IRAP’s scientific objectives concern the study and understanding of the Universe and its contents: the Earth as a planet, its ionized space environment, the sun and its planets, the stars and their planetary systems, the interstellar environment , galaxies, the very first stars and the primordial Big Bang.

With activities of design, construction, integration and operation of instruments on the ground and in space as well as laboratory experiments allowing the characterization of physical processes, IRAP is one of the major poles of ground-space astrophysics in France.

IRAP has numerous collaborations both regionally and internationally with organizations such as CNES, ESA, ESO, NASA, JAXA …
IRAP benefits from numerous fundings through calls for projects, notably within the framework of the National Research Agency (ANR) and the Horizon 2020 program of the European Union.

IRAP was born on January 1, 2011 from the merger of

  • Centre d’Etude Spatiale des Rayonnements (CESR)
  • Laboratoire d’Astrophysique de Toulouse-Tarbes (LATT)
  • a part of the laboratory Dynamique Terrestre et Planétaire (DTP)
  • some researchers of the Laboratory Mécanismes de Transfert Géologique (LMTG)

About 300 persons work at l’IRAP :
– 110 researchers and teachers-researchers,
– 80 persons for research support,
– 50 PhD students
– 50 post-doctoral or contractual positions, as well as many internship students.

Its teams are located on 3 sites: 2 at the Paul Sabatier University in Toulouse (Roche and Belin site) closed to CNES and 1 in Tarbes.