The Ohio State University and Innergex Renewable Energy partner to bring Immersive Farming Experience to Ohioans

Ohio State University Extension’s iFarm Immersive Theater. Photo: CFAES

COLUMBUS, Ohio–The Ohio State University Foundation is pleased to announce that Palomino Solar, a subsidiary of Innergex Renewable Energy has made a generous donation to support Ohio State University Extension’s iFarm Immersive Theater through the purchase of and funding maintenance of the iFarm Immersive Theater.

The theater’s mobile structure, designed by OSU Extension, the outreach arm of The Ohio State University College of Food, Agricultural, and Environmental Sciences (CFAES), gives viewers the opportunity to participate in multiple immersive agricultural experiences.

The iFarm Immersive Theater provides visitors with an IMAX theater-like performance, with a firsthand look at interesting topics in real time, including sound and motion. Inside the iFarm dome, the viewer is fully immersed in the subject matter.

The theater’s 15-foot-tall inflatable dome surrounds the audience with 360 degrees of real-life videos. Most of the videos feature vantage points from locations where people cannot go in person, such as inside a beehive, the cockpit of a crop-dusting airplane, or on the implements attached to a tractor working in the field. An additional video added this summer highlights the entire Ohio agricultural industry. The theater made its debut at Farm Science Review in the fall of 2021.

The iFarm Immersive Theater is now sponsored by Innergex Renewable Energy, who will provide funding to OSU Extension through an exclusive five-year agreement. The iFarm Immersive Theater can be easily moved to locations throughout Ohio. This makes the theater dome and immersive experience more accessible for schools, commodity groups, and other interested local community organizations.

“The iFarm Immersive Theater is a futuristic and innovative way for people to learn about agriculture and many other topics, and we’re pleased to have support from Innergex to help Extension reach a much larger audience throughout the state,” said Sam Custer, interim assistant director for agriculture and natural resources, OSU Extension.

“Innergex is excited to work with OSU Extension to sponsor the innovative iFarm Immersive Theater that showcases the agricultural history of Ohio and allow residents to experience its future using state-of-the art technology. Ohio’s farmland is constantly evolving to face new challenges, and we hope that this immersive experience sparks the interest of new generations for agricultural careers in Ohio,” said David Little, vice president – Development USA at Innergex.

Innergex Renewable Energy Inc. is an independent renewable power producer, developer, owner, and operator of hydroelectric, wind, solar and energy storage facilities. For more than 30 years, Innergex has believed in a world where abundant renewable energy promotes healthier communities and creates shared prosperity. Innergex conducts operations in Canada, the United States, France, and Chile and has a portfolio of assets which includes 40 hydroelectric facilities, 35 wind facilities, 11 solar facilities, and one battery energy storage facility.

OSU Extension offers programming that addresses agriculture and natural resources, community development, family and consumer sciences, and 4-H youth development. Extension is the world’s largest non-formal educational system. OSU Extension fulfills the land-grant mission of The Ohio State University by working alongside citizens to address local and regional needs with practical advice, sensible solutions, and community connections. Extension professionals throughout the state bring people and ideas together to help CFAES sustain life.

CFAES News Team