Science Museum

Science Museum
Exhibition Road
London
Greater London
SW7 2DD
England

Website

www.sciencemuseum.org.uk

E-mail

General enquiries

sciencemuseum@nmsi.ac.uk

General enquiries and feedback

feedback@nmsi.ac.uk

Telephone

Information and bookings

0870 870 4868

All information is drawn from or provided by the venues themselves and every effort is made to ensure it is correct. Please remember to double check opening hours with the venue concerned before making a special visit.
The Science Museum
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Where else can you find life-changing objects from Stephenson’s Rocket to the Apollo 10 command module, take in a science show, catch an immersive 3D movie, enjoy the thrills of a special effects simulator, introduce children to science with fun, hands-on interactives and encounter the past, present and future of technology in seven floors of galleries? At the Science Museum you can find all this and more!

Venue Type:

Museum, Science centre

Opening hours

Daily 10.00-18.00

Closed 24-26 December

Admission charges

Admission to the Museum is free but charges apply to the IMAX 3D Cinema, simulators and some special exhibitions and events.

The Science Museum has over 300,000 objects in its care, with particular strengths in the history of western science, technology and medicine since 1700.

It has been uniquely placed to acquire objects recording the Industrial Revolution, and now holds unrivalled collections in this area. Medical artifacts from all periods and cultures also form an important part of its holdings.

Items from this collection

Collection details

World Cultures, Toys and Hobbies, Social History, Science and Technology, Natural Sciences, Medicine, Maritime, Land Transport, Inland Waterways, Industry, Fine Art, Film and Media, Design, Costume and Textiles, Coins and Medals, Aviation, Archives, Agriculture

Key artists and exhibits

  • Launchpad
  • atmosphere
  • Who Am I
  • Apollo 10
  • Babbage
  • Difference engine
  • Fly Zone
  • IMAX
  • Lates
Exhibition details are listed below, you may need to scroll down to see them all.
photograph of exhibition interior

Joan Fontcuberta: Stranger than Fiction

  • 23 July — 9 November 2014 *on now

This summer our Media Space gallery will host Joan Fontcuberta's first major UK exhibition featuring six conceptually independent narratives which mix fact with fiction and science with art.

“Photography is a tool to negotiate our idea of reality. Thus it is the responsibility of photographers to not contribute with anaesthetic images but rather to provide images that shake consciousness.” Joan Fontcuberta.

Winner of the 2013 Hasselblad Foundation International Award in Photography, Fontcuberta uses the storytelling capabilities of photographic imagery to create a reality that is convincing, mischievous and visually compelling.

“The way he pulls the rug out from under our cognitive feet continues to be amusing and philosophically intriguing.”
– The New York Times, on Joan Fontcuberta’s Constellations.

You can find out more about the exhibition's narratives - Fauna, Herbarium, Orogenesis, Constellations, Sirens and Karelia - in the image gallery below.

Suitable for

  • Any age

Admission

Adults £8.00, Child £5.00.

Website

http://www.sciencemuseum.org.uk/visitmuseum/Plan_your_visit/exhibitions/joan_fontcuberta.aspx

photograph of telescope

Cosmos & Culture

  • 23 July 2009 — 31 December 2015 *on now

Explore how astronomy has changed the way we see our universe - and ourselves - through this object-rich exhibition. From ancient heritage to cutting edge technology, trace the history of people and the stars through different stories drawn from around the world.

Cosmos & Culture uses a new multimedia display environment that allows you to explore objects in depth and find out about key scientific concepts. See how different instruments work, discover the stories of the people who made and used them, and enjoy beautiful models, illustrations and photographs.

Exhibition supported by the Patrons of the Science Museum with additional support from the Science and Technology Facilities Council, STFC.

Suitable for

Admission

Free

3D: Printing the Future

  • 9 October 2013 — 4 January 2015 *on now

Replacement body organs, aeroplane parts and a music box. Come find these 3D printed objects and over 600 more on display in a new exhibition. Explore the rapidly evolving field of 3D printing and its growing impact on society through the key sectors in which the technology is driving innovation – industry, medicine and small-scale projects and businesses.

Suitable for

  • Family friendly

Website

http://www.sciencemuseum.org.uk/visitmuseum/plan_your_visit/exhibitions/3d_printing_the_future

photograph of Bernat Cuni's crayon creatures

3D: Printing the Future

  • 9 October 2013 — 4 January 2015 *on now

3D printers inspire creativity: the exhibition wall is an explosion of over 600 printed objects. But where’s the real innovation?

