Google has donated $1 million to a 125-year-old research observatory located east of San Jose.
The Mercury News reported Monday that the gift will pay day-to-day operating expenses of the historic Lick Observatory atop Mount Hamilton.
Some of the money will be used to hire another operator for the Shane three-meter telescope, which periodically closes due to staff shortages.
Google's donation represents about one-quarter of the observatory's annual budget, augmenting the $1.5 million the University of California gives each year.
Lick was established in 1888 and is used by astronomers and students to conduct research and test next-generation technologies.
Its astronomers have discovered asteroids, moons of Jupiter and planets outside our solar system.