Lakhta Center is a multifunctional complex in St. Petersburg with the Gazprom headquarter and public spaces occupying a third of the area. Construction was completed in October 2018, now start work on the arrangement of business and public areas. The opening will take place in about a year, when the complex will be fully prepared to meet guests.
Art of Surprising
Finding yourselves inside an atom, launching a tornado or building a bridge over a river can be done by anybody irrespective of their age. For science and technology are not only the research of the unknown but also the power of imagination and a skill to work out an unconventional approach to any problem. We will tell you about a few museums worth visiting by children and adults in order to understand better how the world is organized.
London Museum of Science
The history of this museum dates back over 150 years. During the first years after it was founded, industrial production objects and decorative and applied art were on display there. Nowadays the collection accounts for about 300 000 exhibits highlighting the history of science, technology and medicine starting from 1700. The inventions in the sphere of astronomy, physics, chemistry, math, natural science and navigation are displayed here. In the “Science” Section devices and tools are on display which played an important part in the formation of the western modern culture. The exhibits of the “Medicine” Section outline the evolution of knowledge on the organization of a human body. In particular, the diorama “Discovery of Anesthetic Drugs” depicts the first operation with the use of anesthesia conducted in October 1846 in Boston. The Section “Information and Communication Technologies” explains how the storage, processing and transmission of information became inseparable from any type of activity of a modern human being. One of the most interesting exhibits of the section “Mechanical Engineering” is a command module of a “Apollo-10” ship. In this capsule in 1969 Thomas Stafford, John Young, and Eugene Cernan executed a flight around the Moon.
Nemo Scientific Center
The national center for science and technology was opened in Amsterdam in 1997. Nowadays an interactive museum for children of all ages is located in a five-storey building built in the shape of a large green ship. The main rule of the center is touching, turning and even disassembling of everything is allowed. Here young discoverers can get to know the structure of the world, watch the laws of physics, chemistry and biology in action, make their attempts in robot construction. The first floor is designated for the smallest visitors. They will find experiments with soap bubbles and cubes, distorting mirrors and centrifuges. The upper floors of Nemo are research laboratories where research work is underway from the morning till night. Young physics and chemistry researches can get to know the imitation of an earthquake, how a lighting appears, the structure of a DNA molecule.
Heureka Scientific Center
Located in the suburb of Helsinki, in a town of Vantaa, this museum is one of the most popular places of family leisure. For children a visit to Heureka becomes a real holiday and plunging into a fascinating world of science. All the exhibitions are interactive there and the main collection accounts for a few hundreds of exhibits dedicated to the discoveries in the sphere of physics, astronomy, chemistry and math. Visitors can take part in the process of paper production, try to resolve various math problems, carry out chemical experiments. In an open scientific park Gallileo, operating from May till September, there are a lot of water-related park amusement. Bridges can be built there over a small river, energy can be generated here and various experiments can be witnessed. The pride of Heureka is a Vattenfall planetarium with a huge spherical digital ЗD screen demonstrating popular science films.
CosmoCaixa Museum of Science
On a Barcelona street named after Isaak Newton, one of the most interesting places in the capital of Catalonia rich in sights is located. Here in a vast greenhouse of an area 1000 sq.m. under a glass dome a recreated eco-system of Amazon jungles is on display. Large-toothed piranhas, crocodiles and other exotic species of animals and plants are included. The moisture inside the greenhouse is almost 100% (the same as in the real tropic forest). In the geological section a structure demonstrating the Earth in cross-section is displayed. In order to create it almost 100 tons of different materials were used. Visitors can see how our planet is structured, how the Earth crust moves and what processes the core undergoes. The special pride of the museum is a model of an active volcano. A few areas are designated for small children only, from 3 to 6 years old. Here they provide explanations of what power is, how light can be caught by a mirror, why a magnifying glass magnifies an image, etc.
Over 600 exhibits highlighting literally everything in the world are on display in the museum located in San Francisco. For convenience the exposition is divided on a subject basis. The “Consciousness” Section offers a few experiments with thoughts and feelings, in the “Ear” Section visitors can work out a sound mix from speech, music and noise accompanying a human being, in the “Sight” Section offers over 70 interesting exhibits. There is a “tactile house” in the museum, a room where visitors can travel with their eyes tied. It is very interesting just walking around the museum by participating in various experiments however for people target-oriented and with a limited amount of time the organizers arranged a few special programs. Couples can arrange a date in a heating room, dancers can try to keep balance where it is almost impossible to do, those who would like to check their potential can try for example to master two types of information (audio and video) simultaneously which are not interrelated.
Nowadays interactive museums serve mainly an entertainment function. The designers of Lakhta Center Project think about the future and plan to create a scientific platform. The exposition will occupy about 7 000 sq.m., and the council of the rectors of the city’s universities is involved in the development of the concept. The main part of the Interactive Museum will be occupied by an Exploratorium for pupils where children in a gaming format will be taught the basics of physics, chemistry, astronomy and math. The center will also host a planetarium, the second one in Petersburg. For high school pupils and students R&D from Lomonosov to Alferov will be on display. A conference hall and a media center are designed in the Center for Science and Technology. The scientific museum will be located in the North and South Blocks of Lakhta Center to be commissioned in 2018. An area for presenting achievements of the leading Petersburg universities will be allocated in the center. Here pupils can get down to real research supervised by professors and students of Saint Petersburg National Research University of IT, Mechanics and Optics, Mine University and Saint Petersburg State Polytechnic University. The ultimate objective is to integrate the center in an overall education system so that the results of the works completed by pupils can be taken into account when getting into universities apart from the State National Exam scores and victories in school Olympiads.