Central State Scientific and Technical Archives of Ukraine

Nauka naukozn. 2022, 3(117): 103–128

Section: Science and technology history
Language: Ukrainian
Abstract: The article is devoted to the study of the life and work of the amateur astronomer Leonid Andrenko, a well-known figure in the amateur movement to spread astronomical knowledge in 1920s–1930s. The results of the historiographical analysis revealed the absence of comprehensive studies devoted to the reconstruction of the full scientific biography of this amateur astronomer; in fact, the name of the scientist was lost for the history of science. The article’s aim is to summarize the results of a comprehensive historical and biographical study of the life and work of Leonid Andrenko.

On the basis of archival records first introduced into scientific circulation and a review of his publishing activity, the milestones of his biography and phases of the research work were reconstructed; the full list of Leonid Andrenko’s works that are a bibliographic rarity today was analyzed. The amateur astronomer collaborated mainly with leading European and American astronomical editions; most of his publications were of a popular science nature.

A review of Leonid Andrenko’s research effort showed that his works pertained to observational and planetary astronomy, meteorological research, popularization of astronomical science. The amateur astronomer was concerned with a wide range of problems of world science and natural science, from the theoretical justification of the origin of life in the Universe to solutions of cosmogonical problems or formation of theoretical foundations for the implementation of space travel.

Examples of communication between this amateur astronomer and famous scientists and public figures are given: V.I. Vernadsky, M.O. Morozov, K.E. Tsiolkovsky, M.P. Barabashov, E.V. Bachinsky, L.O. Tolstaya and others. The areas of Leonid Andrenko’s creative effort are characterized, to demonstrate that he was a versatile and talented person working as a sculptor, an artist, a philosopher, a poet.

Keywords: Leonid Andrenko, amateur astronomer, astronomical observatory, astronomical society, ultra-telescope.


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