Explore this exhibition to discover how innovators are using 3D printers to turn computer data into physical objects that could change your life. The stories we’ve uncovered focus on the future of industry, medicine and whether 3D printing will change your shopping experience.

See lighter, more efficient plane parts created through 3D printing that could save fuel on your flights.

Check out 3D printed replacement body parts – from those already used today, to the possible 3D printed organs of the future.

Discover the open-source mechanical hand that carpenter Richard Van As made on a consumer machine to replace his missing fingers.

And see how 3D printing can inspire artists in Inversive Embodiment, an intricate sculptural work by Tobias Klein that incorporates MRI scans and St Paul’s Cathedral.

How will 3D printing shape your future?

Suitable for

  • Family friendly

Website

http://www.sciencemuseum.org.uk/visitmuseum/Plan_your_visit/exhibitions/3D_printing_the_future.aspx

Mind Maps: Stories from Psychology

  • 10 December 2013 — 26 October 2014 *on now

Stories of how mental health has been treated over the past 250 years will be the focus of the new exhibition Mind Maps: Stories from psychology. Divided into four episodes between 1780 and 2014, the exhibition will look at key breakthroughs in scientists’ understanding of mental health and the tools and methods of treatment that have been developed, from Mesmerism to Electroconvulsive Therapy (ECT) and Cognitive Behaviour Therapy (CBT). The free exhibition will be illustrated through a rich display of objects from the Museum’s world-class medical collections as well as artworks and archive images.

Suitable for

  • Family friendly

Website

http://www.sciencemuseum.org.uk/visitmuseum/Plan_your_visit/exhibitions/mind_maps.aspx

photograph of the science museum

Mind Maps: Stories from Psychology

  • 10 December 2013 — 16 September 2014 *on now

Divided into four episodes between 1780 and 2014, the exhibition will look at key breakthroughs in scientists’ understanding of psychological wellbeing and the tools and methods of assessment and treatment that have been developed from Mesmerism to Cognitive Behavioural Therapy (CBT) to recent advances in understanding brain function and activity.

The exhibition will be illustrated through a rich display of objects from the Museum’s world-class medical collections as well as artworks and archive images.

photograph of Electron capture detector for a gas chromatograph

Unlocking Lovelock

  • 9 April 2014 — 9 April 2015 *on now

Delve into the archives of James Lovelock, one of Britain’s most important living scientists and inventors, in our new exhibition.

Featuring previously unseen materials acquired by the Science Museum in 2012, the exhibition gives a unique insight into Lovelock’s creative mind, personality and unconventional ideas.

James Lovelock’s career has spanned scientific fields as diverse as medicine, environmental science, atmospheric chemistry and space exploration. He is most famous for formulating the Gaia hypothesis – the idea that Earth is a self-regulating system. This theory has been both hugely influential and controversial. It has profoundly shaped how environmental scientists view issues such as climate change and loss of biodiversity.

Among the highlights of the exhibition are Lovelock’s laboratory notebooks, drafts of his papers and equipment from the laboratory in his back garden, where some of his most important work was done. The exhibition also features tools used by Lovelock to build many of his inventions, including a watchmaker’s lathe and the home-made gas chromatography equipment that journeyed to the Antarctic and back and proved crucial to scientists’ current understanding of global atmospheric pollution.

Unlocking Lovelock provides a unique insight into the life of this extraordinary man and illustrates the enormous value of archives as a resource for future research.

Suitable for

  • Any age

Website

http://www.sciencemuseum.org.uk/visitmuseum/Plan_your_visit/exhibitions/lovelock.aspx

The Exponential Horn: In Search of Perfect Sound

  • 20 May — 27 July 2014 *on now

Tune in to the Science Museum this spring to witness the re-sounding of the UK’s largest ever audio loudspeaker. A full-size reconstruction of the gigantic ‘Denman horn’ will be the centerpiece of an innovative new art installation by Aleksander Kolkowski in our Virgin Media Studio, exploring and celebrating the artefact and its history through newly created sounds, music and the spoken word. Alongside the installation will be a wide-ranging programme of events and audio demonstrations, featuring live broadcasts, sound art and archive radio footage from contributors including the BBC History, Resonance 104.4FM, BBC Radio 3, Archive of the Now, London College of Communication, Royal College of Music, and Royal College of Art.

