Urban Sputnik

Urban Sputnik is a new interactive cosmology exhibit currently showing at the Royal Institution. It was created by Vanessa Harden and Dominic Southgate of Gammaroot Design collaborating with some Imperial Astrophysicists: me, Dave Clements and Roberto Trotta. Unlike my other recent foray into the science/art overlap, this one is a bit more didactic (that is, scientifically accurate!)

We’ve designed five different exhibits, and, supported by an award from the STFC, Vanessa and Dominic have made two of them. One tries to show how the shape of the Universe can seem flat up close, but curved due to the mass and energy on the largest scales. Another shows how the expansion of the Universe results in a redshift — light from further away loses energy, changing its wavelength and frequency.

The pieces are on display at the Royal Institution through 29 July, and there’s a closing event on Thursday 28 July where we’ll talk about the exhibit and both the science and design principles behind it (the event is free, but tickets are recommended to be sure you get a seat!).