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Science Museum, London (24/08/2016) | by Saúl Tuñon Loureda
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Science Museum, London (24/08/2016)

© Saúl Tuñón Loureda

 

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El Museo de Ciencias de Londres (Science Museum en inglés) es un museo dedicado a la ciencia en Londres; forma parte del Museo Nacional de la Ciencia y la Industria. El museo es una de las atracciones turísticas de Londres.

 

Este museo contuvo la mayoría de los más famosos objetos de los que ahora forman parte del Science Museum. En 1885, las Science Collections fueron renombradas como Science Museum, y en 1893 fue nombrado un director del museo. Las Art Collections fueron rebautizadas como Art Museum que posteriormente sería el Victoria and Albert Museum. La Patent Office fue integrada en el museo en 1901.

 

Desde entonces, y con cambios en su estructura y su filosofía, alberga las colecciones de ciencia, tecnología, industria y medicina más completas del mundo. Su actual ubicación está en South Kensington. Empezó a construirse en 1913 aunque no se pudo terminar y abrir al público hasta 1928, a causa de la Primera Guerra Mundial.

 

El museo es de grandes dimensiones. Tiene cuarenta salas y está dividido por áreas de conocimiento, abarcando desde los inicios de la informática hasta los viajes espaciales pasando por telecomunicaciones, agricultura, matemáticas, geofísica, medicina, etc. La división del museo es tan específica que incluso hay salas dedicadas a Ciencia y Tecnología en el Islam o Ciencia en India. Y aunque más que un museo de ciencia (más interactivo) es un museo de historia de la ciencia (con muchas vitrinas), hay elementos tan divertidos como un cine IMAX, un simulador de realidad virtual o el llamado Launch Pad, que es una zona interactiva donde los niños podrán desde construir un puente hasta pilotar un avión. Incluso uno puede llegar a hacer un descabellado viaje al futuro en uno de los simuladores con los que cuenta.

 

Sin embargo, la gran atracción es el valor de muchos de los objetos que hay en el mismo y que reflejan una parte del progreso del conocimiento humano. Por ejemplo, se puede ver cómo se conserva en formol el cerebro de Charles Babbage (junto con su formidable máquina precursora de las calculadoras) o ver artefactos tan únicos como el original péndulo de Foucault o el motor de vapor de Boulton y Watt.

 

Por ejemplo, en la parte de astronomía, también se pueden llegar a ver cosas tan sorprendentes como el espejo del telescopio Earl of Rosse que durante el siglo XIX se consideraba el espejo más grande del mundo. Sin embargo, hay que admitir que el objeto que más conmoción causa es el módulo de comando del Apolo X: la primera misión tripulada por hombres que logró entrar en la órbita lunar y que fue el antecesor del que llevó al hombre por primera vez a la luna.

 

Actualmente el Science Museum contiene unos 300.000 objetos, entre los que destacan: la locomotora The Rocket de George Stephenson, que es la más antigua locomotora a vapor que existe; una reconstrucción de la molécula del ADN hecha por Francis Crick y James Watson; y algunos de los motores a vapor más recientes.

 

es.wikipedia.org/wiki/Museo_de_Ciencias_de_Londres

 

The Science Museum is a major museum on Exhibition Road in South Kensington, London. It was founded in 1857 and today is one of the city's major tourist attractions, attracting 3.3 million visitors annually.[2]

 

Like other publicly funded national museums in the United Kingdom, the Science Museum does not charge visitors for admission. Temporary exhibitions, however, may incur an admission fee. It is part of the Science Museum Group, having merged with the Museum of Science and Industry in Manchester in 2012.

 

Origin and history

 

A museum was founded in 1857 under Bennet Woodcroft from the collection of the Royal Society of Arts and surplus items from the Great Exhibition as part of the South Kensington Museum, together with what is now the Victoria and Albert Museum. It included a collection of machinery which became the Museum of Patents in 1858, and the Patent Office Museum in 1863. This collection contained many of the most famous exhibits of what is now the Science Museum. In 1883, the contents of the Patent Office Museum were transferred to the South Kensington Museum. In 1885, the Science Collections were renamed the Science Museum and in 1893 a separate director was appointed.[3] The Art Collections were renamed the Art Museum, which eventually became the Victoria and Albert Museum.

 

When Queen Victoria laid the foundation stone for the new building for the Art Museum, she stipulated that the museum be renamed after herself and her late husband. This was initially applied to the whole museum, but when that new building finally opened ten years later, the title was confined to the Art Collections and the Science Collections had to be divorced from it.[4] On 26 June 1909 the Science Museum, as an independent entity, came into existence.[4] The Science Museum's present quarters, designed by Sir Richard Allison, were opened to the public in stages over the period 1919–28.[5] This building was known as the East Block, construction of which began in 1913 and temporarily halted by World War I. As the name suggests it was intended to be the first building of a much larger project, which was never realized.[6] However, the Museum buildings were expanded over the following years; a pioneering Children's Gallery with interactive exhibits opened in 1931,[4] the Centre Block was completed in 1961-3, the infill of the East Block and the construction of the Lower & Upper Wellcome Galleries in 1980, and the construction of the Wellcome Wing in 2000 result in the Museum now extending to Queensgate.

 

The Science Museum now holds a collection of over 300,000 items, including such famous items as Stephenson's Rocket, Puffing Billy (the oldest surviving steam locomotive), the first jet engine, a reconstruction of Francis Crick and James Watson's model of DNA, some of the earliest remaining steam engines (Including an example of a Newcomen steam engine, the worlds first steam engine), a working example of Charles Babbage's Difference engine, the first prototype of the 10,000-year Clock of the Long Now, and documentation of the first typewriter. It also contains hundreds of interactive exhibits. A recent addition is the IMAX 3D Cinema showing science and nature documentaries, most of them in 3-D, and the Wellcome Wing which focuses on digital technology.[9] Entrance has been free since 1 December 2001.

 

The museum houses some of the many objects collected by Henry Wellcome around a medical theme. The fourth floor exhibit is called "Glimpses of Medical History", with reconstructions and dioramas of the history of practised medicine. The fifth floor gallery is called "Science and the Art of Medicine", with exhibits of medical instruments and practices from ancient days and from many countries. The collection is strong in clinical medicine, biosciences and public health. The museum is a member of the London Museums of Health & Medicine.

 

The Science Museum has a dedicated library, and until the 1960s was Britain's National Library for Science, Medicine and Technology. It holds runs of periodicals, early books and manuscripts, and is used by scholars worldwide. It was, for a number of years, run in conjunction with the Library of Imperial College, but in 2007 the Library was divided over two sites. Histories of science and biographies of scientists were kept at the Imperial College Library in London until February 2014 when the arrangement was terminated, the shelves were cleared and the books and journals shipped out, joining the rest of the collection, which includes original scientific works and archives, in Wroughton, Wiltshire.[10] The Imperial College library catalogue search system now informs searchers that volumes formerly held there are "Available at Science Museum Library Swindon Currently unavailable". A new Research Centre with library facilities is promised for late 2015 but is unlikely to have book stacks nearby.

 

The Science Museum's medical collections have a global scope and coverage. Strengths include Clinical Medicine, Biosciences and Public Health. The new Wellcome Wing, with its focus on Bioscience, makes the Museum a leading world centre for the presentation of contemporary science to the public.

 

Some 170,000 items which are not on current display are stored at Blythe House in West Kensington. Blythe House also houses facilities including a conservation laboratory, a photographic studio, and a quarantine area where newly arrived items are examined.

 

en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Science_Museum,_London

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Taken on August 24, 2016