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Astrophysics Summer School

Shooting star over a mountain range and lake

Our Astrophysics Summer School will introduce you to some of the most exciting topics in current astrophysics research such as planet and star formation, galaxy evolution and cosmology.

In response to the UK Government’s recent announcements with regards to COVID-19 (Coronavirus), we have decided to cancel our Summer Schools for 2020.

We understand this may be disappointing but ensuring the safety and wellbeing of our students and staff has to be our priority.

We will be updating these webpages in due course with information about Summer Schools for 2021. If you have any questions, please get in touch by emailing

We appreciate your understanding in these unprecedented times and we hope to see you in Cardiff in the future.

Cardiff University hosts renowned experts who will introduce you to these subjects, giving you the knowledge and the tools to perform experiments on state-of-the-art astronomical data.

On the programme, you will:

  • learn how to measure the mass of a black hole
  • detect outflowing gas towards accreting young stars
  • identify eventual sites of planet formation
  • gain an introduction to the principles of infrared/sub-millimeter photon detection
  • visit the labs where ground-breaking instrumentation is being built at Cardiff University.

The School of Physics and Astronomy at Cardiff University has continued to play a key role in the development of revolutionary space missions such as the far-infrared Herschel Space Observatory as well as ground based facilities, providing instrumentation to some of the best (sub-) millimeter telescopes around the world such as the JCMT in Hawaii, or the IRAM 30m telescope in Spain.

Please note, the contents of this course are still subject to change and may be cancelled in the event of low turnout.

Preliminary schedule

Please note this schedule is subject to change.

July 2021Arrival in Cardiff (pick up from Cardiff Airport and Heathrow Airport provided)
 Networking event
 Welcome lecture and orientation scavenger hunt
 Sub-mm astronomy lecture and python and data analysis lab
 Astronomy tools lab
 Planet formation lecture and lab
 Radiative transfer
Star formation lecture and lab
 Field trips and free time
 Free time
 Galaxy lecture and lab
 Cosmology lecture and lab  
 Presentation skills lecture
Interstellar dust lecture and lab
 Instrumentation lecture and lab visit
 Group presentations

Final Gala Dinner
 Departure from Cardiff (drop off to Cardiff Airport and Heathrow Airport provided)

The standard fee for our two week Summer School is £1,995.

This includes tuition fees, accommodation, 10 meals per week (breakfast and lunch, Monday to Friday), airport pick up and drop off from Cardiff Airport and Heathrow Airport on fixed dates and excursions organised by Cardiff University (such as Stonehenge and industrial visits).

Excellence scholarship

One student on each Summer School will receive an Excellence Scholarship worth £1,000. The scholarship is merit-based and will consider your academic profile, work experience and personal statement.

Partner institutions

Partner institutions will receive a reduction in feeds depending on how many students will be attending the Summer School. Our partnership agreement contract will include more information about this. Alternatively please contact us with any questions and we will be happy to help.

Your visit

In addition to a valuable learning experience, you will stay in city centre accommodation, embark on two cultural trips within the UK and be invited to entertaining social events in our vibrant Welsh capital. This is an opportunity to experience British culture with new friends from across the globe.

Both Wales and the UK are uniquely rich in history, architecture and culture and our Summer Schools are sure to give you unrivalled personal, social and academic benefits which will enhance any CV or résumé.

Applying for a short-term study visa

Some students will need to apply for a short-term study visa before travelling to the UK while others can apply on entry to the UK at immigration control. For the latest information on short-term visas head to Home Office guidance.

Contact us

If you have any queries about this Summer School, the academic content or how you can prepare for this course, please get in touch with Sophie Lewis in our International Summer School team.

Physical Sciences and Engineering International Summer School