Suitable for

  • Family friendly

Website

http://www.sciencemuseum.org.uk/exponentialhorn

The Rubbish Collection

  • 16 June — 14 September 2014 *on now

Discover the beauty, value and volume of the ‘rubbish’ we produce in our upcoming, unique two-part exhibition, which traces the journey of waste generated by the Museum over 30 days, as part of our Climate Changing programme. Artist Joshua Sofaer invites you to participate in collecting, sorting, photographing and documenting one month’s worth of rubbish produced by the Science Museum’s visitors, staff, contractors and exhibition projects, to help create a visual day-to-day archive of our rubbish. The exhibition will expose the materials, the volume and the intrigue surrounding what we think of as ‘rubbish’, before it continues its onward journey to be recycled.

Suitable for

  • Family friendly

Website

http://www.sciencemuseum.org.uk/rubbishcollection

The Rubbish Collection

  • 16 June — 14 September 2014 *on now

Discover the beauty, value and volume of ‘rubbish’ we produce in our upcoming, unique two-part exhibition, which traces the journey of waste generated by the Museum over 30 days, as part of our Climate Changing programme.

Artist Joshua Sofaer invites you to participate in collecting, sorting, photographing and documenting one month’s worth of rubbish produced by the Science Museum’s visitors, staff, contractors and exhibition projects, to help create a visual day-to-day archive of our rubbish. The exhibition will expose the materials, the volume and the intrigue surrounding what we think of as ‘rubbish’, before it continues its onward journey to be recycled.

Through beautiful displays of waste materials at various stages of processing, Phase Two of the exhibition highlights that the things we throw away do not simply disappear - here they will instead be transformed to showcase the value and beauty that can be found in waste we produce.

What does one month of rubbish from one institution look like? Be part of this compelling exhibition that invites you appreciate the impact and the fate of what we throw away.

Suitable for

  • Any age

Website

http://www.sciencemuseum.org.uk/visitmuseum/Plan_your_visit/exhibitions/rubbish_collection.aspx

Unlocking Lovelock: Scientist, Inventor, Maverick

  • 1 July 2014 — 9 April 2015 *on now

A new exhibition celebrating the life and 70 year career of British scientist and inventor James Lovelock. Featuring highlights from a remarkable archive of material acquired by the Science Museum in 2012, the exhibition will include images of the scientist’s laboratory alongside notebooks, photographs, manuscripts and audio-visual material – providing a unique insight into Lovelock’s creative mind and remarkable achievements.

Suitable for

  • Family friendly

Website

http://www.sciencemuseum.org.uk/visitmuseum/Plan_your_visit/exhibitions/lovelock.aspx

Joan Fontcuberta: Stranger than Fiction

  • 23 July — 9 November 2014 *on now

An eye-opening collection of photographs and artefacts is set to intrigue visitors to the Science Museum this summer as Media Space stages the first major UK exhibition by award-winning Catalan artist Joan Fontcuberta. Fontcuberta subtly questions the use of the photographic image as evidence, by combining visually compelling and mischievous narratives with an acute, deadpan humour. With highlights including astonishing photographs of mermaid fossils and incredible reports on mysterious fauna, Stranger Than Fiction presents six conceptually independent narratives from Fontcuberta’s body of work
a visual universe in which the real and the imagined combine to startling effect.

Suitable for

  • Family friendly

Website

http://www.sciencemuseum.org.uk/visitmuseum/Plan_your_visit/exhibitions/joan_fontcuberta.aspx

Open for Buisness

  • 22 August — 2 November 2014

Open for Business is the story of contemporary British manufacturing and industry told through the lens of nine Magnum photographers, including Martin Parr and Chris Steele-Perkins. Their photographs offer subjects that range from traditional handmade crafts to modern intelligent automation
from foundries and assembly lines to research laboratories and high tech cleanrooms, showing an economic sector of extraordinary resilience and diversity. Visiting over 100 workplaces across the UK, photographs were contributed by Jonas Bendiksen, Stuart Franklin, Bruce Gilden, David Hurn, Peter Marlow, Martin Parr, Mark Power, Chris Steele-Perkins and Alessandra Sanguinetti.

Suitable for

  • Family friendly

Website

http://www.sciencemuseum.org.uk/visitmuseum/Plan_your_visit/exhibitions/open_for_business.aspx

Information age

  • 1 October 2014 — 31 December 2016

Information Age will be the first museum gallery in the UK dedicated to the history of communication and information technology, celebrating over 200 years of inventions and innovations that have transformed how we communicate. The gallery will take over the largest single space in the Science Museum and feature over 800 unique objects from our world class collections.

From the laying of the first transatlantic telegraph cable between the UK and North America, to the birth of satellite communications and the smart phone, Information Age will explore the major technological advances that have helped shape the connected world we live in today. Remarkable personal stories about how these developments have transformed peoples’ lives will be brought to life through sophisticated interactive displays, film and audio.

