Science City, Kolkata, a constituent unit of the National Council of Science Museums, has added a new feather to its cap. The Fulldome3D Digital Theatre which was recently inaugurated by Dr. Mahesh Sharma, Union Minister of State for Culture (Independent Charge) and Minister of State for- Environment, Forest and Climate Change, Government of India, is expected to enhance the popularity of this science facility, located on the eastern fringes of the city.
The facility is the first of its kind in India. In tune with the technological advancement taking place around the world, the erstwhile Space Theatre in Science City has now switched over from a 2D celluloid based film projection system to a digital projection system as part of upgradation fully funded by the Ministry of Culture, Government of India. This upgradation came at a cost of Rs. 20 crore.
A. D. Choudhury, Director General, National Council of Science Museums, Ministry of Culture, Government of India, informed BE, “This system is capable of screening high resolution, full dome digital 2D and 3D content and Planetarium Shows by utilising six, high end, Christie Mirage projectors with an effective screen resolution of at least 28 million pixels, the product of a seamless blend on a completely new 23 degree tilted, 23-metre diameter Astro-Tec’s patented dome using Ulteria Seam technology which utilises a specialised seamless joining process. This upgraded facility will provide immersive experience and the viewers will feel as if they are being transported into the scenes that are being viewed and the objects in projection will appear close enough to touch.” He added, “I believe this facility will make Science City even more economically sustainable.”
Carl Zeiss AG, Germany was commissioned to renovate the Space Theatre. Zeiss is also responsible for the state-of-the-art LED dome lighting, surround sound system and ergonomically designed seating arrangements.
The theatre which has a seating capacity of 360 will regularly display 3D movies. According to Science City sources, tickets have been priced economically so as to make this facility largely accessible. Additional benefits are planned for group bookings. Students are to be given special benefits.
Established in 1997, the Space Theatre at Science City, one of its most popular attractions, was the first-of-its-kind facility in India that attracted 70,72,694 footfall during its operation for around two decades. Its revamped edition is also expected to woo large number of visitors.