The Institute of Astronomy (IoA) of KU Leuven is a young and vibrant research group of some 60 scientists, engineers and administrative staff. The IoA is partner in several international networks and research projects, involving telescopes at worldwide observatories and various ESA and NASA space missions. The IoA is heavily involved in the organisation of the Master Astronomy & Astrophysics and the Master-after-Master of Space Studies. Outreach, public lectures, and STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering, Mathematics) education activities are important IoA services to society.
The institute is part of the Department of Physics and Astronomy, which conducts research in various domains in modern physics in order to understand the fundamentals of physics. It contains several research units comprising activities in physical acoustics and thermal physics, biophysics, nuclear and radiation physics, semiconductor physics, solid state physics, theoretical physics and astronomy. The department is a member of the Faculty of Science and the Science, Engineering and Technology Group of the KU Leuven, and currently counts about 350 staff members.