Marwell Zoo
Energy for Life

Marwell Zoo’s £8m Tropical House enables guests to experience face-to-face encounters with a diversity of wildlife and exotic plants in a tropical climate, while learning about the flow of energy through life.

Revealing Energy for Life

17 audiovisual and interactive exhibits

1x 5m wide projection mapped audiovisual
4x transparent screen interactives
4x tablet interactives
3x dual screen audiovisual interactives
2x thermal camera interactives
2x touch screen interactives
1x ambient soundscape
Content management system
Creative direction, software development, audio visual production, hardware supply and installation
Marwell Zoo’s £8m Tropical House enables guests to experience face-to-face encounters with a diversity of wildlife and exotic plants in a tropical climate, while learning about the flow of energy through life. Hot on the heels of Wild Explorers, this innovative and sustainable exhibit creates improved habitats for animals and immersive experiences for guests.

Working with Marwell Zoo’s education team Wide Sky created 17 audiovisual and interactive exhibits across three key zones to enrich the immersive guest experience. The exhibits introduce the role of energy in life, and explore the interaction of natural and human worlds in the production, consumption and re-cycling of energy through nature’s fastest moving eco system.

This unique visitor experience creates a compelling interpretation story and educational opportunities for 'Energy for Life' Tropical House.

Forces of Nature Audiovisual

Entering the Tropical House, visitors feel its hot, humid eco system. A dramatic 5m wide projection-mapped audiovisual sets the scene, immersing visitors in the energy underlying life.

Forces of Nature combines dramatic films of the natural world with CGI animation of scientific analysis and atmospheric soundscapes to establish themes of energy production, consumption and re-use that visitors will encounter throughout their journey.

Species ID

Stepping onto the boardwalk, visitors are immersed in the lush habitat, sights and sounds of a rainforest. Formed by more than 650 plants with a range of animal species from charismatic mammals, free-flying birds, reptiles, amphibians, to invertebrates and 2,500 fish in a 70,000-litre aquarium, the environment enables uninterrupted face-to-face encounters with animals.

Species ID interactives enable visitors to identify and explore the animals that live in this amazing eco-system. Scalable and updateable, they deliver multi-layered interpretation in a minimal footprint, matching the desire for an immersive experience with light-touch interpretation.
“This phenomenal exhibit is our largest and most ambitious project to date. It is designed to be a key guest experience with clear and complementary education and sustainability.”
James Cretney, Chief Executive Marwell Zoo

Ecology Cluster

A rainforest clearing reveals the Eco Cluster, an abandoned science station analysing energy flow through nature exploring the sun’s energy, its conversion into energy for life, energy flow between plants and animals, and carbon as the power pack of life.

Hi-tech transparent touchscreens overlay digital interpretation and a little magic onto artefacts. As visitors explore, artefacts are revealed, transformed and become part of the story.

Science Gallery – Thermal

The cool dark of the Science Gallery immerses visitors in nature’s genius for energy efficiency and renewal.

Energy flow becomes personal as visitors’ real-time thermal signatures are projected onto the gallery – this 3m wide thermal selfie stops them in their tracks. An interactive experiment table lets them play with conductors and insulators to explore thermal efficiency.
“It represents a high quality, novel and immersive exhibit creating much needed indoor and weather-proof space, adding to the overall standard of the Marwell experience.”
James Cretney, Chief Executive Marwell Zoo

Science Gallery – Pooseum

Energy efficiency in the extreme! Pooseum explores how the most unlikely ‘waste’ has value. It examines renewal in nature – how waste is a battery for new life, and how we can apply this to our own lifestyles.

Moving magnifiers enable close examination of animal dung. Linked digital interactives explain the value and capability of each as an energy source.

Science Gallery – Climate Wall and Soundscape

Climate Wall completes the energy for life theme and visitor journey. Super-wide interactive projections show the effects of our energy use being out of balance with nature, the energy opportunities and options for powering our lifestyles, and the value of everyday actions: how we can apply nature’s lessons and normalise the use of renewables.

Touchscreens control the experience, the projections filling visitors’ peripheral vision to continue the theme of immersive content. Film, 3D animation and CGI communicate complex science in easy to digest bites.

The content draws parallels between our day-to-day lives and the Tropical House eco system and encourages visitors to take inspiration from nature and apply it to their everyday lives.