"Don't think the use the full dome though, looks like they just blast it up big."
You have to be careful of this, they have done that here sometimes too, take a 35mm film and just "blow it up" It is a terrible result. However some movies are made for imax, they actually go in and upconvert the film to the higher resolution of imax - 70mm I believe.
Freke this guy has done what you suggest:http://www.icinema.unsw.edu.au/projects/infra_dome.html
360 degree global recording
Video for the iDome was shot with a Ladybug camera system from Point Grey Research. It allows digital spherical recordings at 360 degree horizontal and 240 degree vertical field of view. The camera has a tightly packed cluster of six CCD sensors with wide angle lenses and slight overlap between the images. In post processing these individual frames are colour and geometrically corrected, and then stitched to a high resolution equirectangular image (3600x1800 pixel).
Alternatively, the iCinema Spherecam can be used. The Spherecam has sufficient resolution to be able to "zoom" into the video and obtain a "close-up" of details.
Cyber - they have several imax flat screens here and the one dome, imax and imax3d are good, but imax dome has to be the best so far, simply because it fills your full FOV and that tricks your brain in ways the other technologies can't. I have never seen little kids get scared by anything but the DOME technology. A couple fell over as they tried to leave the theater, vertigo must have set in.
The futures so bright, I gotta wear shades!http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=WDdI_sfNop8