ASTRON is the Netherlands Institute for Radio Astronomy and is part of the Netherlands Organization for Scientific Research (NWO). Its mission is to enable discoveries in radio astronomy. Its headquarters are in Dwingeloo.

making discoveries
in radio astronomy

ASTRON works with universities all over the world to discover the universe by developing new and innovative technologies, operating world-class radio astronomy facilities, and conducting fundamental astronomy research. ASTRON engineers and astronomers have an outstanding international reputation for new technologies and fundamental science in galactic and extra-galactic astronomy.

ASTRON's programme comprises three main elements:

  • Operating groundbreaking observing facilities such as the Westerbork Synthesis Radio Telescope and LOFAR.
  • Conducting fundamental astronomical research using the ASTRON facilities together with a wide range of other telescopes around the world and space-based instruments.
  • A strong technological development programme, including innovative instrumentation for existing telescopes and new technologies for future facilities. The Square Kilometre Array will be the world's largest and most sensitive radio telescope with a reception area of about one square kilometre.

Technological development

Discoveries in astronomy are closely linked to innovation in technology. The scientific technology programme is aimed at both providing innovative instrumentation for use at current observing facilities and laying the groundwork for future generations of telescopes and signal processing instruments. ASTRON will create facilities for the design, prototyping and qualification of:

  • Low-noise cryogenic radio receiver systems
  • Digital electronics at very high speeds
  • Antenna array
  • Advanced instrumentation for use in optical and infrared wavelengths
  • Algorithms and software engineering for instrumentation control and data visualisation.

Contact details

Old Hoogeveensedijk 4
7991 PD Dwingeloo