Collection of scientific instruments


There are currently 224 scientific instruments on display in 17 cases. Most were used for physics teaching and research at the Old Academy of Lausanne and, since 1890, at the University of Lausanne (UNIL). Each instrument is accompanied by a brief explanatory note in French. The time period covered is approximately from 1775 to 1960.


The Collection of Scientific Instruments is largely the result of more than two centuries’ worth of experimental physics teaching and research at the Old Academy of Lausanne, and at the University of Lausanne (UNIL).

Several instruments in the collection are of historical and scientific significance. Here is a selection.

Physics in Lausanne

The Old Academy of Lausanne was founded in 1537. Continuous experimental physics teaching, with lectures including demonstrations that required a collection of instruments, only began in 1776.