Monsanto’s Huxley Learning Center – Cutting Edge Tech Showcases the Future of Farming

by | Nov 19, 2014

Iowa is the country’s leading producer of corn, soybeans, pork and ethanol. So what better place to open an agricultural training facility dedicated to helping farmers get the most from their land? One of four such centers created by Monsanto, each with a different focus, Iowa’s Huxley Learning Center is about, in the words of Monsanto, “maximizing yield potential through maximum data analysis.”

For our Museums + Environments team the Center was an opportunity to fabricate and install an advanced and spectacular interactive, multi-media project.
Under the guidance of Spagnola & Associates, a leading designer in visual communications, we custom-fabricated an 80 foot long light box and a large-format HD LED display to create the Center’s iconic 3,000 square foot lobby (see photo). We also fabricated and installed 16 “learning zones” featuring 25 interactive media and lighting displays, all linked to a master control system. As our Project Manager Jim Guarino put it, “The entire facility is a choreographed “show” with all media and lighting controlled from a central server, which we can service and troubleshoot from our computers.”

Our work also gave us the opportunity to dismantle some farm equipment, including some very old pieces, in order to highlight specific advances in engineering that have played an important role in increasing yields and productivity.