NEC Display Solutions Client Installation Leisure and Museums

HALTIA FINNISH NATURE CENTRE

CREATING A LIFELIKE VISUAL EXPERIENCE FOR VISITORS

Finland is a country of forests and nature. To showcase this aspect of the country, the State, together with cities, municipalities and businesses in the Helsinki Metropolitan Area decided to build an exhibition centre where children and adults alike, from cities and abroad, could have a great and realistic impression of the Finnish nature.

Haltia Nature Centre is a new exhibition centre, solely using digital exhibition technology. NEC was chosen to build the stunning display solutions that create a life like visual experience for visitors.

The Challenge

Finland is a long country, more than one thousand kilometres from south to north. At that distance climate and nature change dramatically and Haltia is a place to show the diverse nature Finland has to offer. The starting requirement for the whole Haltia project was to be completely digital. That is the only way to create the realistic scenes all over the country – not to mention the dramatic differences between summer and winter.

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“We are talking about experience technology,” explained Mr. Petri Ryöppy, exhibition manager of Haltia. He is a gold smith by training but has never worked a day in this profession. Instead he has been working for ten years at the technology of Heureka, the Finnish Science Centre and Kiasma, the number one contemporary art museum in Finland. In between helped organise the technology exhibition for Finland’s pavilion at the World Expo Shanghai. He is a kind of link between technology and art and knows what to require from technology.

“We have several simultaneous exhibition areas in Haltia and we travel from south to north and summer to winter in several minutes,” continued Ryöppy. “Actually we have five seasons here. Winter is so different in the autumn and in the spring that we decided to have two versions of winter. Everything in the exhibitions is made digitally. When we shut down the computers, there is nothing – just the walls.”

The biggest challenge according to Petri was the large panorama in the main exhibition hall. It is a super extra-wide movie screen made with four wide format NEC PH1000U projectors. The moving image stretches some twenty meters across the round wall of the exhibition hall. Four projectors show the movie recorded with four full-HD video cameras. Everything is completely synchronised and all the four images blend together smoothly, creating an unbelievable window to varying views of Finnish nature.

In the same hall there is interactive map of Finland on the floor, measuring nearly 10 metres. It was created with three NEC projectors and eleven monitors. When a person steps on the map, three sensors detect the movement and fifteen computers calculate changes on the map and views on the monitors accordingly. Somebody might talk about high-tech but Ryöppy regards it almost as routine and these two installations are a prime example of that.

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The NEC Solution

There were many technological requirements but they had to be delivered within a budget. The expenses to build the whole exhibition were limited to 1.2 million Euros, out of which 400,000 Euros was available for AV-technology. Quality was the first issue. Not only the quality of images but also technical quality of the display solutions. All the projectors and monitors are on for most of the time. Also location and position for some of the equipment was unusual. Projectors creating the map are pointing straight down from the ceiling, others are placed at steep angles. Some monitors are located inside walls or behind a glass floor with limited air circulation. Some monitors also point straight up or down. The starting point for the acquisition in 2013 was a bidding among relevant suppliers. Price had a weight of 50 per cent, while suitability, warranty and lifetime together accounted for 25 per cent and lifetime environmental effects made up 25 per cent of the consideration. All the technological peculiarities of the applications were obviously communicated to all the vendors.

“First we had to judge what equipment we could not live without,” explained Ryöppy. “The budget was the limiting factor, but NEC came to meet us in the middle with, for instance, the powerful NEC PH1000U projectors. Only the high efficiency projectors made the large panorama possible. The quality would have been much lower with anything else.”

“The second thing we did was a bidding for sponsoring. All the vendors interested in sponsoring us were allowed to bid. There were several companies interested in sponsoring the visual technology so we held a separate bid for that. All the main sponsors have exclusive rights for their own main area.”

“At the end, the result was clear,” concluded Ryöppy. “One AV-supplier was chosen and the winner was clearly NEC Display Solutions. After the choice the designers were able to stretch maximum advantages of all the individual components and the result is remarkable. Haltia is only a stone’s throw away from Helsinki but in the middle of beautiful nature scenery.”

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The Result

Haltia Nature Centre was built from scratch between 2012 and 2013. The centre needed the latest AV technology in order to create stunning display solutions for visitors. NEC Display Solutions met the customer the first time 2011. Thanks to NEC wide product portfolio we could offer different display solutions: large format displays, desktop projectors, installation projectors and different touch solutions.

“Come and see for yourself what NEC Display Solutions are able to do to the Finnish nature.”,ended Ryöppy.

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