The Instituto de Astrofísica de Canarias (IAC) is a science and technology center dedicated to research in astronomy and astrophysics. It is a public consortium made up of the Central Administration (Ministry of Economy and Competitiveness), the Canary Islands Autonomous Community, the University of La Laguna and the Higher Council for Scientific Research.
The IAC’s mission is to conduct and promote all types of astrophysics-related research and to disseminate this knowledge. Moreover, the IAC also cooperates in specialised education at University level, offers training to scientists in astrophysics and related fields, and fosters relations with both national and international research communities.
The IAC has its main headquarters in La Laguna in Tenerife, a sea-level site on La Palma, and operates three Spanish Facilities for Science and Technology (ICTS, Instalaciones Científicas y Tecnológicas Singulares): the Observatorios de Canarias on Tenerife and La Palma islands, where more than 30 telescopes and telescopic installations are run by institutions from a large number of countries; the 10.4 m GTC in La Palma, the largest optical telescope in the world, developed under the auspices of the IAC; and a node of the National Supercomputer Center.