The 2008 Agricultural Technology Field Day will be Aug. 5 at the Airport and Expo Grounds in Great Bend, Kan.

"This is the second time for this location. It has ample room for the popular `ride and drive´ and demonstration portions of the field day," said Bob Wolf, a field day coordinator and agricultural engineer with Kansas State University Research and Extension.

Agricultural technologies are advancing rapidly, Wolf said. For producers and agribusiness persons to stay informed about the latest developments is a challenge.

"But, actually learning about the possible applications and benefits of those technologies can be even more difficult," he said. "In some cases, finding out about the technical support you can reasonably expect may be difficult, too. That´s why the kind of opportunity this field day represents is so important."

The Kansas Agricultural Research Association (KARA) and several corporate sponsors are helping K-State Research and Extension host the event.

"It´s one of the largest ag technology shows in the High Plains. Plus, the field day´s leaders are people who actually have developed, evaluated and used the technologies," said Wolf, who serves as an application technology specialist for K-State´s Department of Biological and Agricultural Engineering.

Just as important, though, the field day allows participants to test-drive equipment with the features they´re learning about. This year, that will include their being able to operate "many of the premier guidance and sprayer systems available today," the engineer said. The program will begin at 9 a.m. and run until 4 p.m.

The day´s discussions will cover automated guidance, yield mapping, data logging, data analysis, and other automation and precision-application technologies. They´ll include a new focus on planting systems with swath control and other automatic components. Another feature will be systems with automatic turning.

Multi-topic demonstrations on sprayer technologies will show automatic boom leveling, automatic boom-swath control, and variable-rate applications. Educational sessions featuring university experts are planned.

"If you are considering or you´re getting ready to upgrade precision agricultural technologies for your farm or application business, you should attend this event," Wolf said. "The program is designed to be `hands-on´ and very applied in nature."

More information and the event´s registration form are available on the KARA Web site at www.ksagresearch.com (click on "Ag Tech Field Day" in the left side column). During most work hours, Wolf also is available to answer questions by phone (785-532-2935) or e-mail (rewolf@ksu.edu).

For those who preregister by July 25, the fee for all handouts and the field day´s on-site lunch is $25 per person. (Preregistered KARA members receive one free admission.) Registration at the door will be $50, with no guarantee that an extra lunch will be available.

"Preregistering would be a big help in our planning for the event," Wolf said.