Invitation to the press conference: Caves – Treasure vaults of Science

14. January 2022
On Tuesday, February 1, 2022, at 10.30 a.m., the NHM Vienna invites you to a press presentation of the new exhibition path.
To celebrate the International Year of Caves and Karst, the Natural History Museum Vienna is opening a new path through the museum's exhibition halls. Specially designated objects in the permanent exhibition illustrate the geological, zoological and cultural diversity in caves and the importance they have as sites of scientific "treasures".

On Tuesday, February 1, 2022, at 10.30 a.m.:
 
Location: Natural History Museum Vienna, Maria-Theresien-Platz, 1010 Vienna.
Admission: from 10.00 a.m.
Start: at 10.30 a.m.
 
Programme:
 
Demonstration of climbing down a cave – from the Upper Dome Hall
with Dipl.-Geogr. Pauline Oberender and Dr. Lukas Plan, scientific staff members of the karst and cave working group of the NHM Vienna
 
Welcome and introductory words
Dr. Katrin Vohland
, Director General and Scientific Director of the NHM Vienna
 
Why are caves treasure troves of science?
Dr. Lukas Plan
, scientist of the Karst and Caves Working Group, NHM Vienna
 
Scientific statements by
Dr. Nesrine Akkari
, scientist of the 3rd Zoology department, NHM Vienna
Dr. Karina Grömer, acting head of the Prehistoric department, NHM Vienna
Dr. Mathias Harzhauser, head of the department of Geology & Palaeontology, NHM Vienna
Dr. Luise Kruckenhauser, scientist of the Central Research Laboratories, NHM Vienna
 
Presentation of the new brochure "Caves - Treasure Chambers of Science
Dr. Andreas Kroh
, deputy scientific director and head of publishing, NHM Vienna
 
Afterwards: Tour of the path through the showrooms.
 

Caves – Treasure vaults of Science

Many people find shape-rich dripstone caves or glittering ice caves beautiful. But what makes them so valuable for science? Unlike the land surface, which is subject to constant changes, naturally formed caves can be extremely long-living. Traces of the past are sometimes preserved for millions of years.

We know a lot about ice-age large mammals like the cave bear or cave lion because they hibernated in caves or brought their prey there. Animals like the proteus and several arthropods are interesting because of their special adaptation to these extreme habitats. Caves were also very important for prehistoric people: they were protected places of retreat, but also places of worship. Much of our knowledge about human development is based on finds from caves.

Cavities in the rock allow minerals to grow or serve as a depositional space for sediments. Dripstones store information about the climate. They are valuable archives when it comes to comparing past climate changes with the current climate change. Areas built up of water-soluble rocks such as limestone are important drinking water reservoirs. These so-called karst areas host the most and the longest caves. Exploring them can help to ensure the quality of drinking water.

The International Year of Caves and Karst was declared by the International Union of Speleology (and extended from 2021 to 2022) with the aim of informing the general public more about the issues and the great value of caves for mankind.
The Karst and Caves Group at the NHM Vienna is part of the Geology & Palaeontology Department and is engaged in applied as well as basic research on a wide variety of scientific topics related to caves and karst, which will be presented as part of the thematic pathway as well as an extensive supporting programme at the museum this year.
 
The 2G rule applies at the press conference.
Please wear a mouth-nose protection at this event.

With the request to register at: presse@nhm-wien.ac.at
(c) Ágnes Berentés
(c) Mirjam Widmer
(c)Thomas_Exel
(c)Thomas Exel
(c) NHM Wien, Lukas Plan
(c) Thomas Exel
(c) NHM Wien, Lukas Plan
(c) NHM Wien
(c) NHM Wien, Christina Rittmannsperger
(c) NHM Wien, Christina Rittmannsperger
(c) NHM Wien, Christina Rittmannsperger
(c) NHM Wien, Christina Rittmannsperger
(c) NHM Wien, Christina Rittmannsperger
(c) NHM Wien, Christina Rittmannsperger
(c) NHM Wien, Christina Rittmannsperger
(c) NHM Wien, Christina Rittmannsperger
(c) NHM Wien, Christina Rittmannsperger
(c) NHM Wien, Christina Rittmannsperger
(c) NHM Wien, Christina Rittmannsperger
(c) Christina Rittmannsperger
(c) NHM Wien, Christina Rittmannsperger
(c) NHM Wien, Christina Rittmannsperger
(c) NHM Wien, Christina Rittmannsperger
(c) NHM Wien, Christina Rittmannsperger
(c) NHM Wien, Christina Rittmannsperger
(c) NHM Wien, Christina Rittmannsperger
(c) NHM Wien, Christina Rittmannsperger
(c) NHM Wien, Christina Rittmannsperger
(c) NHM Wien, Christina Rittmannsperger
  
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