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The Ed Muirhead Physics Museum Parkville, VIC

The Ed Muirhead Physics Museum at the University of Melbourne comprises a collection of items of historical and scientific interest, concentrating on scientific apparatus constructed by former professors and staff for research purposes. It includes equipment and photographs spanning the history of the School of Physics, which was established as the School of Natural Philosophy in the 1880's.

There are significant holdings of ruling engines and diffraction gratings developed by Grayson and Lyle as well as apparatus emerging from optical munitions research directed by Laby during the Second World War.

The Museum owes its creation to the dedication and forethought of Associate Professor Ed Muirhead, Chairman of the School of Physics from 1980 to 1986, who initiated the museum in the 1980s. The collection was catalogued with the aid of then curator, Ms Anna Fairclough, and the museum displays set up with a grant from the Ian Potter Foundation.

The Ed Muirhead Physics Museum has had continuing outstanding support from the Cultural Collections Group and the Russell and Mab Grimwade Miegunyah Fund. In 2008 The Friends of the Physics Museum was initiated by colleagues and past students of Ed Muirhead.

Links

Contact Information

location
Level 2, The School of Physics, David Caro Building (192) Corner of Elgin and Swanston Streets The University of Melbourne Parkville Victoria 3010 (map)
phone
+61 03 8344 5076

Contact

Opening Hours

Opening hours: 9am to 5pm Monday to Friday Closed between Christmas and New Year and on public holidays. We are located in the Laby/Hercus lecture foyer The School of Physics is on the corner of Swanston and Elgin Streets

Entry Fee

FREE

Location

Level 2, The School of Physics, David Caro Building (192) Corner of Elgin and Swanston Streets The University of Melbourne Parkville VIC

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The Ed Muirhead Physics Museum at the University of Melbourne comprises a collection of items of historical and scientific interest, concentrating on scientific apparatus constructed by former professors and staff for research purposes. It includes equipment and photographs spanning the history of the School of Physics, which was established as the School of Natural Philosophy in the 1880's.

There are significant holdings of ruling engines and diffraction gratings developed by Grayson and Lyle as well as apparatus emerging from optical munitions research directed by Laby during the Second World War.

The Museum owes its creation to the dedication and forethought of Associate Professor Ed Muirhead, Chairman of the School of Physics from 1980 to 1986, who initiated the museum in the 1980s. The collection was catalogued with the aid of then curator, Ms Anna Fairclough, and the museum displays set up with a grant from the Ian Potter Foundation.

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469 items

FACIT Mechanical Model C1-13

The Ed Muirhead Physics Museum, Parkville

Plaque: Made by Atvidaberg - FACIT / Sweden keys: 8 x 13 x 13

Photograph, Optical Munitions: Notman

The Ed Muirhead Physics Museum, Parkville

Black and white photograph showing young man (Notman) working on graphic designs at a draft board.

Inscriptions & Markings

On front of image in ink: “19” On back of image in pencil: “Notman No. 19” On back of image in ink: “19”

Photograph of Analysing magnet 5Mev Pelletron

The Ed Muirhead Physics Museum, Parkville

The Photograph is of the main 90 degree analysing magnet.

Suspension Galvanometer, H. Tinsley & Co.

The Ed Muirhead Physics Museum, Parkville

Assembled, cast. Stenciled. Accessories: dials. Surface finish: coated.

Inscriptions & Markings

Paper label adhered with tape: “SUSPENSION BUST?” Stamped label: “NAT. PHIL. LAB./No17/UNIV. OF MELB.” Inscribed on rim: “H. TINSLEY & Co/LONDON. S.E./No9722

Stamp album - The International Stamp Album

The Ed Muirhead Physics Museum, Parkville

Brown and black, hardcover stamp collector's album titled 'The International Stamp Album' and featuring pages sectioned by country with a grid layout for adhering stamps. A mix of blank pages and pages with various numbers of stamps.

Resistance Ratio Bridge, J.L. William

The Ed Muirhead Physics Museum, Parkville

Machine-made/cut, appears to be lathe turned. Electroplated, no apparent decorative elements. 14 rotatable, removable nuts. Surface finish: Brushed metal.

Inscriptions & Markings

“Ratio Resistance’ Handwritten pen on paper adhered with sticky tape on top circular face. Medallion screwed to top circular face: “J.L. WILLIAM/SCIENTIFIC INSTRUMENTS/ SERIAL NO. TYPE/ MELBOURNE - AUSTRALIA.” Machine-made manufacturer’s label, enamel on brass plate (unconfirmed) screw fixed, “Resistance/between/the knobs/as shown/Resistances (+0.05 at most). Handwritten pen on aged paper label attached with coated twine.

