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Maxell Aqua Park Tunnel

Making Aquarium Magic With Holographic Technology in Toyko

How Neonode technology helped give Japan’s favorite aquarium a holographic makeover.

In the heart of Tokyo, nestled inside the famous Shinagawa Prince Hotel, is a unique aquarium where edutainment and panache prosper. Maxell Aqua Park Shinagawa is known for embracing state-of-the art technology to woo visitors, including creative light displays and sophisticated illuminations that complement the learning experience.

It is no surprise that competition in the arts is fierce, and like other industries, the arts and entertainment industry is turning to technology to find new ways to delight visitors and encourage them to return.

The aquarium also boasts an impressive range of sea creatures, including tropical fish, dolphins, jellyfish, manta rays, penguins and seals. But now, fish aren’t the only things floating in this watery wonderland...

Creating a Submersive, Immersive Experience

Interactive holographic displays that aquarium visitors can push to display information have been installed by Maxell, an electronics manufacturer and sponsor of the aquarium. Aquarium visitors can manipulate the holographic displays to see the description of the fish.

Maxell’s Advanced Floating Image Display (AFID) – are floating in-air panels that use optical image technology to allow people to “touch” educational holographic images. Visitors can interact with the displays to learn more about the animals in this unique aquarium, including sharks, rays and the rare dwarf sawfish.

This cutting-edge holographic solution is powered by Neonode’s Touch Sensor modules, which are distributed in Japan by Global Electronics. It uses mirrored projection plates to redirect light emanating from LCD displays and concentrate it into a position equal distance from the plate, creating a floating image. Light reflective technology allows areas on projected images to become responsive, allowing for complete in-air interaction. This is made possible via our zForce® technology, which accurately identifies and traces objects by detecting reflected infrared light beams.

Exciting but safe, not only do these ethereal screens offer a fun way to impart information and inspire learning, they also offer a contactless alternative to physical screens, dramatically reducing the spread of germs.

With the end-customer experience in mind, Mr. Kenichi Sano, Executive Officer Maxell Ltd, said “We hope that the integration of Neonode’s contactless touch technology and Maxell’s imaging optical technology will lead to added value.”

Maxell’s customizable solution also has many use cases in other industries and environments, for example, check-in counters at healthcare facilities, ATM machines, POS registers, and restaurant order systems.

Is a new wave of edutainment on the horizon?

It’s becoming increasingly apparent that education, technology and entertainment go hand in hand. Venues like museums and aquariums are the perfect experimental ground to explore how technology can augment and improve the learning experience. After all, what could possibly be more fun than playing with interactive, fact-filled floating holograms?

Visit Maxell Aqua Park

Learn more about Tokyo's state-of-the-art aquarium at