Representing more than $1 billion in infrastructure, astronomy is Hawaii Island’s leading technology industry. Mauna Kea’s dry and stable atmospheric conditions and dark skies make this the northern hemisphere’s premier site for ground-based astronomy.


The summit of Mauna Kea on the Island of Hawaii hosts the world’s largest astronomical observatory, with telescopes operated by astronomers from eleven countries:

  • Argentina
  • Australia
  • Brazil
  • Canada
  • Chile
  • France
  • Japan
  • Netherlands
  • Taiwan
  • United Kingdom
  • United States


New economies around the world are aspiring to become major players in science and technology, including astronomy.  Currently there are 13 telescopes operating on Mauna Kea enabling observations of the universe from the radio to the ultraviolet part of the electromagnetic spectrum:




The Thirty Meter Telescope Observatory (TMT) Corporation is projected to begin construction on its $1 billion project in 2014 pending permits. India and China have committed to collaborating with and contributing to the TMT along with the U.S., Canada and Japan.


Photo courtesy W.M. Keck Observatory