Former WWII bunker hosts world's first 10K 3D planetarium
As part of a refurbishment at the planetarium at La Coupole, a former World War Two bunker in northern France that's now a museum, RSA Cosmos has installed a dozen 4K projectors to create what's billed as the world's first 10K 3D planetarium.
La Coupole is a huge bunker complex near Saint Omer in the Pas-de-Calais district that was built by Nazi forces to launch V-2 rockets aimed at London and southern England during WWII. It was heavily bombed by Allied forces and subsequently captured in September 1944. To prevent it being reused as a military base, Winston Churchill ordered it partially demolished. However, the huge complex was later used for the Apollo program, and then lay abandoned until it was transformed into a war museum in the late 1990s.
Now a new digital system has been installed at the planetarium in the museum, with RSA Cosmos challenged with enhancing the quality of the immersive 3D experience. The result is said to be the first in the world to offer 10K 3D visuals at the meridian. Visitors are promised "ultra-realistic, stunning images" thanks to a combination of the company's SkyExplorer 2021 software and 12 of Sony's VPL-GTZ380 4K projectors installed in a 15-m (49-ft) digital dome.
Each of the US$80,000 flagship SXRD laser projectors puts out 10,000 lumens and supports 100 percent of the DCI-P3 color gamut, is capable of scene-by-scene contrast adjustment, has built-in technology to reduce motion blur, and is also able to enhance the color and contrast of individual objects within the thrown image for improved clarity.
"The goal of this modernization project was to achieve an image quality we no longer had," said La Coupole's planetarium manager, Nicolas Fiolet. "Thanks to the Sony projectors we obtain a magnificent sky, splendid colors and great contrasts."
The project also saw RSA Cosmos upgrading the lighting and installing new seating, with each armrest featuring a control panel that caters for audience interaction, even allowing participants to take control of the camera in thrown simulations for a more dynamic experience.
The updated La Coupole planetarium is open to visitors now. The video below has more.
Source: RSA Cosmos