Canada Science and Technology Museum

Canada Science and Technology Museum

Front entrance
Established 1967
Location Ottawa, Ontario, Canada
Coordinates 45°24′12″N 075°37′13″W / 45.40333°N 75.62028°W / 45.40333; -75.62028
Type Science museum
Collection size 252,784[1]
Visitors 347,917[1]
President Denise Amyot[1]

The Canada Science and Technology Museum (French: Musée des sciences et de la technologie du Canada) is located in Ottawa, Ontario, on St. Laurent Boulevard, to the south of the Queensway (Highway 417).


The National Museum of Science and Technology was established in 1967 as a Centennial project by the Canadian Government. It was the first museum to employ interactive exhibits. The role of the Museum is to help the public to understand the technological and scientific history of Canada and the ongoing relationships between science, technology and Canadian society.[2] The artifacts present the ongoing relationships between science, technology, and the transformation of Canadian society.


Helen Sawyer Hogg Observatory with telescope from Dominion Observatory
Lighthouse, originally from Cape Race, Newfoundland, 1856

The museum is controlled by the Canada Science and Technology Museum Corporation, a Crown corporation that reports to the Department of Canadian Heritage, which is responsible for preserving and protecting Canada's scientific and technical heritage. The Corporation has a staff of about 275 and is responsible for three museums:


The Canada Science and Technology Museum fulfils its mission through its collection, permanent, temporary and traveling exhibits, special events, school programs, workshops and demonstrations, publications, loans, conferences and lectures, expert advice, and joint action with other museums and organizations with similar goals and interests.

The subject areas covered by the collections and curatorial staff include: communications; domestic technology, energy, forestry, graphic arts, land transportation, marine transportation, mining, and physical sciences & space. The museum's collections include more than 40,000 artifacts, 60,000 pieces of trade literature and almost a million photographs. Its library is open to the public and the resources of the Reserve Collections may be used by researchers by prior arrangement.

Permanent exhibits include Innovation Canada about Canadian inventors and inventors, Connexions about the evolution of communications, Digital Networks, Canada in Space, the Locomotive Pavilion and an exhibit about canoes. Highlighted artifacts include the Canadian National Railways 6400 steam locomotive, ZEEP nuclear reactor from the Atomic Energy of Canada's laboratories at Chalk River, Ontario, the Tokamak de Varennes fusion reactor, Black Brant rocket and launcher, and Titanic model. Furthermore, there are exhibits highlighting research by other Canadian government scientific research organizations, and the Canadian Science and Engineering Hall of Fame.

The museum sits in Technology Park where visitors can also visit the Cape North (Nova Scotia) lighthouse which was first used at Cape Race, Newfoundland in 1856. The CN 6200 steam locomotive, a Convair Atlas rocket, an oil well pumpjack, and the Helen Sawyer Hogg Observatory with the 15 in (380 mm) refracting telescope originally from the Dominion Observatory.

Allow at least 2 hours for a visit. Exhibits are bilingual (French and English).

New location

In 2001, the museum began looking for a new location to move to, citing a lack of space and accessibility.[3] The desire for more scenic surroundings was also a factor, as the museum is currently surrounded mostly by warehouses and strip malls. Four locations are being considered: the western section of LeBreton Flats, on the Rockcliffe Parkway next to the Canada Aviation and Space Museum (both in Ottawa), in Jacques Cartier Park on Rue Laurier, and a site on Rue Montcalm (both in the neighbouring city of Gatineau).

In 2006, Conservative cabinet minister and MP for Pontiac (which includes the eastern tip of Gatineau) Lawrence Cannon put his support behind the Jacques Cartier Park option, indicating that it may likely be chosen.[4]

In September 2014, mould was discovered spreading from the building’s south wall during routine maintenance. The Museum is now closed until 2017 while the repairs are done.[5]

CMST Storage Facility

The Canada Science and Technology Museum's storage facility, which is located at 1867 St. Laurent Blvd, includes many of the CMST’s 45,500 objects, such as a prototype for the Bombardier Innovia ART 100, a driverless rail car (ca. 1982), an Iron Lung once used at the Ottawa Civic Hospital (ca. 1950), and the FIU-301, and the Ontario Provincial Police’s first Unmanned Aerial vehicle (2005-2007). The CMST storage facility was included amongst other architecturally interesting and historically significant buildings in Doors Open Ottawa, held June 2 and 3, 2012. [6]


The Museum is affiliated with: Canadian Museums Association (CMA), Canadian Heritage Information Network (CHIN), and Virtual Museum of Canada.

See also


  1. 1 2 3 2009-2010 annual report. Collection numbers are for the Canada Science and Technology Museums Corporation.
  2. The Canadian Encyclopedia
  3. Canada Science and Technology Museum - Official Press Release, 30 May 2002
  4. Ottawa Citizen, 15 April 2006
  6. Doors Open Ottawa
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