Institute in General
Astronomical Institute Description
Astronomical Institute of Slovak Academy of Sciences consists of these 3
Stará Lesná Observatory - Horizontal solar telescope with spectrograph (d = 50 cm),
Lomnicky Peak Observatory - double 20 cm coronagraph (f = 4 m) with post focus instruments:
a) COMP-S (Coronal Multi-channel Polarimeter), b) SCD Solar chromospheric detector.
The research in Solar physics department is focused mainly on the magnetism, dynamics and variability of solar atmosphere. There are several research areas under investigation.
- a) study of the solar photosphere and chromosphere and active events in them, using modern spectro-polarimetric, spectroscopic and photometric observations acquired with top level solar telescopes base at the Canary Islands (GREGOR, VTT, SST, THEMIS), and with space-borne satellites under own joint observing proposals,
- b) study of the solar corona and structures in it (prominences, coronal holes, coronal condensations) and Sun-Earth relations using data acquired with modern infrastructure at our Lomnicky Peak Observatory, with space-borne satellites and from VSO – Virtual Solar Observatory (unique access to data from space- and ground-based observations of the Sun) and using data from solar total eclipses observations,
- c) study of evolution of fast and very powerful events in the solar atmosphere (flares, coronal mass ejections, active prominences, jets) using multiple observations from ground based and space-borne instruments,
Skalnate Pleso Observatory - 61 cm astrometric and photometric reflector
with CCD camera, all sky fireball fish-eye cameras
Modra Observatory - receiver of forward scatter meteor radar.
The main topics of research are as follows: The 61 cm telescope at the
Skalnate Pleso Observatory is used for CCD photometry and astrometry of
asteroids and comets. Theoretical investigation Meteor head echoes from the
Springhill high-power meteor radar are analyzed. The filamentary structure
of selected meteor showers and study of the meteor sporadic background
activity by the forward scatter radio system operating over the triangle
Lecce-Bologna-Modra are identified. Ozone in the upper mesosphere is
detected with ground based radio observations. The cosmic dust particles
provided by NASA to determine their composition and physical properties have
been reanalyzed. The results can be used for the study of their behaviour in
planetary atmospheres and interplanetary space, especially their dynamics
and reflection conditions and a better understanding of the disintegration
processes. The fireball fish-eye cameras are operated within the framework
of the European Fireball Network. Transfer orbits among different
populations of small bodies in the Solar System regarding near-Earth objects
are theoretically investigated.
The investigation of activity of selected cometary nuclei and their
influence on the physical and dynamical evolution of these bodies, possible
candidates on near-Earth objects and the evolution of a cometary nucleus and
its activity at large heliocentric distances is carried out. The
distribution of meteoroid particles in the inner Solar System is described.
The structure and dynamics of meteoroid streams and evolution of their
parent bodies are analyzed. The methods for separation of meteoroid streams
from the sporadic background has been developed. A search for meteoroid
streams of asteroidal origin has been performed. The meteoroid population in
the vicinity of the Earth's orbit, including the mass distribution of
particles in meteoroid streams and their background, the determination of
the internal structure of streams, their aging and decay are investigated.
Skalnate Pleso Observatory - 60 cm photometric reflector,
Stara Lesna Observatory - 50 cm and 60 cm photometric reflectors.
The investigation of interactive binary and multiple systems, symbiotic
stars and novae is focused on physical processes during phases of activity,
studies of their origin, structure and evolution including the physical
conditions in the circumstellar environment. Various manifestations both of
regular and semi-regular variability have been detected photometrically and
models explaining the behaviour of the system have been proposed. The IUE as
well as the HST databases have been fruitfully used for the spectroscopy of
interacting binaries, direct HST images were used to study of expanding
envelopes of novae and symbiotic stars.
Spectroscopy has been the main method for investigation of problems of
Ap/CP (chemically peculiar) star phenomena. Initially s detailed
model-atmosphere analysis was utilized and later on up-to-date methods of
computation of synthetic spectra to study chemical composition of the stars'
surface layers were used. Stratification as well as surface distribution of
concerned chemical elements was derived for several CP stars. Also the role
of binarity for the origin and evolution of the CP-phenomenon has been
studied, and some correlations of orbital and CP-parameters have been
disclosed. The department shared in the designing of satellite programmes
for stellar astrophysics in the frame of INTERCOSMOS. Now the HIPPARCOS and
TYCHO databases are frequently used.