The Department of Astronomy offers undergraduate and graduate instruction in a wide variety of fields, including theoretical and observational astrophysics; infrared, optical, and radio astronomy; galactic structure and dynamics of stellar systems; high-energy astrophysics and cosmology; and spectroscopy. A considerable amount of research and teaching related to astronomy is done in other units at Berkeley, including the Space Science Laboratory, Lawrence Berkeley Laboratory, and the Physics Department. Various professors in the Chemistry, Earth and Planetary Science, Mathematics, Statistics, and Engineering departments have an active interest in astronomy and are available for consultation.

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  • Image of Campbell Hall, home of the Department of Astronomy:

    Campbell Hall, home of the Department of Astronomy

    This new state-of-the-art facility houses our faculty, members, and our in-house research units, resources, and labs.

  • Image of Astronomy Night: A New Stargazing and Lecture Event!:

    Astronomy Night: A New Stargazing and Lecture Event!

    On the first Thursday of the month come join our department for a lecture and guided stargazing! Visit our events page for full details.

  • Image of Remain Fashionable Anywhere in the Universe:

    Remain Fashionable Anywhere in the Universe

    Check out department merch under our Friends and Fans section!

  • Image of Help Restore Leuschner Observatory!:

    Help Restore Leuschner Observatory!

    Read about the efforts to restore Leuschner Observatory in Department News (Photos Cathy Dausman)

  • Image of Campbell Hall Rooftop Dome Observatory:

    Campbell Hall Rooftop Dome Observatory

    The Rooftop Dome Observatory, featuring the Richard Treffers Telescope, is just one of many department research and observing resources. Photo by Michael O'Callahan Photography.

Prospective Students

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Why Berkeley Astronomy

Find out how UC Berkeley Astronomy can assist in your journey for higher education. More

News from the Nebula

An artist's concept of a blue supergiant star that astronomers believe exploded as a Type Ic supernova detected by the Hubble Space Telescope in 2017. Sixty-five million years ago, the star sat inside a cluster of young stars in the spiral galaxy NGC 3938, perhaps as massive as 50 suns and burning at a furious rate, making it hotter and bluer than our sun. If astronomers are right, after it shed its outer layers of hydrogen and helium, it’s core collapsed, releasing energy that blew the star’s outer layers into space. (Image courtesy of NASA, ESA and J. Olmsted of STScI)

Tracking down a star that disappeared 65 million years ago

Astronomers may finally have tracked down the type of star that explodes with a distinctive but unusual signature: They show no evidence of hydrogen and helium, by far the most abundant elements in the universe. Such explosions have been labeled Type Ic supernovae, and make up some 20 percent of all stars that explode when their cores collapse. Most, however, have been observed at such large distances that astronomers could not pinpoint what was there before the explosion blew it to smithereens. But a team that included UC Berkeley astronomer Alex Filippenko got lucky. More

Friends and Fans

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Get Involved With Astronomy!

Find ways to support and join in on department fun. More