High-energy astrophysics is the study of energetic astronomical phenomena that radiate X-rays or gamma-rays, and/or produce relativistic particles. A number of satellite-borne and ground-based observatories support this active and wide ranging field. Also included in this subject area are experiments for the detection of neutrinos, cosmic-rays, and gravitational waves. Sources of high-energy emission range from compact objects including neutron stars and black holes, to stellar coronae, supernova remnants, and clusters of galaxies. Transient and explosive events such as novae, supernova, gamma-ray bursts, and mergers of compact objects are also of intense current interest.
Columbia scientists are involved in the observations and analysis of data from all of the major NASA and international high-energy missions, and conduct supporting radio and optical observations. Theorists are modeling the relevant high-energy processes. Columbia faculty develop instrumentation for new satellites, and are participants gravitational wave experiments.