About HAO

HAO Mission and Vision

The High Altitude Observatory (HAO) of the National Center for Atmospheric research (NCAR) is located in Boulder, Colorado, at the foot of the Rocky Mountains. HAO conducts research and provides community support and facilities in the following areas: Atmosphere, Ionosphere and Magnetosphere (AIM), Long-term Solar Variability (LSV), and Solar Transients and Space Weather (STSW).

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Boulder, Colorado

It is the mission of HAO to understand the behavior of the Sun and its impact on the Earth, to support, enhance, and extend the capabilities of the university community and the broader scientific community, nationally and internationally, and to foster the transfer of knowledge and technology.

HAO in the CG1 building
HAO in the Center Green 1 building.

It is HAO's vision to:

  • Perform world-leading science to understand fundamentally and with predictive capability the sources and nature of solar and geospace variability;
  • Provide scientific leadership and facilities to serve the wider community in common pursuit of these science objectives, and both support and benefit from the NCAR community;
  • Support the education and training of early-career researchers in solar-terrestrial physics and instrumentation;
  • Provide advocacy for solar-terrestrial physics, promoting its results, and articulating its societal importance, to the rest of NCAR, the NSF, the university community, and the public.

Topics of interest include the solar interior, lower solar atmosphere, corona and heliosphere, terrestrial and planetary atmosphere, and ionosphere and magnetosphere. Radiative transfer, hydrodynamics, magnetohydrodynamics, radiation hydrodynamics, and plasma physics are pursued for both their fundamental physical interests and their applications in the above areas of research.