NWO Institutes are Dutch national expertise centres, each with their own expertise. ASTRON is part of the institutes’ organisation of NWO (NWOI - Stichting Nederlandse Wetenschappelijk Onderzoek Instituten), an independent foundation that falls under the Dutch Research Council (NWO). 

ASTRON is the Netherlands Institute for Radio Astronomy. Its mission is to make discoveries in radio astronomy happen, via the development of novel and innovative technologies, the operation of world class radio astronomy facilities, and the pursuit of fundamental astronomical research. ASTRON designed, built and now operates the International LOFAR Telescope and is also responsible for the operations of the 14 dish Westerbork Synthesis Radio Telescope (WSRT-APERTIF). ASTRON plays a major role in the various consortia contributing to the current Square Kilometre Array (SKA) Design Phase. It leads both the SKA Low Frequency Aperture Array and the SKA Mid Frequency Aperture Array work packages. In addition, ASTRON plays a prominent role in the Science Data Processor (SDP) work package and also several others. ASTRON coordinates the Horizon2020 INFRADEV design study LOFAR4SW which designs an upgrade to the LOFAR radio telescope to enable space weather monitoring observations in parallel with radio astronomy operations.  It has also undertaken an ESA-funded project to develop demonstration space weather data products with LOFAR for possible inclusion in the ESA SSA space weather portal.