World Expo 2005 Aichi, which opened its gates 15 years ago today, was the venue for numerous technological innovations, including the Super Hi-Vision Theater - where the public was introduced to what is commonly known as Ultra HDTV for the first time.
NHK Science & Technical Research Laboratories developed an experimental ultrahigh-definition video and sound system in time to be showcased in Expo 2005’s Global House. With a 600-inch screen, a 22.2 multichannel surround sound system and 16 times as many pixels as regular HDTV, the Super Hi-Vision Theater offered an unprecedented entertainment experience.
In the course of the Expo, visitors to the pavilion had the opportunity to view one of two films shown in the Ultra-HDTV cinema – man and nature documentary A Hymn to Life, and a visual poem depicting the change of seasons in Japan. Drawing some 1.56 million visitors over six months, the Ultra-HDTV experience proved a major success, with the technology continuing to be developed in the following years, and its format becoming standardised in 2012.
The Bureau International des Expositions (BIE) is the intergovernmental organisation in charge of overseeing and regulating World Expos, Specialised Expos, Horticultural Expos and the Triennale di Milano.