Eaton Experience Center

July 23, 2019 Jenn Petersen

Art, technology and information come together to communicate corporate values and inspire visitors

Cleveland, Ohio

OVERVIEW

When you want to make a powerful statement about your role in global energy management, few things do it better than a 53-foot multimedia chandelier and an 80-foot LED curtain. This is innovative technology fused with architecture and storytelling on an impressive scale. It’s designed to inform and inspire visitors with no-nonsense communication of Eaton’s values and strengths. The company is a global leader in power management solutions and those dramatic elements are the centrepiece of their Cleveland headquarters.

Cleveland is one of a series of Eaton Experience Centers designed to provide customers with hands-on training in multiple application environments. The centers are the first of their kind in the industry and their focus is on ‘pulling back the curtain’. They give customers an opportunity to see the impact of their products from a broad perspective and then dive into design, technology and installation practices. Cleveland is both headquarters and training venue playing host to a wider audience including employees, customers, suppliers, business partners, media and government and civic leaders.

To make the strongest statement about their brand, Eaton decided to implement a large-scale immersive media project. They wanted the brand imagery to be seen from all perspectives of the building — inside all five storeys and outside by passers-by. The solution, designed by Ralph Appelbaum Associates with system design by Electrosonic, features a 53-foot chandelier and 80-foot LED curtain that work together to present information about global energy and technology trends. The form of the elements conveys the often understated level of innovative technology solutions being created by Eaton. The LED curtain displays a series of inspiring messages about the company while a massive stone map of the world demonstrates Eaton’s global presence and capability. Together, the elements reflect the company’s values of ‘Customers, Trust, Respect, Dignity, Integrity and People.’

CHALLENGE

Eaton’s vision for the atrium was both inspirational and challenging for the design team. It had to make a dramatic impression inside and outside the building — a showstopper with the WOW factor. And, it had to reflect Eaton’s brand strength and core business - management of power. The chandelier, which reaches five storeys, and the 80-foot curtain wall represent audiovisual design, precision engineering, build and control on a grand scale. Both are elegant, lightweight, tensile structures that support an open-weave mesh of LEDs. Construction was challenging, not just because of size. The LED fabric had to be built section-by section but each section had to be inch-perfect to ensure the panels would fit together to display multimedia content correctly. Each LED had to be individually controlled so that it could create a flexible canvas for different types of large-scale content, such as media on a predetermined timeline or content for a specific presentation. Power supply and control were critical, given the nature of Eaton’s business, so custom power panels and real- time monitoring to the most rigorous standards were essential.

Architecture, storytelling and technology fused in an inspiring, dramatic, innovative presentation of Eaton’s corporate values.

SOLUTION

Visitors are engaged in an immersive multimedia experience as soon as they enter. The entry gallery features a 140-feet graphic mural leading to a transparent 80 feet x 14 feet LED wall displaying messaging, abstract images and data-driven content. The giant chandelier reflects the wall imagery while interactive multimedia tables let visitors explore deeper levels of information on topics displayed on the chandelier and wall.

KEY TAKEAWAYS

The multimedia experience integrates architecture, storytelling and technology in an innovative way that meets Eaton’s inspirational vision. Visitors are engaged from the outset, helping to build relationships with influential audiences. While the installation has already proved a winner, the open architecture will allow change and growth for future needs. And, the achievement has been recognized with an Award of Merit by the Society for Experiential Graphic Design.

"This installation shows in a dramatic way what you can achieve when an AV systems integrator like Electrosonic is brought on board early during the design process and then executes the work." -Tim Ventimiglia, Director of Berlin Operations, Ralph Appelbaum Associates

Download a copy of this project profile here.

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