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Sony immerses visitors in particle physics at interactive exhibition

Duncan Proctor 19 January 2017
Sony immerses visitors in particle physics at interactive exhibition

Sony has entered a technical partnership with the National Museum of Science and Technology Leonardo da Vinci in Milan, to provide interactive multimedia installations for the “Extreme. In search of particles,” exhibition.

Sony’s 3LCD BrightEra VPL-FHZ57 laser projectors are being used to create visually immersive and engaging experiences for visitors and unlock some of the secrets behind particle physics research.

The particle physics exhibition is the first of this type in Italy and was produced in collaboration with CERN – the European Organisation for Nuclear Research – and INFN – the Italian National Institute of Nuclear Physics. The exhibition sheds light on what happens in the laboratories of two of the largest research centres for particle physics in the world.

Explaining particle physics to non-experts is complicated and requires clear, direct language delivered by suitable technology. Therefore, the museum needed a projection solution that was able to cover the exhibition area of about 350sqm, was easy to install and use, as well as versatile to ensure low maintenance costs over time.

The National Museum of Science and Technology turned to Sony, choosing the VPL-FHZ57, a model particularly suitable for museums thanks to its high-quality images, its wide range of installable lenses and its reduced operating costs. Due to its low-profile design, concealed wires, and its minimal noise, it can be integrated into any museum, whether for permanent or temporary exhibitions. The solution allows users to blend images from multiple projectors to create super-sized displays and even project natural, accurate images onto curved surfaces. The projector can be installed at any angle, even on its side or upside down.

The exhibition itinerary begins by presenting research methods relating to particle physics. Extra dimensions allows visitors to come into contact with a world in which the number of possible dimensions is greater than the four that we all know. Using projections from the VPL-FHZ57, visitors see their image gradually reflected before becoming lost and then redistributed to other points in the space in unrecognisable forms.

Dark matter is an interactive multimedia installation that uses Sony projectors to suggest how existence and the behaviour of that which is “seen” in the Universe are determined by something unseen, in other words dark matter. Thanks to the technology installed, visitors can shape the “matter” and see how it affects the galaxies projected above them.

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The use of Sony projectors, with their versatile installation options and low running costs, has made the installations accessible to a wider audience. The technical support delivered by Sony enabled the museum to present complex concepts like dark matter and extra dimensions in an interactive way.

“For each exhibition project, the museum researches and creates new multimedia installations capable of transferring a variety of content into original, engaging experiences for visitors of all ages,” said Barbara Soresina, head of project management at the National Museum of Science and Technology. ” The installation of the ‘Extreme. In search of particles’ exhibition was created with the best multimedia production and software programming companies in Italy.

“To enhance this high-quality creative work with hardware, we turned to Sony as its B2B laser projectors offer the best performance but at the same time also adapt to non-standard projection spaces and requirements. The Sony staff were both creative and professional, and collaborated closely with the museum designers to choose the right equipment for the installation, including the VPL-FHZ57 projector and a range of suitable lenses.. In the last few years, the Museum has formed technical partnerships aimed at enriching new exhibitions and, more generally, all spaces with cutting-edge technology and beautiful yet functional decor.”

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