Whitby and the Cosmos

We are extremely excited about our next exhibition “Whitby and the Cosmos”.

Sponsored by the Royal Society as part of their places of science scheme, the exhibition will showcase the importance of Whitby and the surrounding area in scientific research both above and below ground.

The centrepiece of the exhibition will be the ZEPLIN III dark matter detector which was used at Boulby Underground Laboratory until 2011 and has been donated to the Museum by Imperial College London. The exhibition will tell the story of the remarkable and internationally important work taking place at Boulby. More than a kilometre below the earth’s surface the laboratory is the only facility in the UK where studies into the universe’s dark matter can be carried out almost entirely free of interference from natural background radiation.

But Whitby’s scientific contribution goes much further back than that. In 1768 Captain James Cook’s voyage was commissioned by the Royal Society to map the transit of Venus. This allowed astronomers to calculate the distance from the earth to the sun and other planets. The exhibition will highlight Captain Cook’s role as an innovator in scientific exploration whose work contributed to our current understanding of the universe.

The exhibition will open on Saturday 16th February and run until 20th July.

There will also be a public lecture entitled “The Search for Dark Matter” when you can find out more about this fascinating subject. The lecture will take place at 7pm on Friday 15th February at the Museum. Tickets are free but are limited. Book your place via our Eventbrite page by clicking here.

We are extremely grateful to the Royal Society, Imperial College London, Boulby Underground Laboratory and ICL (owners of Boulby Mine) for their help and support in staging this exciting exhibition.



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ZEPLIN III Dark Matter Detector


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