I am involved both in instrumentation and pure research projects, with a significant overlap between the two.

Together with my colleague Don Hall, I have developed the HAWAII series of infrared detector arrays, with our industrial partner Teledyne (formerly Rockwell). These detectors were instrumental in bringing infrared astronomy to a level of maturity similar to optical astronomy. We are currently concluding the NSF-funded development of the HAWAII-4RG-15 detector arrays, and are now concentrating on avalanche photodiode devices.

I have built several major instruments:
QUIRC – the largest IR camera in the world, back in 1994.
NIRI – the Gemini Near-Infrared Imager
HiCIAO – the Subaru Hi-contrast Coronographic Imager for Adaptive Optics

I am a co-investigator on the JWST NIRCam science team, and responsible for the GTO projects on exoplanet spectroscopy and interstellar ices.

My astronomical research has recently concentrated on eruptive variability in young stars, and the relationship between such variability and mass outflow
from YSOs.

Selected Recent Publications

Periodic Accretion Instabilities in the Protostar L1634 IRS 7
Klaus W.Hodapp; Rolf Chini, 2015, ApJ 813, 107

The Launch Region of the SVS13 Outflow and Jet
Klaus W. Hodapp; Rolf Chini, 2014, ApJ 794, 169

Eruptive Variable Stars and Outflows in Serpens NW
Klaus W. Hodapp, Rolf Chini, Ramon Watermann, and Roland Lemke, 2012, ApJ 744, 56

σ Orionis IRS1 A AND B: A Binary Containing a Proplyd
Klaus W. Hodapp, Christof Iserlohe, Bringfried Stecklum, and Alfred Krabbe, 2009, ApJ, 701, L100


I am teaching both in the UH Manoa astronomy graduate program and in the UH Hilo undergraduate astronomy program.

My UH Manoa graduate course, ASTR 634, offers a broad overview of the technologies involved in astronomical instrumentation, with an emphasis on optical and infrared detectors, optics, and cryogenic design. Click here for course material.

The UH Hilo undergraduate course (ASTR 450) is part  of a 3-course series on instrumentation, and focuses on detector technology with an element of laboratory experiments.  Click here for course material.


Besides my research and teaching activities, I am serving the IfA in my role as Associate Director of the IfA division in Hilo. Since being established as a division of the IfA in 2000, the IfA Hilo has grown into a well functioning branch of the IfA, concentrating on instrumentation and technology development.

  • American Astronomical Society



  • JWST NIRCam Science Team Co-Investigator Sub-contract
  • Detector Characterization for the Subaru IRD, NOAJ contract


Graduate Students

  • Laurie Chu
  • Robert Thornton

Astronomer Emeritus
Ph.D. 1984 University of Heidelberg, Germany
  • JWST NIRCam GTO: Spectroscopy of spatially separated exoplanets
  • JWST NIRCam GTO: Dust and Ice in Molecular Cores
IfA Hawaii island, Hilo 211
(808) 932-2313(808) 932-2313