Suitable for

  • Family friendly

Website

http://www.sciencemuseum.org.uk/

Cosmonauts: Birth of the Space Age

  • 1 November 2014 — 17 May 2015

For the first time in the UK, the remarkable story of Russian scientific and technological ingenuity that kick-started the space age will be explored in a landmark new exhibition at the Science Museum. Cosmonauts will bring to life the stories of Russian space endeavour to dramatic life through a unique collection of space artefacts, many of which have never before been seen outside Russia.  Amongst the star objects on display will be real, cosmonaut-flown spacecraft, pioneering rocket engines, space suits and other life support systems. There will also be examples of the personal and poignant - memorabilia belonging to some of the biggest names in spaceflight. Cosmonauts represents a major collaboration between the Moscow State Memorial Museum of Cosmonautics and the Federal Space Agency, Roscosmos, and draws on the support of many institutions and individuals in the UK and Russia to bring together the most significant collection of space artefacts ever to leave Russia.

Suitable for

  • Family friendly

Website

http://www.sciencemuseum.org.uk/cosmonauts

photograph of Yuri Gagarin before the first space flight, April 12 1961

Cosmonauts: Birth of the Space Age

  • 1 November 2014 — 1 May 2015

Discover dramatic stories of Russian space exploration this new temporary exhibition. Opening November 2014 and running for 6 months.

For the first time in the UK, the remarkable story of Russian scientific and technological ingenuity that kick-started the space age is to be explored in a landmark new exhibition at the Science Museum.

Cosmonauts will bring to life the stories of Russian space endeavour to dramatic life through a unique collection of space artefacts, many of which have never before been seen either outside Russia.

In 1957 Soviet Russia launched Sputnik, the world's first artificial satellite, and four years later it sent the first human into space - Yuri Gagarin. However, the story of Russian space exploration is much older. Cosmonauts will explore the science and technology of Russian space travel in its cultural and spiritual context, revealing a deep rooted national yearning for space that was shaped by the turbulent early decades of the twentieth century.

Amongst the star objects on display will be real, cosmonaut-flown spacecraft, pioneering rocket engines, space suits and other life support systems. There will also be examples of the personal and poignant - memorabilia belonging to some of the biggest names in spaceflight.

Cosmonauts represents a major collaboration between the Moscow State Memorial Museum of Cosmonautics and the Federal Space Agency, Roscosmos, and draws on the support of many institutions and individuals in the UK and Russia to bring together the most significant collection of space artefacts ever to leave Russia.

Suitable for

  • Any age

Website

http://www.sciencemuseum.org.uk/visitmuseum/coming_soon/cosmonauts.aspx

Events details are listed below. You may need to scroll down or click on headers to see them all. For events that don't have a specific date see the 'Resources' tab above.

What's in a word?

  • 15 July — 21 August 2014 *on now

Take part in a real study, and help scientists from University College London find out!  Play fun word-based games to help the researchers discover whether some words sound more like their meaning than others. From 15 July – 21 August: Tuesdays, Thursdays and Saturdays, 11.00–13.00 & 14.00–17.30.

Suitable for

  • Family friendly

Website

http://www.sciencemuseum.org.uk/visitmuseum/Plan_your_visit/events/demonstrations_and_experiments/live_science.aspx

Science Museum Live: The Energy Show

  • 22 July — 3 August 2014 *on now

Recognised by reviewers in 2013 as a ‘fantastic and brilliant must-see’, audiences will again have the opportunity to join futuristic science students Annabella and Phil as they race against time to prove their knowledge of energy through a series of live experiments. Featuring a virtual assistant named i-nstein and a steampunk workshop full of gadgets and chemicals, Annabella and Phil use liquid nitrogen, hydrogen rockets and electricity to create a dangerously exciting experience. Produced exclusively by Science Museum Live, The Energy Show tour will travel to over 30 venues. The Science Museum will be the first and last stop on the tour, with performances from 3-11 April and 22 July – 3 August 2014.

Suitable for

  • Family friendly

Website

http://www.sciencemuseum.org.uk/visitmuseum/plan_your_visit/theatre_shows/the_energy_show.aspx

Lates: Brazil: Science, Samba and Football

  • 30 July 2014 6:45-10pm

Discover Brazilian science, music, dancing and the science behind football at this month’s Lates with MasterCard. The Science Museum has worked with Braziliarty, which promotes Brazilian arts and culture abroad, to feature Brazilian science and culture at Lates. Visitors can also enjoy the regular highlights of a pub quiz, silent disco and Punk Science comedy show at Lates on Wednesday 30 July, 18.45 – 22.00.

