The goal of the European Association for Solar Telescopes (EAST) is to ensure access of European solar astronomers to world-class high-resolution ground-based observing facilities. In order to achieve this goal, EAST intends to develop, construct and operate a next-generation large aperture European Solar Telescope (EST) in the Canaries. Furthermore, EAST endeavours to co-ordinate the operation and scientific use of existing high-resolution optical solar telescopes on the ground in Europe, and to co-ordinate and facilitate efforts of its members to participate in other solar facilities such as the Advanced Technology Solar Telescope in the US. EAST shall facilitate access to these solar facilities also for European solar physicists who are not EAST members and encourage their participation in EAST.
- Maintain and co-ordinate the scientific and organisational framework for the development of EST,
- Monitor the progress of the EST design study and communicate its results to the wider scientific community,
- Search for funding sources required for the successive stages of EST development;
- Stimulate the coordination of the scientific exploitation of optical solar facilities in Europe. EAST shall encourage and support its members in the coordination of the operation of these facilities;
- Promote international collaborations in areas of instrument and facility development of solar research in Europe;
- Initiate, manage and support development studies, including industrial studies;
- Encourage all efforts for an efficient scientific and technical mutual collaboration with solar facilities outside Europe, such as the Advanced Technology Solar Telescope. EAST may act as a contractual partner to outside organizations, as part of its coordination activities;
- Organize and conduct regular meetings of its members;
- Organize and support international conferences and workshops on topics that are relevant for its goal;
- Establish and support working groups which address specific topics relevant for its goal. These groups may include outside participation.