA span three of them.


During the last thirty years, the state of Hawai‘i has become the most sought-after location in the world for the construction of large ground-based telescopes. The focal points for this construction are the 3,000-meter peak of Haleakalā on Maui and the 4,200-meter peak of Mauna Kea on the island of Hawai‘i (the “Big Island”). The remarkable clarity, dryness, and stillness of the air above these isolated high-altitude sites led to the commissioning by the University of Hawai‘i first of the Mees Solar Observatory at Haleakalā on the island of Maui in 1963 and then of the 2.2-meter Telescope on Mauna Kea on the Big Island of Hawai‘i in 1970.

Hawaii is like no place on earth

While you are here you can explore the Islands of Aloha.

Home to the world’s most active volcanoes, the only royal palace in the U.S. and the welcoming aloha spirit.
Discover the glimmering ocean, emerald valleys and golden sands; get lost in the spiritual beauty of the hula and find out how the warmth of Hawaii’s people wonderfully complement the islands’ perfect temperatures. 

Institute for Astronomy

We are one of the largest university astronomy programs in the world.