Caltech, is a world-renowned science and engineering Institute that marshals some of the world's brightest minds and most innovative tools to address fundamental scientific questions and pressing societal challenges. Caltech is small but prizes excellence and ambition. The contributions of Caltech's faculty and alumni have earned national and international recognition, including 34 Nobel Prizes. The Institute manages the Jet Propulsion Laboratory (JPL) for NASA; owns and operates large-scale research facilities including a global network of astronomical observatories, including the Palomar and W. M. Keck Observatories; and cofounded and comanages LIGO, which, in 2016, observed gravitational waves for the first time. The Astronomy Department at Caltech is part of the Division of Physics, Math, and Astronomy. The members of the department engage in a wide variety of astronomical research, with topics ranging from the nearby stars to the most distant galaxies in the Universe.