Developing a World-Class, State-of-the-Art Projection System for a Brand-New Arena
- Project Mapping
- High-Resolution Media Server System
- Automated Alignment System
- 4k Production Workflows
UBS Arena, a 745,000-square-foot, 17,250-seat hockey and entertainment arena located at historic Belmont Park in Elmont, N.Y., and the new home of the NHL‘s New York Islanders – a franchise celebrating its 50th anniversary in 2022-2023 – opened on November 20, 2021. Built for hockey and made for music, the arena is one of the most operationally efficient venues in the world.
UBS Arena – New York Islanders
A First-Rate Fan Experience for the New York Islanders
The architectural firm, Populous designed the UBS Arena. The plan was to implement cutting-edge architecture infused with the latest technology to amplify the fan and athlete experience.
Quince Imaging was tasked with designing a projection mapping solution to deliver the New York Islanders’ vision of implementing the best and brightest system in the League, creating a first-rate fan experience, and complementing all other state-of-the-art technologies throughout the arena. Competition for the top slot in the League was high, given Quince’s 2018 installation at the PNC Arena, which had been the NHL’s brightest projection mapping system for four years.
Projection System Collaboration
Quince Imaging, the New York Islanders, and UBS Arena building architects collaborated to design and integrate the ideal projection mapping system.
Projection System Package:
- Provision of a projection system capable of covering the entirety of the ice playing surface with enough light to compete with the massive LED displays.
- All projection hardware and associate rigging, access, and automation components for servicing.
- High-resolution media server system capable of playing back discreet 4k to all six projector locations, including show control and redundancy provisions.
- Automated alignment system for warping & blending between events.
- All Routing, signal distribution, signal conversion, and format conversion for 4K workflows.
Projection Technology Used:
Once the project plan was in place, the next step was to use the most sophisticated technology available to carry out the vision.
- The projection System featuring 12 Panasonic PT-RQ50KU projectors was running at native 4K resolution. Over 53 million active pixels on ice!
- Christie Mystique LSE multi-camera auto-calibration system for single click projection calibration between games, integrated with Pandoras Box control and playback
- DisplayNet SDVoE transmission system for 4K signal extension and routing
- The fully automated rigging package provided by Mountain Productions is equipped with a Tait Navigator control system for precision positioning.
CREATING A TAILORED SOLUTION FOR UBS ARENA
Providing a custom solution for the New York Islanders and UBS Arena required extensive collaboration between Quince Imaging and trusted partners, WJHW and Panasonic. WJHW, a consulting firm specializing in entertainment systems, is well known by sports, theatre, and entertainment venues throughout the nation. WJHW works closely with clients to procure top talent for entertainment installations and began securing Quince Imaging as a leading integrator for sports systems with the awarding of the PNC projection system installation. When the UBS Arena projection system proposal came in, Quince Imaging was the natural choice for installation.
“As the trend for larger, brighter LED scoreboards, ribbons, and supporting displays has become a necessity in the world of professional sports, the brightness needed to deliver an effective and long-lasting arena projection system has become imperative. The brightness of 30k and 40k projection systems, while adequate in some older venues, is no match for the intensity of the Panasonic 50k. The self-imposed challenge we face daily at Quince Imaging is designing and integrating systems that perform and stand the test of time. We are celebrating nearly a decade of operational excellence with several arenas utilizing their fully functioning original systems. We build systems meant to last. If client satisfaction is the success metric, Quince Imaging is winning.”
A Visionary Model for what Projection System Technology Can Accomplish
The New York Islanders debuted the visionary projection mapping system at UBS Arena on November 20, 2021. Leveraging the expertise of Quince Imaging, in partnership with WJHW and Panasonic, the on-ice projections for opening night were a resounding success at the sold-out premiere home game at UBS Arena.
The projection system allows us to brilliantly display vibrant 3D imagery and creates a “Wow Factor” for our fans. Even with spillover light from other areas of the arena, our imagery remains crisp and dynamic in color. Using this next-generation technology elevates our ability to put on a first-class show. Ryan Halkett, SVP, Event Presentation, Content Experiences, and Operations
Sustainability and Longevity to engage fans for years to come
Quince Imaging installs projection systems meant to last. The laser light source of the Panasonic projectors provides not only a bright image but also maintenance-free operations. Laser-based projectors allow the system to run for ten seasons without requiring parts or consumables. Designing for maintenance-free operations is critical in major market arenas where venue access for maintenance comes at a premium.
Final Project Thoughts
“3D projection mapping onto ice surfaces keeps the crowd’s energy flowing before and between periods. Fans are thoroughly immersed and stimulated by 3D graphics and imagery projected directly onto the rink surface throughout the game. Our clients continually inspire us to innovate the fan experience, and the evolution of ice mapping has been rapid due to the technical innovation we’ve seen over the past several years. It has truly been an honor to collaborate with the New York Islanders on the inception of the newest arena and the brightest projection mapping system in the League,” said Quince Imaging System Designer Dan Ribaudo.
The projection system allows us to brilliantly display vibrant 3D imagery and creates a “Wow Factor” for our fans.
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