Molėtai Astronomical Observatory

The Molėtai Astronomical Observatory was built in Molėtai district in 1969 as the previous Lithuanian observatory located in Vilnius Vingis park lost conditions for operating because of city expansion.  It is well known that watching astronomical objects requires darkness and clear sky so the new and pretty better place for the astronomical center was chosen. The Molėtai Astronomical Observatory was erected 70km north from Vilnius on the Kaldiniai hill.

The observatory belonging to to the Institute of Theoretical Physics and Astronomy is not only the main observing place for visitors, schoolchildren and students, but for professional astronomers too as there is a wide range of observing technologies held in the Observatory. There is a 35/51 cm Maskutov telescope available, 63 cm reflector and the largest in North Europe telescope of 165 cm operates there too.

What is more, a three-channel photoelectric photometer and a Coravel-type radial spectrometer are used for astronomic researches. Lithuanian astronomers participate in many international astronomic projects like photometry of stars in galaxy and star clusters, studying galaxy population, developing methods of temperatures, luminosities, peculiarity star types determination. Lithuanian astronomers cooperate with the partners from Denmark and USA.

Molėtai Astronomical Observatory welcomes not only scientists of astronomy but people of other professions too. Everybody are pleased to get acquainted with the great number of exhibits including real telescopes, many original impressive galaxy photos, the latest astronomy news. Sometimes visitors can get a chance to glance to the sky through the telescope and to see the cosmos by themselves! On the southern wall of the Molėtai Astronomical Observatory a real sun clock is located, not far from the telescopes towers a collection of mythological stones is exposed. Also an eye-catching stained-glasses decorate windows of Observatory. Finally, next to Kaldiniai hill is another hill where the Museum of Ethnocosmology is located where visitors are able to get acquainted with the historical viewpoint about celestial bodies.

The Molėtai Astronomical Observatory is the only one place in Lithuania including such a great astronomical technologies. Visiting the Observatory always delights its guests as they have a perfect chance to know better, what is above our planet. Of course, Molėtai Astronomical Observatory does not propagate myths about aliens, but people visited it understand how little they are, and how little is the importance of their biggest problems.

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