Advanced Search
Nenad Bach - Editor in Chief

Sponsored Ads
 »  Home  »  Science  »  Korado Korlevic and Visnjan Astronomical Observatory in Croatia
 »  Home  »  People  »  Korado Korlevic and Visnjan Astronomical Observatory in Croatia
 »  Home  »  Education  »  Korado Korlevic and Visnjan Astronomical Observatory in Croatia
Korado Korlevic and Visnjan Astronomical Observatory in Croatia
By Prof.Dr. Darko Zubrinic | Published  07/1/2008 | Science , People , Education | Unrated
Magic touch of the night sky and stars

Korado Korlević, founder of the Višnjan Observatory, Istrian peninsula, Croatia

Korado Korlević

Born in the city of Porec 1958, he spent the college years in the city of Pula where he became an active member of the local amateur astronomical society. That was followed by years of observing, making telescopes and teaching. As student started he to teach gifted pupils the introduction to science through astronomical courses at the Amateur Astronomical Society of Visnjan. In the year 1981. got a B.Sc. from the pedagogical faculty of Rijeka. From that period, the problem of the motivation of gifted children become a "file rogue" of the following years of work as teacher of polytechnics and computer science. At the end of the '80 with a group of "same thinkers" he started the "Yugoslav School of Astronomy", which after the war became known as "The Visnjan School of Astronomy". As an amateur astronomer he started to observe meteors seriously and participated in the IMO as the organization formed. The work on meteors culminated with the participation in the "1st International Tunguska Expedition", with two main projects.

The search of the possible strewn field gave tens of kilograms of samples, from which drops of resin from the Tunguska explosion were extracted. The analysis of that resin and a long the tree rings specimen at the Bologna University resulted in a series of Italian expeditions during the following years. At that time the war in Croatia blocked nearly all activities, but the work whit gifted pupils at Visnjan was intensified.

Motivated by the problem of bright fireballs, the results of the analysis of the Tunguska samples and a growing perception that the next "Tunguska" is better if analyzed in space instead on the ground, Korado started the work to replace the Visnjan Observatory's telescope lost during the Bosnian war. After few years and help of a group of friends the new, specialized telescope produced the first astrometric line in the 1995.  Very soon astrometry measurements were followed by the first discoveries of asteroids and comets from Croatia.

Korado Korlevic was the editor of the "Nebeske krijesnice" newsletter and referee for astronomical articles regarding small bodies and impact topics. The main challenge is still the search of better, more effective way to motivate the gifted pupils, and for that purpose few very different educational activities are organized at the Visnjan observatory. His free time is dedicated to family and the construction of astronomical instruments, meteor observations, micrometeorite analysis, optimization of asteroid and comet astrometry and their observations, workshops on methods of creative thinking, entomology excursions, painting, etc...

Honorary Member: Associazzione Friulana di Astronomia e Meteorologia-Udine

Astrofili Forlivesi "J.Hevelius" - Forli'

AD "Infinitum" - Zagreb


- Poreč city prize "San Mauro" - "for the educational achievements"
- Asteroid 10201 was named "Korado" - "for his educational, astronomical and social contribution"
- Edgar Wilson Award 1999 - "for comet discovery"
- Edgar Wilson Award 2000 - "for comet discovery"
- Ivan Filipović Award 2002 - Croatian Ministry of Education

Contact data:
Višnjan Observatory, Istarska 5, 52463 Višnjan, Croatia
tel/fax: ++385 52 449 212


Warning! Time spent observing the heavens is not deducted from your lifespan.

A new observatory in Tićan near Višnjan. Photo by Gregor Kervina.

Visnjan Observatory is situated in the western part of the Istrian peninsula . It is part of the picturesque city of Višnjan. During the past ten years, Visnjan became one of the world's most prolific discovery sites for the small bodies in the Solar System. More than 1400 minor planets have been discovered with our 40 cm telescope.

At this time, we are putting together a new observatory with 1 m telescope . It is called Tican , and it is just 3 km away from Visnjan. We have some exciting times ahead!

