Visitors flocking to the Information & Communications Pavilion at Expo 2010 Shanghai China get a taste of cutting-edge information and communication technologies (ICT) to come when they tour the attraction presented by China Mobile and China Telecom. Contracted by long-time client, BRC Imagination Arts, Electrosonic designed and installed the audio, video and control systems featuring multiple, large-scale projection systems; High Definition displays, customized show control and multi-channel audio playback systems. Renowned for its award-winning approach to emotional design and production BRC was the creator and producer for the world’s first Multi-Dimensional Interactive Network pavilion. Allowing visitors to move through a high capacity attraction and personally engage one-on-one with the shows and exhibits, bringing mass customization to visitor’s experience.
As soon as visitors enter the pavilion they pick up their ICT Mobile Device, a futuristic, handheld, personal communications device that accompanies them on their interactive journey through the attraction. Electrosonic provided the 802.11 wireless network for the ICT Mobile Device which enables visitors to interact with the pavilion’s show/exhibition elements, displaying video and a host of other interactive capabilities. The ICT Mobile Devices were designed by BRC Imagination Arts and provided by Linkon; a Chinese technology company.
“We’re always doing new custom applications that are very challenging,” says Electrosonic senior project manager Thursby Pierce. “Our Medialon show-control master controller sends cues via the wireless network to allow the ICT-equipped visitors to follow in sync with all the shows. Show control knows where each visitor and their ICT Mobile Device are at any given time and, based on the show in that part of the pavilion, plays synchronous content that relates to that particular experience.”
Earlier, visitors waiting outside in the Dream Garden were treated to a preview of the pavilion displayed on 13 Sunbrite weather-resistant 42-inch LCD monitors with audio support from a complement of JBL speakers.
Once they enter the Information & Communications Pavilion’s Welcome Lobby they are issued their ICT Mobile Device, log onto the network, create their own personal Dream Profile via the touch-screen on their device and watch welcome videos on four 42-inch clustered Panasonic LCD monitors facing out in all directions.
Then they proceed to the “Progress Begins as a Dream” pre-show interactive experience where five Christie DSP+6K-M projectors display edge-blended animated content documenting the history of communications in China on a 68-foot curved screen while changing colored lights coordinate with the animation in the interactive space. Electrosonic also provided the full multitrack surround system.
Visitors settle into the “Dream Big” Multi-Dimensional Interactive Network Theater for the main show on an IMAX-style Stewart Film Screen, measuring 71×38 feet with a slight curve, and on 32 panels that form an immersive media canopy arcing over the audience. Four Christie HD10K-M projectors deliver the edge-blended imagery in horizontal and vertical quadrants to the big screen. Four additional projectors display supporting images in multiple window-type frames on the canopy; they also warp and morph some content onto the big screen.
Electrosonic supplied the multitrack surround system for the “Dream Big” Theater experience and furnished tactile transducers that enable audience members to feel the low-frequency sounds through their seats.
After the main show visitors can play the “Dream Lantern Collection Game” using their ICT Mobile Device to interact with the post show exhibitions using RFID technologies. Visitors can collect dreams, win prizes and learn more about future information and communication technologies (ICT). They can also watch a series of post-show videos highlighting the future of ICT on a pair of 65-inch Panasonic plasma screens and on four 42-inch Panasonic plasmas screens located around the “One Connected World” exhibition hall.
Visitors return their ICT Mobile Device as they exit the pavilion. When they’re back home visitors can retrieve their collected dreams, virtual prizes and connect with other dreamers by logging onto the Information and Communications Pavilions social network website customized by the choices the visitors made during their experience at the pavilion.
Multiple control rooms, featuring Extron JMP9600 and MMP9500 video playback servers, are located throughout the facility; the majority of show systems are concentrated in the primary Show Equipment Room. Electrosonic also equipped a pair of carts with high-resolution document cameras which are rolled out for future information and communication technology product demonstrations. Electrosonic associate project manager Matt Sweeney and audio engineer and tech lead Phil Shaw remain onsite to supervise the Chinese crew; Electrosonic is contracted to perform the strike for the pavilion at the conclusion of the Expo.
Electrosonic Design Consulting provided guidance to the exhibit designers on AV equipment selections, projection geometry, facility impact, and budgeting. The team starts by responding to the creative drawings provided by the designers and identifying equipment that meets the creative intent. A number of projection studies were produced for the venue that demonstrated proof of concept and allowed them to verify the equipment selections. Electrosonic Design Consulting also create facility impact drawings, which provide cable, electrical power and heating/cooling requirements to the project’s engineers so they can design the infrastructure that allows all of the AV equipment to operate properly. The decisions from these initial consultations set the groundwork for how the overall systems would operate. Each project was turned over to the Electrosonic Engineering Department for further refinement, fabrication and installation.
From the celebrated Expo67 in Montreal to the last major Expo in 2005 in Aichi, Japan, Electrosonic has an extensive credit roster of international expos stretching from Brisbane and Osaka to New Orleans and Lisbon. Electrosonic’s participation in Expo 2010 Shanghai now pushes the number of projects the company has completed for these fairs to over 50.
Electrosonic’s Steve Calver and Thursby Pierce served as project mangers for the pavilion with Dan Laspa onsite project manager, Dennis Rambo site supervisor and Nir Elnekave projectionist. Nancy Liu was regional sales director and Benjamin Lein account executive.