Trying to find more variety and increase popular appeal in processes

Trying to find more variety and increase popular appeal in processes

Author: Riina Linna – The Museum of Technology, Finland

Techland is a new permanent exhibition in the Museum of Technology (Helsinki, Finland). Exhibition highlights the role of technology, industry and innovation during the last 100+ years. Finnish industry is exceptionally strong in developing new and improving old processes. We quickly realized that an exhibition so heavy on processes requires multiple ways communicating them. In the presentation I intend to discuss how and why we chose the methods that we used.


  • Purification of clean water uses animation that visualizes water in the process at different stages. Done on a single 60” screen and combining interactive elements.
  • Manufacturing polyethylene in a dual reactor process in gif-animation.
  • Side streams of industrial processes in gif-animation showing the history and development of an oil refinery area.


  • Waste water purification process chart in relatively traditional style but located in the visitor toilets.
  • Flash smelting process using the original patent drawing as a visual starting point.


  • Pictures of stages of mining compiled into a video projected into a “rock wall” in mining milieu.
  • Steel manufacturing process divided on five tablet sized screens with accompanying short explanations.
  • Recycling metal presented alongside of a crushed Fiat 127.

Display case

  • Metal supply chain is told with a combination of a flow chart and objects and specimens in a round display case.

All forms of visualization adhered to the visual and architectural standards of the exhibition. Looking attractive and a strong relationship to the real objects about the phenomena was stressed. Our overall aim in the exhibition is to inspire visitors of all ages to consider their relationship with technology. Emphasis was on atmosphere and experiences. To succeed in our general goals for the exhibition we didn’t have to ditch processes or even process charts. But we did have to think of visualizations so that overall impression is not repetitive, full of charts and big words.

The author has not yet submitted a copy of the full paper.

Presentation type: Show, tell and talk
Theme: Stories
Area of interest: Teaching science communication