Augmented Reality iOS App
Natural History Museum

Project

Discover prehistoric life in ways never experienced before guided by natural history legend David Attenborough

Welcome to the Museum. Here, long-extinct come back to life and roam the real world in stunning augmented reality.

Follow a fearsome sabre-toothed tiger as he stalks his prey, soar around the room with a flying dinosaur, and discover one of the strangest sea creatures from over 500 million years ago.

This immersive educational experience brings you into the world of these long lost animals. Search for the information points to discover more about the fossils and their incredible worlds.

Guided by David Attenborough, and including videos and photographs from across his career, this experience is entertaining and educational for the whole family.

Watch David Attenborough’s Natural History Museum Alive Now

This is a special collaboration of experts and curators from the Natural History Museum with 3D and ground-breaking CGI technology.  Set within the spectacular Natural History Museum, Attenborough is able to analyse each specimen, piecing together the clues before finally revealing each creature as it has never been seen before.

 

Augmented Reality

Revealing a lost world of ancient animals

Museum Alive brings scientifically accurate 3D models and animation of now-extinct creatures to life in augmented reality. Combining realistic photogrammetry environments and full 3D ambisonic sound design, this experience immerses users in lost worlds of these ancient animals.

Produced using Unity’s latest AR Foundation technology, Museum Alive’s visual dioramas push the limits of real-time computation on mobile devices.

 

Download Museum Alive

Designed to engage users of all ages in the scientific debates and discourse around extinct life, Museum Alive offers a unique remote education experience. Interactive points scattered around the scene outline the conversations happening about the creatures and visually represents the ways our planet has shifted and changed over millions of years.

 

David Attenborough guides users through the experience with his informative narration and through a variety of videos from his expeditions throughout his career where he investigated the creatures in more detail.

Visit the Canadian Rockies, or journey in the Borneo jungle to understand how the animals lived. This unique experience blends education and entertainment to create an experience that captivates adults and children alike.

Behind The Scenes

Harnessing the power of augmented reality

Produced throughout the 2020 COVID-19 lockdown, Atlantic looked to harness the power of augmented reality to transport users into the world of the past without leaving their own homes.

The team challenged themselves to create a beautiful, clean space to explore extinct life which doesn’t replace the museum experience but is an entirely new way to discover ancient life. Our approach to design was formed around creative an experience that would have digital legacy.

To create a virtual exhibition space that felt modern yet organic, Atlantic looked at ways of integrating textures from the natural world into the home menu where the creatures are exhibited. The team worked on combining classical features like marble plinths with textures such as sand, bark, and water go create a refined yet natural feel.

To make the fossils feel alive, even when they are stood still on the plinths, Atlantic took inspiration from art styles with fluid lines. One of our favourite references was Japanese watercolour arts.

 

Seen here progressed into how we posed our 3D model of Smilodon. The evocative yet simple poses breath life into the fossils.

For the diorama scenes in Museum Alive, it was important to not only accurately bring the fossil back to life but to show how their environment would have looked as realistically as possible.

Planet earth has seen dramatic shifts over the past hundred million years into the world we know today. It was important for users to understand that these creatures were shaped by their environments, even if they are unimaginable on our planet today.

The research into how our planets flora and fauna have changed over millennia is included in the information packs. Users whose interest has been piqued can further explore these alien versions of our world.

Museum Alive with David Attenborough / App Store Download

Awards

LUMIERE Best 3D Documentary

0 Nominations

1 Awards

JACKSON HOLE SMASH Best Earth Sciences

0 Nominations

1 Awards

BAFTA Best Specialist Factual

0 Nominations

1 Awards

Credits

Narrator
David Attenborough

Lead Developer and 3D Artist
Bhaumik Patel

Design Director
Steve McGeorge

Creative Director
Elliot Graves

Creative Producer and Copywriter
Iona McEwan

Producers
Daniel Thompson
Vianney Comot

Executive Producer
Anthony Geffen

Sound Designer
Oliver Kadel

Modelling and Animation
Doroth Ballarini
Rob Angol
Simon Reid
Mark Gregory

VFX and 3D
Atlantic Design & VFX

Immersive Audio
1.618 Digital

Music
Prague Filmharmonic Orchestra
London Metropolitan Orchestra
Steve McLaughin
Joel Douek
Greg Pliska
Richard Fiocca

Legal
Mimi Gilligan

Production
Atlantic Productions

Thanks to
JB Caron
Smithsonian Institution
Natural History Museum