Keep your eyes on the stars and your feet on the ground

Posted on November 18, 2014 by Falando do Brasil in Places

Exhibits at the Museum of Astronomy and Related Sciences transport visitors through the Universe


Do you know the origino f the term “knots” in navigation? Do you know the difference between a meridian and an equeatorial lunette? These answers and many others can be found in the Museum of Astronomy and Related Sciences. The 44 thousand square meters terrain in São Cristóvão where the National Observatory is built also serves as headquarters for MAST.

observatorio nacional
The museum was created, in fact, to absorb pieces from the Observatory that would be discarded, back in 1985. Besides the technical reserve that the pieces make, there are exhibits planned especially for children. On the ground floor, the show “Looking at the Sky, Measuring the Earth” gathers original objects and replica to show the audience some Geography, History and all of the other “related sciences” on the museum’s name. On the underground level, the focus passes to astronomy. Interactive miniatures of the Earth connect the visitor to everything he or she learned (or was supposed to) inside the classroom: phases of the Moon, the tilt on the Earth’s axis, constellations and galaxies. “We’re not here to give answers. We’re here to swap information”, says Carlos Henrique, who works at the education sector since its inauguration. “This is an interactive museum; if you don’t ask about things, ther’s no fun.” The museum is currently holding the temporary exhibits “Photography: science and art”, that gathers scientific images, and “Chemistry in the History of the Universe, the Earth and the Body”, which presents instruments from other areas of science with some application in Chemistry. Both are on the second floor, as well as the museum’s library (that has a collection focused on the history of science).
But the museum isn’t just about the main building. At Mast’s campus, you can see the second biggest meteorite to ever land on Brazil (borrowed from the National Museum of Natural History) and the lunette pavillions used by the Observatory’s astronomers, that now house miniature exhibits. On every Saturday and the first Wednesday of each month, the audience can observe stars with the museum’s centennary lunette – when the weather cooperates and the sky is clear. Feira de São Cristóvão‘s neighbour deserves an entire afternoon of your calendar to be visited from the beginning to the end. There are guided tours through the exhibits every Saturday at 3 and 5PM, but you can also book a tour, in case you’re taking a large group. It’s worth reminding: entrance is free.
feira de sao cristovao
Feira de Sao Cristóvão: Rua General Bruce, 586 – São Cristovao‎ Rio de Janeiro – RJ, 20921-030
Bairro: Rua General Bruce, 586 – São Cristovao‎ Rio de Janeiro – RJ, 20921-030
Horário: Terça-feira, Quarta-feira, Quinta-feira e Sexta-feira às 09:00 até 17:00
Preço: Free entry
Mais informações:
Autor: Katharina Farina

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