Mississauga, Ontario Canada – 19 June 2014 – Visualization expert Barco is making history in Canada with the Vancouver Aquarium, collaborating on the development of “Connections 360,” a fully immersive, 360-degree, high-definition water experience powered by seven large-venue Barco projectors.When the Vancouver Aquarium embarked upon a six-year, $100 million transformation of the marine science center, it set its sights on creating a one-of-a-kind visual spectacular to welcome visitors with a brand new experience. The result: “Connections 360,” a continuous circle of imagery depicting a changing kaleidoscope of aquatic imagery to reinforce docent storytelling, from the cycle of a rain drop, to British Columbia’s most scenic freshwater and marine locations, to sea life rescue and rehabilitation efforts.
An immersive eco-experience
Showcased in the Teck Connections Gallery, the exhibit engages guests in a powerful Canadian aquascape displayed on a wraparound screen elevated high above visitors, immersing them in a lifelike “one with nature” experience. The exhibit is the first of its kind in Canada, and the jewel in the crown of the center’s expansion.
“The stunning addition of a 360-degree screen significantly elevates our ability to share engaging stories with our visitors; we’re extremely pleased with the results of the Barco technology, which has exceeded our expectations for enhancing the sheer visual impact of the scenery,” said Dr. John Nightingale, CEO of Vancouver Aquarium. “By integrating the high-quality screen imagery into our exhibit, we can now present a rich visual and emotional experience that amazes and engages our guests.”
Precision design and flexibility ensure consistent brilliance
The exhibit features a 185+-foot-wide screen powered by 140,000 lumens of projection power from seven Barco HDX-W20 FLEX large-venue projectors supplied by Barco distributor SC Media. Delivering 6.5 megapixel resolution imagery, every surface is digitally warped pixel-by-pixel to match the contour of each screen.
The HDX-W20 projectors not only provide the brightest images to ensure crisp, brilliant colors and contrast, but also easily adapt to changing lighting conditions via their “light-on-demand” capability. Operators can even fine tune the light output of each projector in selectable or automated lumen increments as needed to ensure the best, most consistent image across the entire screen area, which also ensure the most efficient and cost-effective operation.
Entertainment at the highest level
“We are honored to partner with the Vancouver Aquarium and applaud its commitment to offering visitors the pinnacle of immersive visualization quality with their ‘Connections 360’ water experience,” comments Tim Sinnaeve, Managing Director for Barco Canada. “When we illustrated the superior impact that could be achieved with our high-lumens projectors, they immediately realized how the added value would play a huge role in establishing the Aquarium as must-see entertainment venue.”
SC Media Canada, Barco’s local distributor played a key role in the design and proof of concept for the “Connections 360” exhibit. “We are pleased to be a partner in this exciting new exhibition and to provide the local support and service to ensure its continued success,” states Jean Louis Blanchard, Senior Vice President of Sales and Marketing at SC Media Canada.