top of page


3D Modelling the Washington Monument for ‘Apollo 50: Go for the Moon’ 

To mark the 50th anniversary of the Apollo 11 voyage (the first moon landing and one of humankind’s greatest achievements), 59 Productions was commissioned to create a new piece of public artwork to celebrate this hugely important anniversary on one of America's iconic landmarks.

59 Productions are world leaders in projection-mapping. In collaboration with The Smithsonian National Air and Space Museum, and multi-award-winning composer Jeff Beal (House of Cards) they created an original sound, light and projection piece called Apollo 50: Go for the Moon, which would be projected onto the Washington Monument. The show would provide an understanding of the scope and complexity of the entire Apollo program and allow the audience to experience the dramatic launch of the 363-foot Saturn V rocket that carried all of the Apollo missions to the Moon.

In order to turn the Washington Monument into a display surface for video projection, creators needed a detailed 3D model of the iconic obelisk and its surroundings. This is where SUMO APR Services stepped in to provide a solution.


The Objective


To produce a full detail 3D model of the Washington Monument and surrounding land to enable the complete planning and subsequent projection of artwork on to the Washington Monument by the client.


Services Provided


A detailed 3D model was created from laser-scanned point cloud data collected from the site. The model of the monument, including over 2,500 individual bricks on the east face and surrounding area provided the necessary display surface for the animations to be projected on to. 


Key Successes


SUMO APR's 3D model was used by the client to plan and create a 1:1 scale projection of the Saturn V Rocket on the Washington Monument. As well as to produce a large-scale public event which took place across two evenings, including the anniversary of the moon landing. On July 19th and 20th 2019, the Washington Monument was transformed with a fantastic 17-minute projection-mapping artwork display, combining NASA archive footage and bespoke animations to narrate the remarkable story of the launch and first lunar landing for an audience of 500,000 people.


Watch behind the scenes of this visual masterpiece in the video below, courtesy of Smithsonian National Air and Space Museum

Survey techniques used in this case study...


3D Modelling




Receive a FREE Survey quotation from one of our survey engineers?


Chat through any requirements you need, including site survey, survey methodologies and detail requirements.

bottom of page