Astronomy is not the only thing that is going on in Visnjan. We are involved in many educational projects that include physics, biology, chemistry, ecology , and many other fields. Our programs offer new and creative methods of teaching science to young people. Recently, we have also started a workshop on management in science. We strongly believe that in today's rapidly evolving educational and social environment, students need more than what is offered in government schools.

Visnjan Observatory and its projects are carried out by a group of volunteers and participating students. Their success is a proof of how much can be done just with enthusiasm.


Watching the stars. Photo by Gregor Kervina.

Visnjan Observatory runs two types of projects. The first is designed for teachers, and the other one is intended for students. During teaching seminars, we are trying to develop creative ways of learning and improving classroom methodology, as well as broaden teachers' knowledge in advanced science. The student workshops include astronomy, physics, biology, and chemistry, and we are working on adding more scientific fields. We plan one day to have a real interdisciplinary youth research center at Visnjan. For now, one of the main student events is Visnjan's Summer School of Astronomy.

Here youngsters, ranging from the elementary school to college, work on challenging projects, side by side with recognized scientists. The relaxed atmosphere encourages communication between the students and the experts, and it results in high-quality results. Some of these results get presented in science competitions and even get published.

The study of small bodies of the Solar System is a major research topic at Visnjan. In addition, students get involved in telescope construction, automatization technology, data analysis, and storage software. All of this develops analytical thinking and sparks one's imagination. We hope this gives a good starting point for science enthusiasts or even future scientists.

Prije nešto više od stotinjak godina, naš je bard prirodoslovlja, Oton Kučera, zapisao jednu misao, koja je i danas aktualna kao i tada, i to ne samo u astronomiji!

... posveti koju uru pojavama kojima ćeš biti svjedok. Naći ćeš doduše dosta ljudi, koji će te gledati u čudu, što li nalaziš u tome zabavna, da se udubljuješ u to nebo, jer žalibože danas tisuće i tisuće i obrazovanih ljudi svaki dan gledaju te krasne pojave, a da ih ne vide. Neka ti oni ne budu mjerilom: rdjav odgoj, pretjerana borba za svagdašnji život, možda i niske strasti ugušile su u njima polet srca, koji ne može da shvaća takovih užitaka. Ne dao nam Bog, da ikad, pa ni u dubokoj starosti padnemo na te niske grane!

Oton Kučera
Naše nebo - crtice iz astronomije
Matica Hrvatska, Zagreb 1895.

Summer School of Science in Višnjan

Young astronomers in Tićan. Photo by Zanstveno edukacijski centar Višnjan.

Due to intiative of Mr. Korado Korlević, an asteroid was named after the name of don Niko Miličević (+1963), a legendary glagolitic priest and astronomer in the Blaca glagolitic convent on the island of Brač. Another asteroid was given the name of the island of Brač. There are many other asteroids bearing Croatian names due to suggestions of Mr. Korlević.

The Višnjan Observatory directed by Korado Korlević is a place where some of internationally established Croatian experts in various fields began to be interested in science since their tender age.

We mention, for example, Silvija Gradečak, distinguished international physicist working in the field of nanotechnology, employed at MIT.

Formated for CROWN by prof.dr. Darko Žubrinić
Distributed by . This message is intended for Croatian Associations/Institutions and their Friends in Croatia and in the World. The opinions/articles expressed on this list do not reflect personal opinions of the moderator. If the reader of this message is not the intended recipient, please delete or destroy all copies of this communication and please, let us know!

How would you rate the quality of this article?

Enter the security code shown below:
imgRegenerate Image

Add comment
Article Options
Croatian Constellation

Popular Articles
  1. Dr. Andrija Puharich: parapsychologist, medical researcher, and inventor
  2. (E) Croatian Book Club-Mike Celizic
  3. Europe 2007: Zagreb the Continent's new star
  4. (E) 100 Years Old Hotel Therapia reopens in Crikvenica
  5. Nenad Bach & Miro Gavran hosted by Branimir Bilic on Croatian TV 2010
No popular articles found.