The Vatican Observatory is an astronomical research and educational institution supported by the Holy See. Originally based in the Roman College of Rome, it now has headquarters and laboratory at the summer residence of the Pope in Castel Gandolfo
, and an observatory at the Mount Graham International Observatory in the United States
The Director of the Observatory is Fr. José Gabriel Funes an Argentinian Jesuit. Many distinguished scholars have worked at the Observatory. In 2008, the Templeton Prize was awarded to cosmologist Fr. Michał Heller, a Vatican Observatory Adjunct Scholar. In 2010, the George Van Biesbroeck Prize was awarded to former observatory director, the American Jesuit, Fr. George Coyne.