The non-profit initiative STScI e. V. runs an observatory for the next generation with the largest telescope in Northrhine-Westfalia. We want to awaken in young people the passion for technology and science that drives us.
- Knowledge creates enthusiasm! Astronomy is a wonderful means of awakening young people’s interest in technology and science. This makes sense and is particularly important in view of the low scientific interest of young people. The decisive characteristic for the region is the local “access to the sky”. This applies in particular to youth work at schools and universities, in which the STScI has a vital interest.
- A modern SchoolLab! The association supports young scientists in the Oberbergische Kreis close to Cologne. All devices are used for training and research. The observatory is to be handed over in the long term to the “Astronomy Oberberg School Network”, which has been established in 2010, in order to achieve a sustainable effect for the region.
- Education promotes people! Talent and interest are not socially determined. They must be awakened in order to open up further opportunities. That’s why we also focus on young people who are less likely to be educated.
In general, we want to promote basic virtues such as respect, integrity, accuracy, perseverance, honesty and self-criticism. Pupils can take on responsibility with us and are strengthened in terms of character. We need your support to make this work with one of the largest telescopes in Germany a success.
You find our goals good and want to cooperate? Then get in touch and arrange a visit with us. Contact: [email protected]
Since 1999 an astronomical observatory – the Schnörringen Telescope Science Institute (STScI) has existed in Waldbröl-Schnörringen. This observation station was operated by the astrophysicist Dr. Thomas Eversberg and the atmospheric physicist Dr. Klaus Vollmann. Both have been passionate astronomers since their youth and have been working together since 1986.
In summer 2008, they acquired one of the largest astronomical telescopes in Germany from private funds. This instrument was the main telescope of the Ludwig-Maximilian-Universität München on the Wendelstein mountain. In addition, they bought a telescope dome with a diameter of 6 metres from the Geodetic Station in Wetzell and provided a plot of land on which an observatory for the training of junior staff is to be built.
With the idea to inspire young talents for astronomy and implicitly for MINT subjects (Mathematics, Informatics, Natural Sciences, Technology) the two founded the non-profit initiative association Schnörringen Telescope Science Institute (STScI) e. V. and began to raise funds for a training observatory. They were accompanied and supported by the Waldbröler Gewerbe- und Industrievereins (GIV) and its associated companies as well as by the Office for Economic Promotion of the Oberbergischer District. The STScI first constructed a building for the telescope. With the help of a grant from the Rhineland Rural Association the STScI started the construction of a service building and a student laboratory. With a second grant from the Hans Hermann Voss Foundation in 2018, we installed a “School Lab Astronomy” consisting of three identical observation stations. The observatory has received further material and financial support from various companies in the region. The project is therefore regarded as an integral part of the Oberberg educational landscape.
Our activity reports (in German) summarize our annual work and provide an insight into our progress.