Austrian Astronomical Association

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The Austrian Astronomical Association (abbreviated as Astroverein or ÖAV ) is the largest association of astronomers in Austria with almost 800 members . It was founded in Vienna in 1924 by the university professor Oswald Thomas - almost at the same time as the Bund der Sternfreunde in Germany - and reaches around 2000 amateur astronomers and those interested in celestial science with the monthly Sternenbote published by the Astronomical Office . The Astronomical Yearbook Österreichischer Himmelskalender , published by the association, offers forecasts of the sun, moon, planets and small bodies of the solar system tailored to Austria, as well as data from bright stars .

The purpose of the association is the promotion of astronomy in public as well as the professional training , support and information of the members. For everyone interested in the starry sky , he offers low-threshold offers, e.g. As by freiäugige star guides in an in darker -scale environment Sterngarten near Vienna. The current chairman is Prof. Gottfried Gerstbach from the Vienna University of Technology.

In addition to the monthly presentation evenings in Vienna, the Astroverein organizes observation evenings and freely accessible star tours . To this end, he operates the star garden (also known as the open-air planetarium ) on the outskirts of the city, which was built around 1995 and a 6 km long planetary path that begins nearby, as well as an automatic meteor station in the Waldviertel for the photographic observation of fireballs .

Anyone interested, regardless of membership, can subscribe to the monthly newsletter free of charge. Members have the option of participating in amateur research programs and borrowing telescopes. In 1990 the working group sundials was founded under the name Gnomonicae Societas Austriaca (GSA), which holds a conference once a year and issues a circular twice a year.


The Astronomical Office , which was also founded by Thomas and whose main goal at the beginning of the 20th century was meteor research , cooperates closely with the association . Today it also supports observation programs for comets , minor planets, meteors and star occultations and publishes yearbooks, eclipse catalogs and other specialist literature. Until his death in 2019 , the office was run by Hermann Mucke , the former director of the Vienna planetarium . The above open-air planetarium on Georgenberg was also created under his initiative .

There is also cooperation with regional associations, especially in Lower and Upper Austria. The annual meetings of the Austrian Conference of Amateur Astronomers (ÖTA) , which were held until around 2005, were "revived" by the ÖAV in 2019.

Web links

Individual evidence

  1. ÖTA19 (PDF) Retrieved November 13, 2019.