List of Russian astronomers and astrophysicists

List of Russian astronomers and astrophysicists
Staff of the Pulkovo Observatory (around 1883–1886). Otto Wilhelm von Struve is in the center.

This list of Russian astronomers and astrophysicists includes the famous astronomers, astrophysicists and cosmologists from the Russian Empire, the Soviet Union and the Russian Federation.

Alphabetical list

  See also 


  • Tateos Agekian, one of the pioneers of Russian and world Stellar dynamics, discoverer of two evolutionary sequences of stellar systems: nearly spherical and strongly flattened
  • Vladimir Albitsky, discovered a significant number of asteroids
  • Viktor Ambartsumian, one of the founders of theoretical astrophysics, discoverer of stellar associations, founder of Byurakan Observatory in Armenia


  • Nikolai P. Barabashov, co-author of the ground breaking publication of the first pictures of the far side of the Moon in 1961, called Atlas of the Other Side of the Moon. A crater and a planet were named after him
  • Vladimir Belinski, an author of the BKL singularity model of the Universe evolution
  • Igor Belkovich, made notable contributions to astronomy. The crater Bel'kovich on the Moon is named after him
  • Aristarkh Belopolsky, invented a spectrograph based on the Doppler effect, among the first photographers of stellar spectra
  • Sergey Belyavsky, discovered the bright naked-eye comet C/1911 S3 (Beljawsky). He discovered and co-discovered a number of asteroids
  • Gennady S. Bisnovatyi-Kogan, first determined the maximum mass of a hot neutron star
  • Sergey Blazhko, discovered a secondary variation of the amplitude and period of some RR Lyrae stars and related pulsating variables, now know as the Blazhko effect
  • Semion Braude, co-developed large-scale radio interferometers for precise examination of extraterrestrial radio sources
  • Fyodor Bredikhin, developed the theory of comet tails, meteors and meteor showers, a director of the Pulkovo Observatory
  • Jacob Bruce, statesman, naturalist and astronomer, founder of the first observatory in Russia (in the Sukharev Tower)



  • Denis Denisenko, notable astronomer, author of more than 25 scientific articles and a presenter at five international conferences
  • A. G. Doroshkevich, along with Igor Novikov, discovered cosmic microwave background radiation as a detectable phenomenon
  • Alexander Dubyago, expert in theoretical astrophysics. The lunar crater Dubyago is named after him and his father, Dmitry Ivanovich Dubyago
  • Dmitry Dubyago, expert in theoretical astrophysics, astrometry, and gravimetry. A crater on the Moon is named after him and his son


  • Vasily Engelhardt, researched comets, asteroids, nebulae, and star clusters, in an observatory he built himself


  • Vasily Fesenkov, founded the Alma-Ata (now Almaty) astrophysical observatory, and was the first to make a study of Zodiacal light using photometry, and suggested a theory of its dynamics
  • Kirill Florensky, head of Comparative Planetology at the Vernadsky Institute of the U. S. S. R. Academy of Sciences. The crater Florensky on the Moon is named after him
  • Alexander Friedmann, mathematician and cosmologist, discovered the expanding-universe solution to the general relativity field equations. Authored the FLRW metric of Universe
  • Alexei Fridman, predicted existence of smaller satellites around Uranus


  • George Gamow, theoretical physicist and cosmologist, discovered alpha decay via quantum tunneling and Gamow factor in stellar nucleosynthesis, introduced the big bang nucleosynthesis theory, predicted cosmic microwave background
  • Vitaly Ginzburg, co-developed the theory of superconductivity, the theory of electromagnetic wave propagation in plasmas, and a theory of the origin of cosmic radiation
  • Sergey Glazenap, notable astronomer. A crater on the Moon and the minor planet 857 Glasenappia have been named after him
  • Alexander A. Gurshtein, developed a concept of history of constellations and the zodiac
  • Matvey Gusev, the first to prove the non-sphericity of the Moon, pioneer of photography in astronomy








  • Pavel Petrovich Parenago, known for contributions to the field of galactic astronomy.
  • Yevgeny Perepyolkin, observed the proper motion of stars with respect to extragalactic nebula.
  • Solomon Pikelner, made a significant contribution to the theory of the interstellar medium, solar plasma physics, stellar atmospheres, and magnetohydrodynamics
  • Elena V. Pitjeva, expert in the field of solar system dynamics and celestial mechanics



  • Gavriil Tikhov, invented the feathering spectrograph. Was one of the first to use color filters to increase the contrast of surface details on planets




  • Aleksandr Zaitsev, coined the term Messaging to Extra-Terrestrial Intelligence, conducted the first intercontinental radar astronomy experiment, transmitted the Cosmic Calls and Teen Age Message
  • Yakov Zel'dovich, physicist, astrophysicist and cosmologist, the first to suggest that accretion discs around massive black holes are responsible for the quasar radiation, co-predicted the Sunyaev–Zel'dovich effect of CMB distortion
  • Abram Leonidovich Zelmanov, notable astronomer
  • Sergei Alexandrovich Zhevakin, identified ionized helium as the valve for the heat engine that drives the pulsation of Cepheid variable stars
  • Lyudmila Zhuravlyova, discovered a number of asteroids, ranked 43rd by Harvard University's list of those who discovered minor planets. She is credited with having discovered 200 such bodies
  • Felix Ziegel, author of more than 40 popular books on astronomy and space exploration, generally regarded as a founder of Russian ufology

See also

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