National Geographic is no stranger to hosting tech-fueled, immersive experiences for consumers to promote new programming. The network’s latest innovative event allowed guests to experience outer space through the vantage point of an astronaut by using new, wearable technology.
To promote its upcoming 10-part series One Strange Rock—in which astronauts tell the story of Earth—the network invited guests to test out its new OSR Space Projection Helmets at a viewing event that took place March 14 at the Whitby Hotel in New York. The replica space helmet, which National Geographic developed with global creative agency McCann New York, uses projection technology to create an immersive, virtual viewing experience of footage from the series. The experience combines laser projection, custom fish-eye optics, and built-in audio. Setting itself apart from other VR headsets, the helmets offer a significantly wide field of view and were designed so that viewers can move their heads inside to see the entire field of vision.
The helmets also were provided at the red carpet premiere event that night, which took place at Lincoln Center's Alice Tully Hall. This spring, the helmets will travel to schools and planetariums in select cities, including the Center of Science and Industry in Columbus, Ohio, and Liberty State Science Center in Jersey City.
One Strange Rock, which is produced by Darren Aronofsky and Jane Root—through her TV production company Nutopia—and hosted by Will Smith, premieres March 26.