Fire, the playful exhibition at Paris Cité des Sciences

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Published by My B. · Photos by My B. · Published on 7 December 2018 at 18h55
After the “Cold” exhibition, Paris Cité des Sciences asks about fire, through an exhibition to be discovered from April 10, 2018 to January 6, 2019. What is fire? Since when men have been using it? Why can’t we always control it? All these questions are about to be answered thanks to this compelling and playful exhibition available for children from 9 years old.

Affected itself by a fire in August 2015, Paris Cité des Sciences has decided to raise awareness thanks to a very compelling exhibition as it masters. Displayed at the same time as the “Cold” exhibition, from April 10, 2018 to January 6, 2019, the “Fire” exhibition will answer many questions and anxieties.

Available for children from 9 years old, this exhibition brings together audio-visual installations, multimedia devices, interactive experiments as well as many items including a smoke room to deconstruct received ideas.

Universcience president Bruno Maquart explains: “The exhibition, thought up following the fire that hit us in the summer 2015, is a way for us to control fire and thank, in doing so, those who dedicate their lives fighting it. This is why we are particularly proud that the Paris Fire Brigade has agreed to be the scientific sponsor of this unique and never-seen-before exhibition.”

Evolving around three parts, the exhibition reveals men’s behaviors facing a fire:

  • Controlling fire:
    How did men discover fire? How did they harness it? In this first part, Paris Cité des sciences offers us to relive the greatest moments of history and what fire brought to men’s life.

    We also learn that the first marks of fire uses in men’s lives date back from 400,000 years ago. Then, it often represented a vital contribution to humanity, in the daily life: using light, cooking, heating, as well as communicating (think smoke signals) and transforming!

  • Understanding fire:
    What is fire? Why is combustion research conducted? What are searching researchers? Scientifically speaking, fire corresponds to a chemical reaction of redox, called “combustion” that needs three elements (combustible, combustive and activation energy). If, for a long time, men limited themselves to use fire for light, cooking and communicating and turning the heat into a driving force, men led to a “thermo-industrial” society.

    For 3 centuries, men have been using fire in many fields, but not without consequences. High rates of carbon dioxide in the air, fine particles, combustible materials stock depletion, scientists do everything they can to reduce the impact of human activities on the planet Earth.

  • Fighting fires:
    The 3rd part of the exhibition focuses on the question about fires under all their angles. To present the danger of fires well, the Cité de la Sciences presents the biggest fires that marked history, and the differences between wildfires and urban interface fires. We don’t know it, but some wildfires are actually good ecosystems!

    In this section, firemen give us their pieces of advice to act in case of a fire, and they tell us how they fight differently against fires, according to their origin, their behavior… Then, we discover the steps of a postfire investigation to learn more and improve the fight against fires. Kids can even put on the shoes of a firefighter and discover the often-trying action conditions.

The visit of this exhibition is also the occasion to rediscover the permanent exhibitions of the Cité des Sciences, including in the entrance fees, as well as the exhibition dedicated to cold (an element as needed as dangerous), running until September 16, 2018.

Practical information

Dates and Opening Time
From 10 April 2018 to 6 January 2019



    30 Avenue Corentin Cariou
    75019 Paris 19


    Métro : ligne 7, station Porte de la Villette.
    Bus : lignes 139, 150, 152, station Porte de la Villette.
    Tramway :T3b, station Porte de la Villette.

    - 2 ans, chômeurs, handicapés: Free
    -25 ans, +65 ans, familles nombreuses: €9
    tarif normal: €12

    Recommended age
    From 9 years old

    Average duration
    2 h

    Official website

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