The Johann Palisa Observatory and Planetarium, part of the VŠB-Technical University of Ostrava, is located in the Poruba forest between two outlying districts of Ostrava – Poruba and Krásné Pole. The planetarium was opened in 1980 and its mission is to popularize astronomy and the natural sciences in general. It is the only institution of its type in the Czech Republic that forms part of a university.
The main hall of the planetarium contains apparatus projecting an accurate image of the night sky onto a cupola measuring 12.5 in diameter. The planetarium holds its own audiovisual presentations, using its main projection apparatus supplemented by several other large-scale projectors (static images, videos, computer animations). The observatory has two cupolas with telescopes of 305 mm and 150 mm in diameter, as well as a number of smaller mobile telescopes.