Current Mission


Leverage the people and instrumentation that compose the facility …

(1) to design and execute research projects relating to astronomy; and

(2) to develop and deliver outreach events to the campus and broader community; and

(3) to build and maintain a strong relationship with the UMBC Astronomy Club.


Research Projects

Through working with campus faculty and staff, we aim to design and execute research projects relating to a variety of astronomical subjects (a) spectro-polarimetry, (b) simulation of cometary photometry, (c) classification of stellar spectra, and (d) gamma-ray event detection.


Update: Starting in September 2022, some funding was secured to support various modernization projects. Completion of these projects will enable ongoing and future research projects as well as demonstrate a renewed understanding of the facility.


Outreach Events

The director will develop and deliver informal lectures on topics related to astronomy at least once per month. These events are traditionally titled “Open Houses” and are open to the broader community. This year, all advertising will be limited to myUMBC and promotional items distributed around campus. When atmospheric conditions are appropriate, the Open House may include a star-gazing or even telescope-driven portion.

Upon request and depending on the state of the Universe, additional events may be held around astronomical events such as meteor showers, eclipses, or special alignments of celestial bodies.


UMBC Astronomy Club

This year, the observatory intern is an officer in the UMBC Astronomy Club and the observatory director is the club advisor. We aim to engage with the astronomy club by being present at meetings of the UMBC Astronomy Club as well as inviting members of the club to speak at Open House events. Furthermore, the director will host an astronomy-themed journal club and invite UMBC Physics faculty members to share their expertise with interested club members.