Suitable for

Website

http://www.sciencemuseum.org.uk/lates

Lates: Science of Hedonism - Sex, Drugs and Rock'n'Roll

  • 27 August 2014 6:45-10pm

The Science Museum’s Lates with MasterCard is a free night for adults, no booking required, that takes place on the last Wednesday of the month. Lates are themed, spanning issues as far apart as sex, alcohol and climate change, but always contain science shows, a pub quiz, Punk Science comedy shows and the best silent disco in town (underneath real space rockets). Dubbed ‘drinking and thinking’ by visitors, Lates regularly attracts over 3000 adults each night, with DJs and bars on three floors of the museum.

Suitable for

Website

http://www.sciencemuseum.org.uk/lates

Lates: Science of Illusion

  • 24 September 2014 6:45-10pm

The Science Museum’s Lates with MasterCard is a free night for adults, no booking required, that takes place on the last Wednesday of the month. Lates are themed, spanning issues as far apart as sex, alcohol and climate change, but always contain science shows, a pub quiz, Punk Science comedy shows and the best silent disco in town (underneath real space rockets). Dubbed ‘drinking and thinking’ by visitors, Lates regularly attracts over 3000 adults each night, with DJs and bars on three floors of the museum.

Suitable for

Website

http://www.sciencemuseum.org.uk/lates

Lates: Eat, Drink, Think

  • 29 October 2014 6:45-10pm

The Science Museum’s Lates with MasterCard is a free night for adults, no booking required, that takes place on the last Wednesday of the month. Lates are themed, spanning issues as far apart as sex, alcohol and climate change, but always contain science shows, a pub quiz, Punk Science comedy shows and the best silent disco in town (underneath real space rockets). Dubbed ‘drinking and thinking’ by visitors, Lates regularly attracts over 3000 adults each night, with DJs and bars on three floors of the museum.

Suitable for

Website

http://www.sciencemuseum.org.uk/lates

Lates: Information Age

  • 26 November 2014 6:45-10pm

The Science Museum’s Lates with MasterCard is a free night for adults, no booking required, that takes place on the last Wednesday of the month. Lates are themed, spanning issues as far apart as sex, alcohol and climate change, but always contain science shows, a pub quiz, Punk Science comedy shows and the best silent disco in town (underneath real space rockets). Dubbed ‘drinking and thinking’ by visitors, Lates regularly attracts over 3000 adults each night, with DJs and bars on three floors of the museum.

Suitable for

Website

http://www.sciencemuseum.org.uk/lates

Resources listed here may include websites, bookable tours and workshops, books, loan boxes and more. You may need to scroll down or click on headers to see them all.

Building Bonanza Low Energy House Game

http://www.sciencemuseum.org.uk/onlinestuff/games/building_bonanza.aspx

Try to build a "house of the future" by selecting the most environmentally friendly, low-energy materials and features in this online interactive game.

Challenge of Materials

http://www.sciencemuseum.org.uk/on-line/challenge/

An online exhibition about materials, with interactive elements exploring types of materials, selecting materials, making materials, and 'world-changing' materials.

Creator

  • Science Museum

Publisher

  • Science Museum

Energy - fuelling the future

http://www.sciencemuseum.org.uk/exhibitions/energy/

A website designed to help KS2 and KS3 children find out about how we use energy, and make the most of a visit to the Energy Fuelling the Future gallery at the Science Museum. Here you will find fascinating facts, quizzes, and a wealth of practical activities developed with teachers who have tested them with their own children in schools. Many of the activities can be adapted for different audiences.

Creator

  • Science Museum

Kids' Science Book Club

http://www.sciencemuseum.org.uk/about_us/membership/kids_science_book_club.aspx

The Kids Science Book Club is a fun and interactive book club to encourage children to read and learn whilst enjoying a literary extravaganza. It’s a great way to learn more about science in a fun way. On Saturdays, monthly at 11.00.

How to obtain

Booking is essential - email membership@sciencemuseum.org.uk or call 020 7942 4333.

Making the Modern World: Bridges

http://www.makingthemodernworld.org.uk/learning_modules/maths/02.TU.03/

This mathematics study module, available online, looks at how differently shaped bridges, built at different periods of time, handle loads and stress.

Making the Modern World: Urban Sustainability - Cities and the Role of Technology

http://www.makingthemodernworld.org.uk/learning_modules/geography/04.TU.01/?section=14

This geography study module, available online, looks at urban development. Case studies are taken from cities around the world, and demonstrate cities as different kinds of systems, sustainability, and how technological developments affect urban life.

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