Nikolaev Observatory is one of the oldest observatories in Eastern Europe. It was founded in 1821 as a Naval Observatory. In 1912, it became Nikolaev department of the Main (Pulkovo) Astronomical Observatory (MAO). In 1935, it was included in the network of scientific institutes of the Academy of Sciences of the USSR as Nikolaev department of MAO. In 1992, the observatory became an independent research institution in Ukraine, and it has become the Research Institute: Nikolaev Astronomical Observatory (RI NAO) since 2002. At present the RI NAO is subordinated to the Ministry of Education and Science of Ukraine.
- The Observatory is located in the central part of Nikolaev at an altitude of 52m above sea level.
- The geographic coordinates are longitude 31o58' E, and latitude 46o58' N.
Nikolaev observatory was included in the Tentative list of UNESCO of the World Heritage Sites from Ukraine (Tentative list ¹ 5116, Tentative list ¹ 5267).
- Nikolaev Observatory carries out research in the following fields:
- dynamics of the solar system bodies
- the research of the Near-Earth space
- creation of stellar astrometric catalogues
informational support of astronomical research
- the history of astronomy.