Mirjam Savioja

Exhibition “Tartu – Rich in Research” presents success stories from the history of science

On 26 January, the exhibition in the Tartu 2024 programme, “Tartu – Rich in Research”, opened. It showcases 24 success stories from Tartu’s rich scientific heritage, focusing on the discoveries of dozens of University of Tartu researchers that have significantly impacted global advancements in science, improved human well-being and helped us better understand our surroundings.

Several scientists who have worked in Tartu have shattered myths. For example, they have proved that the universe is not eternal but merely a few billion years old and that mammoths were not southern animals who perished in the great flood.

Among other things, the studies by Feodor Klement, then Rector of Tartu State University, on luminescence research have helped create today’s energy-efficient LED lamps, and the research of Wilhelm Struve, Director of Tartu Observatory, helps understand the cosmos better and produce more accurate maps of the Earth. The exhibition also presents information about several groundbreaking medical discoveries that have improved the quality of treatment and advanced surgery. At the University of Tartu, sterilised rubber gloves were first introduced, and foundations were laid for modern haemostasis theory, indispensable knowledge for blood transfusions.

Find out more about all this and other fascinating facts at the exhibition “Tartu – Rich in Research”, which will be open on Küüni street in the coming weeks. After that, the exhibits will be displayed for a few weeks at the University of Tartu Hospital and again on Küüni street from the end of March until the end of the summer.

The author of the texts presenting Tartu’s scientific heritage is Erki Tammiksaar, Associate Professor in History in Geography at the University of Tartu. Other contributors include Marco Kirm, Karl Pajusalu, Kalevi Kull, Kristiina Tambets, Andres Metspalu, Urmas Kõljalg, Martin Zobel, Tõnu Viik, Ken Kalling, Toomas Asser, Marika Mikelsaar, Jaak Vilo, Jüri Allik, Jaanus Harro and Mihhail Lotman.

Each science story is linked to an event in the Tartu 2024 programme that can be visited during the year.

The exhibition is organised by the Estonian Research Council and co-funded by the European Union.