Galvanometer,Thomson (suspended magnet)

The Ed Muirhead Physics Museum, Parkville

Brass and glass case enclosing two sets of coils; surmounted by a vertical rod on which a compensating (?) magnet may be moved either vertically or rotated in a horizontal plane; 3 levelling screws and spirit level.

Inscriptions & Markings

Engraved on top of cylinder: “Nalder Bros and Co., Westminster No. 36521”

Lens with box and lid

The Ed Muirhead Physics Museum, Parkville

Round glass lens stored in rectangular cardboard box with lid and supported by cotton wool.

Inscriptions & Markings

On inside of box in pencil: “20/1/40 (?dictatomigialls of l/4). On top of box: “wray flat”.

Hewlett Packard 9100B Calculator

The Ed Muirhead Physics Museum, Parkville

Scientific and Programmeable Calculator with paper roll printout

BEROLINA Mechanical

The Ed Muirhead Physics Museum, Parkville

Keys: 9 x 7 x 12

Inscriptions & Markings

Ernst Schuster, Berlin SW 68

Statitron Analysing Magnet

The Ed Muirhead Physics Museum, Parkville

The Statitron beam was analysed by a ninety degree annular magnetic spectrograph.The magnet had a radius of curvature of 30cm. The winding consisted of 30 layers of 15 B&S enamelled copper wire, about 4000 turns in all and could carry a current of 5 amperes.

Length Standards, 3 six inch

The Ed Muirhead Physics Museum, Parkville

(1) Glass rectangular scale (1-(1)-6 inch); (2)ditto steel rectangular scale, (3) ditto metal cylindrical rod. Enclosed in black hinged box with purple velvet lining. 65.1 = steel scale, 65.2 = glass scale, 65.3=steel rod, 65.4 = box. See #63 “Washington Certified Standards.

Inscriptions & Markings

Labels on top of box: “Length standards used by U.B. Grayson” “40aJJR” “Washington certified standards 1.6 inch steel scale, 1.6 inch glass scale, 1.6 inch steel rod. For particulars see certificate 1915” Engraved on glass scale: “BSN 394” “H.J.G. Melb Univ. 1915” “13.0C” “1 2 3 4 5 6” Engraved on steel scale: “BSN 393, H.J.G. Melb Univ. 1915” “ruled at 12.8C” (H,J,G, = Henry Grayson)

Photograph, Optical Munitions, with R.L. Abbey

The Ed Muirhead Physics Museum, Parkville

Part of a series entitled “Optical Munitions - School of Natural Philosophy, 1942-1945”. Black and white photo of R.L.Abbey looking through telescope of optical spectrometer..

Inscriptions & Markings

In ink on lower left hand corner : “21”.

Galvanometer, Tinsley

The Ed Muirhead Physics Museum, Parkville

Rectangular galvanometer

Inscriptions & Markings

Plaque: “Galvanometer, Type 4600A, No. 55822, H. Tinsley & Co., London S.E. 25”

Tube, Geiger counter partly constructed , one end complete.

The Ed Muirhead Physics Museum, Parkville

Clear glass tube, about 50 % completed by glass blower towards Geiger counter construction.

Photograph, Cyclotron accelerator

The Ed Muirhead Physics Museum, Parkville

Black and white photo of cyclotron (nuclear physics accelerator): Main generator set.

Historical information

Builit in 1950s and used till the mid 1970s within the Physics Department used in Melbourne. John Rouse and David Caro was involved in the construction.

Inscriptions & Markings

Sticky typed labels on back from top and left to right: “MAIN GENERATOR SET” Handwritten in pencil on top left hand corner: “11”

Photograph, Optical Munitions, with G. Ampt & E.J. Hartung

The Ed Muirhead Physics Museum, Parkville

Part of a series entitled “Optical Munitions - School of Natural Philosophy, 1942-1945”. Black and white photo of Gus. Ampt and Professor Hartung examining experimental pots of optical glass; the pots have been halved in order to make the examination..

Inscriptions & Markings

In ink on lower left hand corner : “37”.

