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Thorn lights up French football stadiums for the Euro 2016 finals

  • Allianz Riviera Stadium Nizza
  • Geoffroy Guichard Stadium Saint-Etienne
  • Stade de lumieres Lyon
Jun 08, 2016

Thorn has provided new lighting for three of the stadiums hosting Euro 2016.

Thorn has provided new lighting for three of the stadiums hosting Euro 2016 in the run-up to the tournament, ensuring that Euro 2016 matches will be seen in the best possible light. A key factor here was the stringent requirements imposed by UEFA for TV broadcasts. Thorn floodlights are in use at Geoffroy-Guichard stadium in Saint-Étienne, at the “Stade des Lumières” (Stadium of Light) in Lyon and at the Allianz-Riviera stadium in Nice. Together these attractive projects for the Thorn team in France represented contracts worth almost 1.5 million euro.

“We’re delighted to be contributing to this major football event through our Thorn brand. As an international lighting group, the Zumtobel Group has already supported many major sporting events. Thorn has more than 40 years’ experience in sports venue lighting and its innovative products will ensure that the scene is set perfectly for the thrilling encounters of Euro 2016. We’re looking forward to seeing top-class games in the stadiums and we’re very proud that our products are helping to deliver top-class lighting,” says Zumtobel Group CEO, Ulrich Schumacher.

A flexible system with variable lighting modes

Working in conjunction with VINCI, a leading player in building and operating football stadiums, and Léon Grosse, Thorn equipped the three venues with various different floodlights including Altis, Areaflood, Mundial and Champion. In addition to the pitches themselves, other areas including car parks, interiors and a facade were also illuminated. At all the stadiums, three or four variable lighting modes are available to meet the different lighting requirements during training, during a match and for TV broadcasts. The ability to adjust the level of illuminance makes this lighting solution not just highly flexible but very energy-efficient, too.

“In the lighting for the Euro 2016 stadiums our primary concern was to comply with UEFA’s guidelines for TV broadcasts in full. At the same time offering various lighting modes was also very important. We’ve been working with Thorn for years now and together we’ve achieved optimal lighting solutions for the stadiums in France –solutions that will soon be seen in action at Euro 2016,” says Damien Venet, Head of Service at the Electrical Contractor SPIE Sud-Est, who realized the lighting solution with Thorn at the stadium in Lyon.

Lighting sports venues for TV broadcasts – the key requirements

In the lighting of such major arenas the primary focus is on compliance with UEFA’s stringent demands for High-Definition TV broadcasts. As many as 300 floodlights are installed per stadium, directed in order to light the pitch evenly to the required illuminance level of 2.000 Lux. The vertical light distribution required to show the players optimally is 1.500 Lux – enabling cameras to capture their movements perfectly across the whole playing area. Even lighting across the whole of the pitch is another requirement, reducing shadows to a minimum. For slow-motion replays and HDTV coverage it is also very important that the light is almost completely flicker-free – a factor that is especially crucial in slow motion TV sequences. This “flicker factor” must be lower than 5% to comply with the UEFA guidelines. Colour rendering (≥80 Ra), colour temperature (5000-6200 Kelvin) and glare rating (GR <50) are further key criteria.

Thorn can draw on decades of experience in sports venue lighting. The brand has been a lighting partner of the legendary Wembley Stadium in London – now called Wembley Stadium connected by EE – for 40 years. Thorn lighting solutions are also in use at the Kapfenberg stadium in Austria, for example, and at Spennymoor Town Football Club in the UK. Thorn also provided a state-of-the-art lighting system at the Stadion Energa Gdańsk (Poland) for the Euro 2012 Championships, and ensured that various venues and infrastructures appeared in their best light at the Sochi winter games.

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