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Deutsches Technikmuseum - Power engineering

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The Websites of the donation Stiftung Deutsches Technikmuseum Berlin at a glance:


The donation contains six locations:

Power engineering

There is no movement without power, no machine works without power. Power engineering objects are hence to be found - albeit often hidden - throughout the museum.

Foto: The steam engine from 1860 with ....

Steam engine from 1860

Steam engine and Diesel engine

However, the visitor can hardly miss the old steam engine right in the entrance building, driving a whole group of machine tools. It opens a new chapter in science history, not least because it marks the beginning of independent power engineering. The steam engine becomes an independent, non-stationary driving machine, the purpose of which is determined by the machine it drives.

The increasing diversification of industrial work is reflected by the objects. A Diesel engine, just a few steps further on, shows this clearly: it can be set into motion, but there is nothing to drive. 


Oscillating steam engine of the paddle steamer MARIE (1899)

Energy conversion and generation of energy

The trend is explained best by electrical engineering; its beginnings are initially on two tracks in the 2nd locomotive shed, until a more detailed exhibition becomes possible in the future main building (Technoversum). The current presentation deals with a number of aspects in the "power - heat - electricity" context with a view to historical and didactic aspects. Alternative methods of power generation currently under discussion are also integrated into the exhibition.

A door directly connects to the open air area of the museum where two historical windmills are visible from afar and demonstrate pre-industrial energy conversion. Even though they are highly sophisticated from the point of view of mechanics, they do constitute a striking contrast to industrial engineering: natural "wind" energy and craftsmanship characterise their design.

Photo: Windmill from 1820 in the museum park

Post mill in the museum park, 1820

Wind power in the museum park

The windmills in the museum park are in contrast to the modern solar panels: plain, grey panels convert sunlight to electrical energy, driving a fountain without any apparent movement or engine noise.

Further objects will be installed in the years to come, demonstrating old and modern uses for regenerative energy and showing approaches towards a reconciliation between nature and machines and pointing towards a way out of the ecological crisis.