astronomical research institution headquartered in Cambridge, Massachusetts, U.S., on the campus of Harvard University. The CfA was created in 1973 by reorganizing the Harvard College Observatory and the Smithsonian Astrophysical Observatory under one director. The Harvard-Smithsonian Center for Astrophysics is organized into seven scientific divisionsatomic and molecular physics, high-energy astrophysics, optical and infrared astronomy, planetary sciences, radio and geoastronomy, solar and stellar physics, and theoretical astrophysicsand an education department. Some of its activities and staff are managed by the Smithsonian Institution, some by Harvard-administered interests, and some in combination. The CfA's planetary sciences division is home to the International Astronomical Union's Central Bureau for Astronomical Telegrams, which is responsible for disseminating information worldwide on transient astronomical phenomena such as new comets, novas, and supernovas, and its Minor Planet Center, which collects, checks, and disseminates observations and orbital data on asteroids and comets, including near-Earth objects. Major research emphases at the CfA include space-based X-ray astronomy, ground-based gamma-ray astronomy, the application of computers to problems of theoretical astrophysics, and the development of very long baseline interferometry techniques for radio astronomy. Observational facilities of the CfA exist on the grounds of the Harvard College Observatory, where its original 38-cm (15-inch) refractor is housed. The centre also operates optical- and radio-astronomy facilities at the Oak Ridge Observatory Station, about 48 km (30 miles) west of Cambridge; a submillimetre-wave telescope at Amundsen-Scott South Pole Station; and the Fred Lawrence Whipple Observatory on Mount Hopkins, south of Tucson, Arizona, where the Multiple Mirror Telescope is operated jointly by the CfA and the University of Arizona. In addition, the CfA provides scientific management for the National Aeronautics and Space Administration's space-based Chandra X-ray Observatory. Additional reading Separate histories of the Harvard College Observatory and the Smithsonian Astrophysical Observatory are given, respectively, by Bessie Zaban Jones and Lyle Gifford Boyd, The Harvard College Observatory: The First Four Directorships, 18391919 (1971); and Bessie Zaban Jones, Lighthouse of the Skies: The Smithsonian Astrophysical Observatory: Background and History, 18461955 (1965). A special issue of the Journal for the History of Astronomy, vol. 21, part 1, no. 63 (February 1990), covers the combined history of the two institutions and their merger. Edward Charles Pickering's influence on the Harvard College Observatory is discussed in Howard Plotkin, Edward C. Pickering and the Endowment of Scientific Research in America, 18771918, Isis 69(246):4457 (March 1978). David H. DeVorkin

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