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Millions of Stars at Denver Planetarium


The robustness, reliability and low cost of ownership associated with projectiondesign technology have been underlined by an installation in the spectacular Gates Planetarium at the Denver Museum of Nature and Science.

Six of the Norwegian manufacturer’s F32 series DLP projectors have been installed as part of a major technology upgrade of the Planetarium, which holds 125 people and is used to screen a range of immersive films, some produced at the Museum itself. 

Tim Nicholson, Exhibit Technology Manager and Senior System Developer at the Denver Museum of Nature and Science, explains: “Our previous system was an 11-projector setup which proved unreliable and had an extremely high cost of ownership.  The six F32 projectors have been blended together by our system integrator to form a seamless full-dome display of 360º by 160º, at a high resolution of 3,300 by 3,300 pixels.

“In the four years since we upgraded, the projectors have been used for nearly 20,000 presentations and have given us 99.99% up time. Their reliability has been outstanding.”

Immersive display specialist Global Immersion designed and integrated the multi-channel projection system as part of their proprietary Fidelity Bright™ digital theatre solution which included the Planetarium’s custom media management and playback systems, while the Museum’s in-house team designed and installed other areas of the technology upgrade themselves including multi-channel audio and lighting control systems..

“As well as immersive movie content that resides on in-house servers, the Planetarium also hosts live concerts ‘under the stars’ and special events such as viewings of Earth from space using real-time navigation from SCISS’ Uniview,” explains Nicholson. “So one special requirement we had was a seamless way to switch between three different ‘clusters’ of media servers – one for day-to-day operations, and two development clusters for special events.”

Alan Caskey, director for the Americas at Global Immersion adds: “This reference site marks one of many projects where we have integrated projectiondesign technology. The high reliability and performance characteristics of these projectors provide an attractive commercial grade solution for both us and our clients. Our own expertise in working with and servicing these complex and demanding display solutions works hand in hand with the significant advantages that the projectiondesign product range offers.”

Neil Wittering, Marketing Director, projectiondesign, concludes: “Immersive environments such as the Gates Planetarium make very high demands of projectors in terms of image quality, reliability and consistency, not just between the multiple projectors at any given time, but also over time. We are delighted that the Museum has been able to lower its operating costs thanks to our F32 projectors, and view projects of this kind as validating our no-compromise approach to designing high-performance products for serious, commercial applications.”

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