Last week the Kumpula's Women Network (see previous post) had a nice spring event at Helsinki Observatory, in the City Centre. Two lectures in Finnish were held by Eva Isaksson, astronomy librarian who's passionate about women in science, and Päivi Harjunpää, head of the Observatory. After a pleasant lunch, the head guide Paula Kyyrö showed us the astronomy museum, the observatory old tower and even the planetarium.
The Helsinki Observatory was built in the 1830s by the famous German architect Carl Ludvig Engel, after the relocation of Turku University in the current capital city (in the post featured image, you can see how the building looked like in 1870). Since the city grew around the building, and so the light and smoke pollution, nowadays the observatory cannot be used as an observation facility and it is committed to teaching and showing purposes. Several classes, from daycare to university level, come to visit the building and learn some astronomy.
A small trivia I learned during my visit: the Milky Way is called Linnunrata in Finnish ("the way of the bird"). When I asked why such name, I was told that apparently birds follow a similar path in the sky when migrating in winter time. Such a different name from Milky Way!
Here you can find some pictures of the event.
There are two upcoming events to connect women researchers of University of Helsinki, so mark your calendars:
- meet us in the Dynamicum lobby on Monday June 1st, at 11.30 am, for the monthly informal lunch.
- There will be a cider tasting event in Sörnainen on Tuesday June 9th at 5 pm. Cost per person is approximately 20 €. If you are interested, get in touch.