Immersive room in Nausicaa, France


Synopsis: Nausicaá
Design: Pixel n’Pepper
Artistic direction: Nathanaëlle PICOT
Technical direction: Gaël PICQUET
Audiovisual integration: Videlio

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Nausicaá unveils a new immersive room based on Modulo Pi media servers

Located in Boulogne-sur-Mer, France, Nausicaá National Sea Center has been taking visitors on a journey through the seascape since 1991. As part of its expansion, Europe’s largest public aquarium now offers a new immersive space to raise public awareness of the effects of global warming. Entirely made in 3D by the agency Pixel n’Pepper, the film “Into the eye of climate” comes to life in an immersive room relying on 22 x video-projectors, and 5 x Modulo Player media servers by Modulo Pi.

Both an aquarium and a marine science center, Nausicaá has been welcoming more than 15 million visitors since its creation in 1991. As part of its extension, a new space was designed to project visitors “Into the eye of climate”, a 360° immersive experience aimed at raising awareness of global warming and its issues.

To handle this project, the National Sea Center of Boulogne-sur-Mer appointed Pixel n’Pepper. The agency oversaw the technical and economic feasibility study and was entrusted with the artistic and technical development of the very first immersive room dedicated to climate change and its issues.

In a square room measuring 11x11m, the walls and the floor were used to create a successful immersive experience. Gaël Picquet, Technical Director at Pixel n’Pepper, explains: “As visitors are close to the walls, we first had to determine the height of the image based on the distance of the audience, and its field of vision. From this data, the image height was set at 7m. The audience being close to the image projected, we also needed to have a high definition, and therefore a pixel as small as possible. We opted for a 3mm pixel size, both on the walls and on the floor. Finally, the minimum brightness wanted was 250 lux to be able to work precisely on contrasts and colors.”

A total of 22 x EB-L1075U Epson video-projectors was installed to project on the floor and the four walls. The 360° video mapping relies on the Modulo Player media server solution by Modulo Pi, with 4 x Modulo Player PRO-4, et 1 x Modulo Player PRO-6.

To offer a comprehensive immersive experience, particular attention was paid to audio. A multi-channel system was installed with 8 x ID 24i speakers, 4 x ID 110 subs, and 2 x NXAMP 4×4 amplifiers by Nexo.

Audio and video playback is ensured by Modulo Player, which also handles show control: “A video and audio player embedding all show control functionalities required for this type of permanent installation is of real interest both for technical and budgetary reasons” says Gaël Picquet. “The player and show control aspects are inextricably linked and working with Modulo Player allowed streamlining the whole system.”

Using the UI Designer included in Modulo Player, custom panels were created for Nausicaá’s operation and maintenance teams. “The custom user panels were of great value for all operational aspects” notes Gaël Picquet.

As of July 25, 2020, visitors of Nausicaá can enter “Into the eye of climate” and live an immersive experience at the heart of climate change and its devastating effects.
Entirely produced in 3D, the film was directed by Nathanaëlle Picot of Pixel n’Pepper and her team.
“Immersive rooms are flourishing in the sector of museography” comments Gaël Picquet. “The real interest is and will remain the quality of the content.”

Through this unprecedented immersive experience, Nausicaá hopes to move the audience and raise their awareness of the solutions and best practices to curb global warming.