VERITAS, the Very Energetic Radiation Imaging Telescope Array System, is a TeV gamma-ray observatory located in Southern Arizona composed of four 12m-diameter imaging atmospheric Cherenkov telescopes. VERITAS came online as a full array in Fall 2007, and features high sensitivity over a wide range of energies (from 100 GeV to over 30 TeV). This TeV observatory effectively complements the Fermi Gamma-ray Space Telescope.

The VERITAS Group at Barnard College and Columbia University in New York is part of the VERITAS collaboration, which operates the most sensitive instrument for detecting TeV gamma rays in the Northern Hemisphere. The VERITAS Group at Barnard College, led by Reshmi Mukherjee, consists of undergraduate students from Barnard, graduate students from Columbia, and post-doctoral research scientists. The Barnard Group works in close collaboration with the VERITAS Group at Nevis Labs and Columbia University, led by Brian Humensky. Together, we carry out scientific research on galactic and extragalactic sources in the GeV and TeV energy bands with data collected from Fermi and VERITAS.

Also, both Barnard and Columbia groups are actively involved in the development of the next-generation ground-based gamma-ray observatory, the Cherenkov Telescope Array (CTA). Together with the CTA-U.S. members and CTA-INFN groups in Italy, we are involved in the upgrade activities of the prototype Schwarzschild-Couder Telescope, the first of its kind featuring a dual-mirror design for superior imaging resolution. 

Research Opportunities

Barnard undergraduate researcher with pSCT
Barnard undergraduate researcher with pSCT
Undergraduate Research at Barnard and Columbia

Every year, the Summer Research Institute facilitates funding and supportive
programming for faculty-mentored student research at Barnard and Columbia University.


Gunes Senturk, a graduate researcher
Gunes Senturk, a graduate researcher
Graduate Research

During their Ph.D. research, students work closely with a faculty sponsor and other researchers. Research opportunities are available with the VERITAS and CTA Groups at Columbia and Barnard.


Tours and Barnard students testing for water leaks in the Cloud Chamber
Tours and Barnard students testing for water leaks in the Cloud Chamber
Astroparticle Physics Summer School

This program is an exchange between students from New York and Tours, France. It is designed to give the students a chance to exchange scientific ideas, set up potential collaborations, and engage in cultural immersion.


Columbia Affiliations
VERITAS research at Barnard College & Columbia University is supported by the U.S. National Science Foundation