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ASTRON is responsible for the operations of the Westerbork Synthesis Radio Telescope (WSRT) and the Low Frequency Array (LOFAR).


The astronomical research at ASTRON is closely aligned with the strengths of our facilities LOFAR and WSRT-APERTIF.

Diversity & Sustainability

ASTRON is committed to achieving a fair, welcoming, and sustainable work environment for all.


Met onze radiotelescopen nemen wij de meest zwakke signalen uit het heelal waar. Daardoor zijn zij kwetsbaar voor elektromagnetische storing. Met het tijdig treffen van de juiste maatregelen kan storing worden voorkomen.

Wireless Data Lab

Draadloze techniek lijkt vanzelfsprekend, maar de ontwikkeling ervan gaat niet vanzelf. Daarom hebben we bij ASTRON een proeftuin ingericht; het Wireless Data Lab.

Making discoveries
in radio astronomy

ASTRON is the Netherlands Institute for Radio Astronomy, and is part of the Institutes organisation of NWO.

New calibration technique circumvents Earth’s ionosphere

An international team of researchers has developed a new calibration technique to circumvent disturbances of Earth’s ionosphere.

Published by the editorial team, 6 May 2024

ASTRON has turned 75!

75 years ago today, SRZM (Stichting Radiostraling van Zon en Melkweg/Netherlands Foundation for Radio Astronomy) was founded. This organization would later become ASTRON.

Published by the editorial team, 23 April 2024

ASTRON launches database of female experts

Today marks International Women’s Day. This year’s theme is ‘Inspire Inclusion’.

Published by the editorial team, 8 March 2024

LOFAR ERIC: Distributed Research Infrastructure for European Astronomical Research Launched

LOFAR ERIC (European Research Infrastructure Consortium) has been officially launched at its first Council meeting today. The world-leading LOFAR (LOw Frequency ARray) Distributed Research Infrastructure has already revolutionised low-frequency radio astronomy research, resulting in an avalanche of scientific publications in the past decade. LOFAR ERIC is now a single legal entity across the European Union. The LOFAR ERIC statutory seat is in Dwingeloo, the Netherlands, hosted by NWO-I/ASTRON (Netherlands Institute for Radio Astronomy; the original designer of LOFAR).

Published by the editorial team, 22 January 2024

Telescope quartet reveals surprising statistics of cosmic flashes

Dutch astronomers prove last piece of gas feedback-feeding loop of black hole

Super sharp images reveal a possible hypernebula powered by a source of fast radio bursts

Astronomers discover ultra-fast radio bursts in archived data

ERC Starting Grant Awarded to Dr. Aditya Parthasarathy


Birth and Evolution of Fast Radio Bursts

© JvL

Fast radio bursts (FRBs) are some of the brightest radio emitters in our entire Universe. What causes this extraordinary luminosity? Which objects generate the bursts? Our curiosity is undiminished. These question continue to challenge us, due to the combination of knowing only few sources, and not understanding the subtle effects in telescope sensitivity. We recently presented the first inclusion of the entire set of one-off FRBs from CHIME/FRB Catalog 1 in frbpoppy, the comprehensive, open-science FRB population synthesis code.

We run this code on the national supercomputer Snellius (top left). That is especially fitting because much of our result is based on accurate modeling of the dispersion measure -- the difference in speed of light at different densities and radio frequencies -- that is a proxy for distance. The Dutch astronomer Willebrord Snellius did much seminal work on the refraction of light (top right), which is based on the same fundamental principle.

From the contribution of the host galaxies to this dispersion we conclude the FRB progenitors are born in the host disk (bottom left). We show that 4 thousand one-off FRBs go off every second between Earth and a redshift of 1, and find strong evidence this FRB birth rates evolve with the star formation rate of the Universe. This population-based evidence solidly aligns with magnetar-like burst sources, and we conclude FRBs are emitted by neutron stars (bottom right).

ASTRON daily image.

Open Dag: 6 oktober/Open Day: October 6th

Sun 06 Oct 2024

English follows Dutch   Bezoek ons tijdens onze open dag op 6 oktober Hoe klinkt een dode ster? Hoe maak je onzichtbaar licht zichtbaar? Hoe werkt een zwart gat? Waarom kun je met een radiotelescoop terug in de tijd kijken? Achter al deze en nog veel meer interessante dingen kom je tijdens onze open dag […]


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