A critical evaluation of the new Hall of Astronomy of the University of Mexico Science Museum
On December 2004, the newly designed astronomy hall at Universum, the science museum of the Universidad Nacional Autonoma de Mexico, was opened to the public. It contains disp lays presented in several sections: (l) Sun, stars, and interstellar matter, (2) clusters, galax ies, and the Universe as a whole, and (3) tools of astronomers. The main concepts developed were the description of each cosmic component and, most importantly, the idea that all components, including the Universe, are undergoing continuous evolution. A set of additional displays rounds off the exhibit: a representation of the vastness of space, a time line from the Big Bang to the present epoch, and some video clips from local astronomers. There is also a section on the history of astronomy. This paper presents the results of an evaluation of the impact of the different elements of this exhib it on visitors.