The Before Photonics display is located in a cabinet on the first floor of the Parnell Building outside a series of Laser and Photonic research laboratories. To reach the Before Photonics display from the museum, walk away from the main entrance along the corridor next to the museum. At the end of the corridor there are stairs that lead down to the first floor. When you exit the stairs, continue straight ahead down the hallway. The display is located at the beginning of this hallway on the left hand side.

Welcome to the University of Queensland Physics Museum Before Photonics Audio Tour. This tour will take you through a tour of nine instruments that were used to measure, examine, compare or identify light. Eight of these objects were designed before the concepts of photons and the photoelectric effect were developed. All these instruments require the user to take manual measurements, using the human eye as detector.  One other, the photocell camera, is an example of a very early application of the photoelectric effect. Today, optical instruments all use photon detectors, which makes them more sensitive, more precise and easier to use.

 The links below will take you through the items on display, from the Boys’ Radiomicrometer to the various Max Kohl photometers. Each webpage contains a transcript of the audio guide, along with links to further related material.

Start the tour