Monday, January 29, 2007

Karlskrona Revisited

On the last day of November, my supervisor surprised me by announcing that he would be having a meeting with all of his students together in Karlskrona. The main campus of BTH is located there, and it is about 25km east of Ronneby. The meeting was more a "getting to know you" type rather than anything technical, although it lasted longer than it was meant to. It finished around 3:45pm. Here is a view of the main buildings of Campus Gräsvik at approximately that time. It is after sunset. A tradeoff for travelling all the way to Karlskrona was that we could all have the rest of the afternoon off to see some of the sights of the town. Karlskrona has a tremendous naval history. We learned that when we went to the Marinmuseum (Marine Museum). It's a two-storey building situated on the coast of a small island named Stumholmen, in the east part of Karlskrona. The building was only opened in 1997, so it's very modern. The following are some of the photos I took inside the museum. I apologise that some are very dark, mainly due to it being after sunset even before we arrived.
Here is an old hand-drawn map of the Swedish coast.
This image depicts some boat models. And this one is a very intricate cross-section of a ship. This image may be difficult to make out, but it shows a lot of different weapons (rifles, mainly) that were used on the ships.
Indeed a lot of the exhibits concern defence and warfare. This exhibit was a model of a battle between Sweden and Russia.
At the far end of the museum, there is a large atrium with many large ornate carvings mounted on the transparent walls. These are what were attached to the front of Swedish ships of the past. Four of them are shown in the image below.
A lot of the upper floor exhibits are dedicated to submarines. This is a view inside the walk-through model. Submarines have such confined spaces. I recall bashing my head a couple of times as I walked through under some of the archways. This is another ship model on the upper floor, just near the front entrance.

I was lucky enough to pop into the shop and grab a few souvenirs as Xmas presents for my family. Another drawcard of the museum is that there is actually a third storey, located below the ground floor. Here, you can look out of the windows and see the water and sea floor, while learning about how scientists do research below the waves on small information panels, thankfully most of which are in Swedish and English.

It was then time for the museum to close, and for us to depart. Here is a view of the front entrance of the museum. You may just be able to make out the golden star lights in the windows. Tomorrow was the first of December, and the beginning of the Xmas lights season. But, in keeping with the Swedish tradition of starting things on the evening beforehand, the Xmas lights were being turned on on November 30th.

On our way to Taverna Santorini for dinner (the same place G had his farewell dinner), I managed to take these photos of the Xmas lights of Karlskrona.

They certainly provide a welcome type of escape from the long-lasting darkness at this time of year.