VAO Education and Public Outreach Partners

VAO Institutions

Education and Public Outreach Institutions


WorldWide Telescope

WorldWide Telescope (WWT) provides free access to visualization software that allows anyone to access astronomical images from the most powerful ground- and space-based telescopes. The VAO is partnering with WWT to bring formal education material into the classroom.

The WorldWide Telescope was developed out of the work from Jim Gray on the "SkyServer," created with Microsoft’s Visual Experience Engine.

WWT Telescope Ambassadors Program

Started early in 2010, the new WorldWide Telescope Ambassadors Program began recruiting astronomically literate volunteers. All recruits are trained to be experts in using WWT as a teaching tool. Volunteers make presentations at public libraries, community centers, museums, and schools, demonstrating WWT’s power to help users visualize and understand our universe. VAO is partnering with the WWT Ambassadors Program in creating formal material for high- and middle-school students.


Zooniverse is the Internet's largest, most popular, and most successful citizen science project. Citizen science projects allow all users to participate in scientific research that is based on well-defined research questions. The VAO has begun a partnership with Zooniverse, in which VAO tools will be incorporated into Zooniverse projects to enhance the experience of users.



The European Virtual Observatory (EURO-VO) is a project aimed at deploying an operational virtual observatory (VO) in Europe. The EURO-VO is actively developing formal education material for the classroom, like the EURO-VO Astronomical Infrastructure for Data Access (AIDA). The VAO is working with our European partners to develop formal education material.

Virtual Astronomy Metadata Project (VAMP)

The Visual Astronomy Multimedia Project (VAMP) is a collaborative project among individuals representing the Spitzer Science Center, ESA/Hubble, California Academy of Sciences, IPAC/IRSA, and the University of Arizona. VAMP is an IVOA-endorsed project aimed at getting NASA press release images properly tagged with standardized metadata so they can be easily acquired by the public, using VO tools.

NASA Night Sky Network

Night Sky Network-logo

The Night Sky Network is a nationwide coalition of amateur astronomy clubs bringing the science, technology, and inspiration of NASA's missions to the general public. The VAO is working with the Night Sky Network to determine how to meet the needs of amateur astronomers and the general public.