News and Events

Friday, August 11, 2017

The Department of Astronomy will hold the August 21, 2017 solar eclipse event at the Sunwheel. The event will begin at 1:20 PM, and will continue until the end of the eclipse. Astronomy Professor Daniela Calzetti and Mr. Tom Whitney of the Astronomy Association ( will be hosting the event, and they expect to have four solar telescopes on site. The Sunwheel is located south of McGuirk Alumni Stadium, just off Rocky Hill Road (Amity Street) about one-quarter mile south of University Drive.


Monday, July 31, 2017

Astronomers train an "Earth-sized" telescope, including UMass Amherst's LMT, on our galactic center.

Monday, July 31, 2017

Theoretical astronomy professor Neal Katz has received a Fulbright Scholarship award for studies in South Africa.

Friday, June 16, 2017

The public is invited to witness the summer solstice sunrise and sunset among the standing stones of the Sunwheel on Wednesday, June 21 at 5 a.m. and 7:30 p.m.

Wednesday, June 7, 2017

Professor James Lowenthal (Smith College) and Professor Min Yun (UMass Amherst) did a press release at the 2017 AAS Summer meeting in Austin, TX, today, as prepared by the Space Telescope Science Institute (STScI). Professors Daniel Wang and Grant Wilson (both from UMass Amherst) are also collaborators on this project.

Tuesday, June 6, 2017

Professor Daniel Wang gave an invited talk on the central massive black hole of our Galaxy at the AAS meeting on June 6, 2017.

Wednesday, May 10, 2017

Rob Hunt, a UMass Film Studies student, made a documentary film about Kevin Harrington ('16) this year for his senior thesis. This film won the Michael S. Roif Award for the Best Documentary Film

Friday, May 5, 2017

For the second year in a row, an Astronomy major has been awarded the 21st Century Leader Award. It was recently announced that Ryan Boyden, a double major in Astronomy and Physics will receive this prestigious award. Congratulations to Ryan, and also to Professor Stella Offner, who mentored Ryan in his research.

Tuesday, May 2, 2017

Tara Dowd has been awarded this year's David J. Van Blerkom Research Scholarship in Astronomy. Here is a description of the Scholarship: An endowment fund established by Janet Van Blerkom. The purpose of the fund is to endow undergraduate research scholarships in the Department of Astronomy in memory of her husband, David J. Van Blerkom, Professor of Astronomy at the University of Massachusetts. Professor Van Blerkom came to UMass as aPostdoctoral Fellow in 1969, joined the faculty in 1970, served as Chair of the Astronomy Program from 1980-1999, and then continued on the faculty until 2001. This scholarship fund is awarded based on academic excellence to a University of Massachusetts undergraduate and supports a research internship for that undergraduate.