The town of Partizánske is an entrance gate to the Upper Nitra Region. It is situated at the confluence of the rivers Nitra and Nitrica between the spur of the Tríbeč and the Strážovské Hills in the northeastern part of Western Slovakia. The town originally named Baťovany was founded in 1938 - 1939 by the businessman J. Baťa from Zlín, who in the cadastre of the village of Šimnovany built a shoe-making factory.
In 1949 the town was given its present name Partizánske. At the end of August 1988 an astronomical observatory was opened to the public in the northwestern part of the town in the suburban quarter called Malé Bielice.
The building of the observatory is situated 1364 kilometres east of the Greenwich Meridian and 4590 kilometers south of the North Pole in the elevation of 200 meters above sea level. This specialized facility consists of a lecture hall with the capacity of 68 visitors, 5.5 meter-wide dome and office rooms. The lecture hall is equipped with up-to date audio - visual technique which allows seminars, symposiums and educational programmes to be held here for both expert astronomers as well as for the public.
The main astronomical instrument of the observatory is a 150 mm f/15 Coudé refracting telescope. Equipped with a revolver eyepiece head allowing to use variable magnification possible to perform visual observations at powers ranging from 56 to 375 times. In connection with a state-of-the-art CCD camera the telescope becomes a powerful tool by means of which all visitors can observe unique astronomical phenomena simultaneously in the comfort of the observatory’s lecture hall.
The primary focus of the observatory’s educational activities consists in the popularization of astronomy, astronautics and related sciences. By 1998 the observatory was visited by more than 100 thousand visitors. In connection with the primary school curricula the observatory offers educational programmes extending the subject matter in natural sciences, geography and physics.
One of the observatory’s principal tasks are its observational and professional activities. The type of professional work is determined by the observatory’s instrumental and personal potential as well as by the current request for given type of observations within the network of Slovak astronomical observatories. Basically, it is the visual observation of the Sun and drawing the solar photosphere.
In the field of interplanetary matter a fish-eye camera is used for the observation of bolides.In year 2008 was given to use new Observation post to Astronomers and public. It is named SoHO which is short for Slnečno-Hviezdne Observatórium or Solar and Stellar Observatory in english. Innovative construction of the opening roof protects the solar- and stellar- telescopes and other equipment from the volatile weather. Expeditions are organized for the observations of meteor showers. As far as the observatory’s equipment allows, observations of star occultations by the Moon are performed by means of a BW TV CCD camera as well as the observations of variable stars and astrophotography.
Principal observational programmes for the public take place on Wednesdays, Fridays and on the first Saturday of each month.