Technology in fiction and reality

23rd May 2008 at 01:00
As Dan Dare harnessed gadget-based technology to battle with the power-hungry Mekon, Britain was harnessing gadgetry in the real world to do battle with post-war depression

As Dan Dare harnessed gadget-based technology to battle with the power-hungry Mekon, Britain was harnessing gadgetry in the real world to do battle with post-war depression.

A new, free exhibition at the Science Museum in London looks at the various parallels between the birth in 1950 of futuristic pilot Dan Dare, hero of the Eagle comic, and the advances in British technology during the same period.

British inventions of that era included radar, penicillin and the jet engine. In the period following the Secoind World War, British manufacturers mass-produced televisions, radios and power tools.

Meanwhile, as Dan Dare's rocket fleet soared over Venus, the British army was developing a new line in hi-tech aeroplanes and nuclear weapons.

The exhibition juxtaposes these fictional and real technological advances, displaying original Eagle drawings alongside genuine post-war innovations. These include early tape recorders, washing machines and electric razors, as well as the anti-aircraft Bloodhound missile.

For further information about teachers' events, see the website: www.sciencemuseum.org.uk.

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