Obserwatorium Astronomiczne Fort Skała

Kraków, Poland

Built in 1902

Abandoned in 2000

Visited on 09 2015

This astronomical observatory named ‘Obserwatorium Kraków’. It is part of the ‘Department of Physics, Astronomy and Applied Computer Science’ of the Kraków University. It is named after Nicolaus Copernicus and is based at ‘Fort Skała’. The fort was built in 1878 as a semi-permanent fort. In 1884, it was rebuilt and armored. It became the first armored fort in the Krakow Fortress. It belonged to the third defense sector and was its main building.


The observatory in Fort Skala was put into use in 1964 on the occasion of the 600th anniversary of the university. They built five domes for satellites. The old fort was rebuilt for office space and schooling. Since that moment scientific programs of the ‘Obserwatorium Kraków’ has covered observations of the positions of the Sun, Moon and Jupiter satellites, but also of the Solar System and binary stars. The University also does meteorological observations, research of eclipsing binaries and the rotation and figure of the Moon.


Today ‘Obserwatorium Kraków’ consists of two departments. One for galactic and extragalactic astronomy and one department for radio astronomy and space physics. The main fields of research at the observatory are systematic daily radio observations of the Sun. In the end of 1995 the old 7 meter antenna was replaced by a new 8 meter polar mounted parabolic antenna. The solar flux is recorded every 11 seconds. The observatory also does studies on distribution and structure of radio sources in a close cooperation with other radio astronomy centers. The observatory is still active today.