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

June 5, 2018

NASA and its partners launched a rocket-borne camera to the edge of space at 2:54 p.m. EDT May 29, 2018, on its third flight to study the Sun. The clarity of images returned is unprecedented and their analysis will provide scientists around the world with clues to one of the biggest questions in heliophysics – why the Sun's atmosphere, or corona, is so much hotter than its surface.

May 31, 2018

To study the most extreme objects in the Universe, astronomers sometimes have to go to some extreme places themselves. Over the past several months, a team of scientists has braved frigid temperatures to set up and observe with a new radio telescope in Greenland.

Latest Science Update

June 1, 2018

Supermassive black holes at the nuclei of most galaxies, including our Milky Way, develop gradually as material accretes onto the seed black hole. The physical processes that drive this growth – the so-called feeding and feedback processes – occur in the vicinity of the galaxy nucleus.

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