Main Astronomical Observatory of NAS of Ukraine was founded July 17, 1944 on the initiative of famous scientist, astronomer and geophysicist O.Ya. Orlov (1880 – 1954). It is located 12 km from the center of Kyiv Holosiiv forest (hence its unofficial name – Holosiivska).
Observatory was headed by Acad. of USSR Academy of Sciences O.Ya.Orlov (1944 – 1948 and 1951 – 1952); Corresponding Member of USSR Academy of Sciences V.P. Tsesevych (1948 – 1951), Corresponding Member of USSR Academy of Sciences A.A. Yakovkin (1952 – 1959), Academician of UkSSR Academy of Sciences E.P. Fedorov (1959 – 1973), Ph.D. I.K. Koval (1973 – 1975). Since 1975 the Observatory of NAS of Ukraine has been headed by Academician of NAS of Ukraine Yaroslav Stepanovich Yatskiv.
Observatory takes leading place in many areas of astronomy, such as the study of Earth’s rotation and construction of coordinate systems in space, physics photosphere of the Sun and solar system formation and evolution of stars and galaxies, and others.
In the MAO the Post-graduate and Specialized Scientific Council for doctoral and master’s theses in physics and mathematics works in the fields:
- astrometry and celestial mechanics
- astrophysics, radio astronomy
- heliophysics and physics of the solar system
- remote aerospace research
GAO publishes magazines “Physics and Kinematics of Celestial Bodies”, “Space science and technology” and the annual “Astronomical Calendar”
Achievements of Observatory scientists more than once winned State awards and medals of the USSR and Ukraine in the field of science and technology, awards of NAS of Ukraine, the Cabinet of Ministers and the Verkhovna Rada of Ukraine, international awards, among them “Dr. Demyaniv Foundation. For peace and freedom of Ukraine” and EU Descartes Prize 2003, the medal named. Yuri Gagarin and the Order “For Merit”.
In 2004, MAO was awarded by Certificate of Honor of the Cabinet of Ministers of Ukraine in connection with 60 – anniversary of MAO and the minor planet number 15675 was named “Holosyeyevo” in honor of Holosiivska Observatory.
Observatory has six academic departments: physics of stars and galaxies, astrometry and space geodynamics, space plasma physics, physics of planetary systems, solar physics, physics of minor celestial bodies and laboratories for atmospheric optics, for transient phenomena in stars and for instrumentation as well as Astro/Space Information and Computing Centre (ASICC).