Harvard University astronomers and Smithsonian Institution astronomers explore the cosmos together. The combination of the Harvard College Observatory (HCO) and the Smithsonian Astrophysical Observatory (SAO) is known as the Harvard-Smithsonian Center for Astrophysics (CfA).

News Releases

August 14, 2018

GMTO Corporation (GMTO) today announced the start of hard rock excavation for the Giant Magellan Telescope's massive concrete pier and the foundations for the telescope's enclosure on its site at Las Campanas Observatory in Chile. The work will be performed by Minería y Montajes Conpax (known as Conpax), a construction services company that has previously performed site work for other observatories in Chile.

August 3, 2018

When NASA's Parker Solar Probe launches into space from the Kennedy Space Center, it will begin its journey to the Sun, our nearest star. The Parker Solar Probe will travel almost 90 million miles and eventually enter through the Sun's outer atmosphere to encounter a dangerous environment of intense heat and solar radiation. During this harrowing journey, it will fly closer to the Sun than any other human-made object.

Latest Science Update

August 10, 2018

About twenty-five percent of young stars in our galaxy form in clustered environments, and stars in a cluster are often close enough to each other to affect the way they accrete gas and grow.

SI Specific Information

SI-specific information regarding the government shutdown may be found at alerts.si.edu. SAO staff are encouraged to review the website for updated information