OLIVETTI Elettrosumma 20

The Ed Muirhead Physics Museum, Parkville

Electric Adding Machine Paper Tape Output Plaque: ivrea made in Italy fabrique en Italie v 120-220/ 2 40 Hz 50 From the Department of Statistice

Photograph, Cyclotron accelerator

The Ed Muirhead Physics Museum, Parkville

Black and white photo of cyclotron (nuclear physics accelerator): Tritium recirculating system.

Historical information

Builit in 1950s and used till the mid 1970s within the Physics Department used in Melbourne. John Rouse and David Caro was involved in the construction.

Inscriptions & Markings

Sticky typed labels on back from top to bottom: “H3 RECIRCULATING SYSTEM”

Photograph, Optical Munitions, with R.L. Abbey

The Ed Muirhead Physics Museum, Parkville

Refer to Cat No 141 for full details. Black and white photo shows Ray Abbey looking through telescope of optical spectrometer. Duplicate copy of Cat no 141; in OMP Album Vol 2 #21.

Inscriptions & Markings

In ink on lower left hand corner: “21”. Inscribed on back in pencil: “No. 21 R.L.ABBEY”

Photograph, Cyclotron accelerator

The Ed Muirhead Physics Museum, Parkville

Black and white photo of cyclotron (nuclear physics accelerator): Dee & beam exit. Image shows Ron Gray at work.

Historical information

Builit in 1950s and used till the mid 1970s within the Physics Department used in Melbourne. John Rouse and David Caro was involved in the construction.

Inscriptions & Markings

Sticky typed labels on back from top and left to right: “MAIN MAGNET WATER HEAT EXCHANGE, VIEW OF DEE & BEAM EXIT, COIL CANS” Handwritten in pen in bottom right hand corner: “Ron Gray”

Interferometer - Michelson

The Ed Muirhead Physics Museum, Parkville

A student demonstration or general laboratory model capable of calibrating the pitch of the mechanical thread in terms of the wavelength ofvisible light, specifically a chosen emission line from the spectra of say mercury. The interferometer is pictured in a newspaper article ( “AFternoon with Scientists, ARGUS 6/5/1920 p.5); the a

Inscriptions & Markings

A. HILGER , LONDON Part no N2 301/20 200

X-Ray Milli-Ammeter, Victor

The Ed Muirhead Physics Museum, Parkville

Cast in mold, machine made. Dipped coating on main body. Glass window. Surface finish: black plastic coating, glass.

Inscriptions & Markings

“X-RAY/ MILLI-AMMETER/ PATENTED AUG. 30, 1904/ VICTOR” On rim near left hand side screw there are yellow markings- one marking is in the shape of a cross and the other resembles the symbol of a fish.

Photograph, Optical Munitions, with Mr Kakanine

The Ed Muirhead Physics Museum, Parkville

Part of a series entitled “Optical Munitions - School of Natural Philosophy, 1942-1945”. Black and white photo of Mr Kakanine, draughtsman, draawing graphic design plans.

Inscriptions & Markings

In ink on lower left hand corner : “31”.

MONROE

The Ed Muirhead Physics Museum, Parkville

Electrical Keys: 10 x 10 x 20

Camera and accessory box

The Ed Muirhead Physics Museum, Parkville

Camera and accessory box with accessories and handbook stored inside.

Photograph, Optical Munitions: Optical glass

The Ed Muirhead Physics Museum, Parkville

Black and white photograph showing male hands preparing glass for fusing. Same photo as 144.

Inscriptions & Markings

On front of image in ink: “24” On back of image in pencil: “No. 24 Glass Preparation for fusing” On back of image in ink: “24”

Universal Shunt, H. Tinsley & Co.

The Ed Muirhead Physics Museum, Parkville

Cast, assembled. Polished, coated. Accessories: brass dials. Surface finish: polished, coated.

Inscriptions & Markings

Inscribed on upper face: “No 18624/ UNIVERSAL SHUNT/[Calibration measuring units 1-2000]/H. TINSLEY & Co LONDON. S.E.”

Galvanometer, William

The Ed Muirhead Physics Museum, Parkville

Rectangular galvanometer made of black enamelled metal. Made in Melbourne, Australia by JL William

Inscriptions & Markings

Plaque on front: “Direct Current Galvanometer Resistance 65 ohms, critical resistance 1100 ohms, sensitivity 1250mm/ma, Instrument No. 441.5.JL. William Melb. Aust.”

ARCHIMEDES Model LL-K (electrical)

The Ed Muirhead Physics Museum, Parkville

Keys: 10 x 11 x 20 ELECTRICAL!