As of 2014, astrophysicist salaries in the United States range between $59,000 and $89,000, with the average salary at $73,623. Astrophysicists and astronomers study the skies and extraterrestrial phenomena through telescopes. They gather, analyze and interpret research data and present their findings and theories in conferences and scientific journals.
Colleges, universities, observatories and planetariums employ most astrophysicists. Others work for the federal government in the National Aeronautics and Space Administration (NASA) or the U.S. Department of Defense. Companies in the physical engineering and life sciences fields also employ astrophysicists, and others work in aerospace businesses, telecommunications, and high-tech firms.
High-level mathematical skills and research skills are important in this field, where most have advanced degrees in physics or astronomy.