Since its inception in 1856, the University of Michigan Department of Astronomy has been a leader in the fields of astronomy and astrophysics. The Department is particularly strong in extragalactic astronomy and cosmology, star formation, and high-energy astrophysics.
U-M astronomers regularly make new and exciting discoveries. Some of these breakthrough research projects will be featured in a special exhibition Reaching for the Stars, and Beyond: Astronomy at the University of Michigan during the Theme Semester. Michigan Astronomy is also a leader in training the next generation of astronomers. Undergraduate and graduate courses attract increasing numbers of students, many of whom belong to the Student Astronomical Society (SAS). Two new courses were specially developed for non-majors in honor of the Theme Semester. Undergraduate courses benefit from the Angell Hall Observatory and Angell Hall Planetarium.
The University of Michigan is a consortium partner operating the twin 6.5-meter Magellan Telescopes at Cerro Las Campanas, Chile. U-M astronomers have also built sophisticated instruments that further enhance this world-class facility. The Department also operates four research telescopes at other sites: The 1.3 and 2.4-meter telescopes of the MDM (Michigan-Dartmouth-MIT) Observatory located on Kitt Peak in Arizona, the 0.6-meter Curtis Schmidt telescope on Cerro Tololo, Chile, and 26-meter radio telescope on Peach Mountain in Dexter, Michigan.