Through Ages, Cultures, Concepts: Instruments in Collections, Books, Archives

The INAF (National Institute for Astrophysics Osservatorio Astronomico di Palermo and Servizi Biblioteche, Musei e Terza Missione) and the University of Palermo, Department of Physics and Chemistry, are pleased to host the annual symposium of the Scientific Instrument Commission in this historic Sicilian city. Two major scientific discoveries were made in Palermo in the last centuries: the first asteroid, Ceres (now classified as a dwarf planet), discovered by Giuseppe Piazzi in 1801 at the Observatory, and the first artificially produced chemical element, technetium, discovered by Emilio Segrè and Carlo Perrier in 1937 at the Physics Institute of the University. These two important achievements prove the existence of a long scientific tradition, whose heritage is still preserved in many institutions, where various historical scientific collections remain on display. Located at the heart of Mediterranean trade routes, Palermo has been a melting pot of different cultures for centuries: this has inspired the theme of SIC 2023, which includes a wide spectrum of possible topics. The University of Palermo offers a degree in Conservation and Restoration of Cultural Heritage and some C&R projects are currently ongoing at the Museo della Specola, which is situated inside the Astronomical Observatory. Finally, the 60th anniversary of the famous movie “The Leopard”, partly shot in Palermo, with an accurate reconstruction of the private observatory of the protagonist, made with instruments which are today on display at the Museo della Specola, provides one more opportunity for interdisciplinary approaches.
We sincerely thank the museums and collections of the SiMuA (Sistema Museale di Ateneo) that will be visited by the SIC participants (Museo della Specola, Museo dei Motori e dei Meccanismi, Collezione storica degli strumenti di Fisica).


Scientific Organizing Committee

SIC Board: Roland Wittje (Indian Institute for Science and Technology), Tacye Phillipson (National Museums of Scotland), Louise Devoy (Royal Observatory of Greenwich); local host: Ileana Chinnici (lNAF Osservatorio Astronomico di Palermo); co-organizers: Antonella Gasperini (INAF Servizio Musei Biblioteche e Archivi), Aurelio Agliolo Gallitto e Giuseppe Lazzara (University of Palermo)

Local Organizing Committee

Laura Daricello, Maria Rosalia Carotenuto, Manuela Coniglio, Maria Rita Caruso, Giulia D’Agostino, Flavio Morale, Maria Luisa Tuscano, Salvatore Speziale.

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