The "Einsteinturm" is the first important building designed by the famous
architect Erich Mendelsohn. It was planned and built in the years 1919 to
1924, the main part was finished in 1921. One may argue wether it makes
sense to define the building in terms of architectual style. The tower
is often called the "main example for architectual expressionism". Its general
design is very harmonic, however, and Mendelsohn's own perception oppose was
different. In this aspect, everybody has to find his own answer.
Unusual are also the other paramterers of the building's past: The Einstein
tower is a functional building, a solar observatory
and until the second World War the most prominent research institution of
that kind in Europe. The tower is therefore also an example for the very
few connections between science and art, as Mendelsohn fulfilled the
conditions for the scientific use as well as his own concepts of form.
Due to Mendelsohn's interest in Einstein's work, some the spririt of the
exciting developments in modern physics is also captured in the building.
A substantial overhaul of the Einstein Tower started in November 1997.
The re-opening ceremony took place on July 1, 1999.
More pictures and sketches of the
Einstein Tower are in the
Der Einstein Tower is part of the
Astrophysikalisches Institut Potsdam
based in the Babelsberg Observatory today; the area on Telegraph
Hill (Telegrafenberg) is used by
and other institutes of climate and polar research.
The science park Albert Einstein is open for visitors during
the day. Guests might have to check in at the entrance of the area.
The Einstein Tower has been newly renovated between November 1997 and July 1999.
Visiting the building from the outside is possible at all times during the
day and highly recommended. Please understand that a visit of the inside
is not possible in general because the observatory is used for solar
research. Furthermore, the optical intruments are very sensitive against
dust and humidity due to the open construction of the telescope inside
the building. However, you can visit part of the inside of the building,
i.e. the ground floor and the main room, only during guided tours organized
"Wilhelm Foerster" e. V.
Telefon (0331) 29 17 41
Fax (0331) 29 36 83
through the tower, combined with an introductory lecture, are normally
in German only. Please understand that the number of participants needs
to be limited. The building was constructed for research and does not
offer much space for visitors. Pre-registration is
A brochure about the renovation of the Einstein Tower
can be purchased for EUR 3.75. The income will go into
the maintenance of the tower.
The Great Refractor,
to the north of the Einstein Tower,
was overhauled in Jena and was re-inaugurated on May 31, 2006. It is now open to the
public as a scientific and technical monument including observing nights.
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