Kirkwood Observatory

Visit the Kirkwood Observatory

Located at the edge of campus between the woods and where Indiana Avenue meets 4th street, this building is the most obvious and accessible of our facilities. It houses a 0.3 meter (12 inch) refracting telescope which is staffed for free public viewing each Wednesday evening, March through November, when classes are in session. If the weather is clear, the observatory will be open shortly after sunset. No reservations are necessary.

(For updated information on the status of our open house, check the Kirkwood Schedule Page and review the event notice.)

Take a virtual tour of Kirkwood Observatory

A solar telescope

Kirkwood Observatory also houses a solar telescope for viewing the Sun. The telescope gives us a close-up view of sunspots and solar flares and prominences as well as a look at the solar spectrum. The solar telescope is used for teaching purposes, and is also open monthly for public viewing, hosted by our undergraduate students. Solar viewing times are usually on the first Saturday of each month, weather permitting. Follow us on Twitter @iuastro for alerts about when the solar telescope will be open.