The VEGA Observatory Haus der Natur is a platform for science, education, culture and society. In contrast to pure research observatories, the focus is not only on scientific research but also on communication and social mission. With this mission in mind, the Haus der Natur aims to inspire as many people as possible to become interested in astronomy and space research and to promote the discussion of these topics in society.
The observatory is one of the most powerful public observatories in Central Europe. It has two telescopes, which will be used for research as well as for public guided tours. The larger telescope is a so-called Ritchey-Chrétien-Cassegrain telescope and has a mirror diameter of 1,000 millimetres. It stands in an all-sky dome that can be fully opened. The focal length is 7,000 millimetres; depending on the eyepiece used, the magnification can be up to a thousand times higher. The use of this telescope makes it possible to observe and photograph distant celestial bodies.
The smaller telescope, also known as an RC telescope, has a mirror diameter of 400 millimetres and can magnify up to 300 times. It is used for the exploration and photography of closer celestial bodies. With less magnification, this telescope can also display or photograph these celestial objects in their entirety. The telescope stands in a slit dome, which offers perfect wind protection with longer exposure times.
About 70% of the financing was provided by private sponsors and donors. 30% came from public funds.