The pursuit of science including radiometric studies ranging from the cosmic microwave background to objects in our own solar system, particle astrophysics, cosmic rays, and gravitation requires not only functioning telescopes and facilities but also sensitive back-end instrumentation. The Cahill Center for Astronomy and Astrophysics hosts an entire floor of laboratory space that is allocated to various groups in experimental physics and astronomy where state-of-the-art instrumentation is being built. Each of these labs is staffed by engineers and technicians who work alongside faculty,research associates, and students.

Graduate students can be involved in any of these groups.

In addition, there is close coupling of many Cahill faculty with engineering and technical development at the Jet Propulsion Laboratory (JPL), especially in the areas of detectors, interferometry, and adaptive optics. Some graduate students spend part of their time at JPL.

Cahill also hosts a teaching lab that is used mainly for undergraduate course work.