Theoretical Astrophysics

Theoretical Astrophysics: Introduction

​​​​​​​​​​Faculty Affiliation

Arts and Science

Degree Programs

The Canadian Institute for Theoretical Astrophysics (CITA) does not offer an independent graduate degree program. ​Students interested in theoretical astrophysics are encouraged to enrol in the graduate programs offered by cognate departments such as Astronomy and Astrophysics, Chemistry, and Physics.

All CITA faculty hold cross-appointments in one or more of these departments; students seeking research supervision by CITA faculty are welcome to inquire. CITA research fellows and visitors are also encouraged to work with graduate students.


Established in 1984, the Canadian Institute for Theoretical Astrophysics (CITA) is a national institute specializing in theoretical astrophysics. CITA is supported by the University of Toronto, the Natural Sciences and Engineering Research Council of Canada (NSERC), and the Canadian Institute for Advanced Research (CIFAR).

CITA owns an extensive and powerful network of workstations, including a 200-node, 1600-core Beowulf computing cluster. CITA also uses the 30,000 core computing cluster housed at the SciNet consortium at the University of Toronto.

The research activities at CITA span most of the areas of modern theoretical astrophysics, including accretion disks, active galactic nuclei, general relativity, and gravitational waves, cosmology and cosmological aspects of particle physics, the cosmic microwave background, gravitational lenses, dark matter, galaxy formation, galaxy structure and evolution, dynamics of stellar systems, physics and chemistry of the interstellar medium, star formation, stellar evolution, novae, supernovae, compact objects and gamma-ray bursts, nucleosynthesis, solar system formation and dynamics, and comets.

CITA has the support of over 50 faculty members from about 20 Canadian universities. CITA also maintains a rotating complement of more than 30 postdoctoral fellows and research associates, and hosts an active program of visitors from other universities. The theoretical interests of many CITA staff are complemented by observational research. CITA researchers have active observing programs at a wide variety of ground-based and satellite telescopes in many different wavelength bands.

Contact and Address

Telephone: (416) 978-6879
Fax: (416) 978-3921

Canadian Institute for Theoretical Astrophysics (CITA) / L'institut canadien d'astrophysique thorique (ICAT)
University of Toronto
Room 1403, McLennan Physical Laboratories
Toronto, Ontario M5S 3H8

Theoretical Astrophysics: Graduate Faculty

Full Members

Bond, J Richard - BSc, MS, PhD, FRSC, FRS
Martin, Peter - BSc, MSc, PhD, FRSC, OC
Murray, Norman - BSc, PhD, CRC
Pen, Ue-Li - BSc, PhD (Interim Director)
Pfeiffer, Harald - MSc, PhD, CRC
Thompson, Christopher - BSc, PhD