Collection of scientific instruments UNIL-EPFL

Available soon


The UNIL and EPFL collection of scientific instruments includes a corpus of more than a thousand objects in fields as varied as solid body mechanics, optics, astronomy, radioactivity and nuclear physics. Built up over the centuries as a result of the teaching and research carried out at the Académie and University of Lausanne (UNIL), as well as later at the École polytechnique fédérale de Lausanne (EPFL), the collection represents an exceptional testimony to the history and development of scientific instruments since the 18th century.

In 2003, following the transfer of the Department of Physics from the UNIL to the EPFL, Professor Jean-François Loude undertook the enormous task of identification, description and preservation of this heritage. The collection has since been enriched by donations and purchases and a selection of instruments, accompanied by explanatory labels, is on display in the Cubotron building. The ownership of the objects is shared between the UNIL and the EPFL, which jointly manage and promote them.

Each object was photographed, measured and dated. The complete and illustrated inventory will soon be available on this site. In the meantime, a page presenting the collection is already available on the EPFL website.


Ampèremètre de tableau, avec support (0,5 A – 5 A)
Italy, first third of the 20th century
Quartz piézoélectrique de J. et P. Curie
France, late 19th - early 20th century