The IAC is an international research centre. Administratively, it is constituted as a Public Consortium, created by statute in 1982, with involvement from the Spanish Government, the Government of the Canary Islands, the University of La Laguna and Spain's Science Research Council (CSIC). Its research topics include most areas of astrophysics: solar physics, the structure and evolution of stars, the interstellar medium, galactic astrophysics, cosmology and the structure of the Universe, telescope design and construction, high spatial resolution techniques, infrared and optical instrumentation, and astronomical space projects. The IAC hosts more than 400 workers, including researchers, engineers, supporting staff, and PhD students. The headquarters accommodate offices and infrastructures for technological development (electronic, optical, and technical drawing laboratories, mechanics workshops, cleanrooms, etc.). It also comprises the Astrophysics Center in La Palma, the Observatorio del Teide (OT) and the Observatorio del Roque de los Muchachos (ORM), where more than 60 international research institutions from 20 countries have installed telescopes for different science programs.
The IAC has an extended experience in solar physics research and in the development of instrumentation. Examples of successful instruments for solar observations are TIP (Tenerife Infrared Polarimeter), installed initially at the VTT, and presently at the 1.5 metre GREGOR telescope in OT; the Imaging Magnetograph eXperiment (IMaX, instrument that flew on board the balloon Sunrise, built by a Spanish consortium coordinated by the IAC); and the spectrograph GRIS installed at GREGOR. The IAC also participated in the design, construction and test of the instrument PHI for the Solar Orbiter mission. It has participated in numerous EU projects, and coordinated projects like the Training Network Solaire, the Conceptual Design of the European Solar Telescope, SOLARNET, GREST and PRE-EST, among others. The IAC is responsible for the optical design of the European Solar Telescope (EST) as well as for its spectrographs, equipped with novel integral field units. It is the coordinating institution and hosts the EST Project Office.
Dr. Manuel Collados Vera
Instituto de Astrofísica de Canarias
C/ Vía Láctea, s/n
E38205 - La Laguna, Tenerife