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Thorn brings Elite Level A lighting to Dortmund’s SIGNAL IDUNA PARK

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  • Lamp efficacy

    Lamp efficacy

    Ensuring the lamp efficiently converts electricity into light (lm/W).

  • Ballast classification

    Ballast classification

    Controlling the electricity supply to the lamp (Energy Efficiency Index).

  • Luminaire distribution

    Luminaire distribution

    Controlling light emission using optics which bend and shape the light to the correct location.

  • System efficacy

    System efficacy

    Combining optical and thermal control within the luminaire (luminaire lm/W).

  • Presence/absence detection

    Presence/absence detection

    Presence: Lights automatically turn on/off with movement. Absence: Lights automatically turn off and must be manually switched on.

  • Daylight detection

    Daylight detection

    Artificial lighting which responds to the natural light conditions.

  • Constant illuminance

    Constant illuminance

    A function designed to produce correct light levels for the duration of the maintenance period.

  • Task-scene setting

    Task-scene setting

    Allowing the user to set scenes and adapt the lighting to different tasks.

  • Timed off

    Timed off

    Automatic cut-off can be installed to turn all lights off during unoccupied hours.

  • Task lighting

    Task lighting

    Lighting task areas with the correct amount of light.

  • Zoning of lighting

    Zoning of lighting

    Lighting is zoned according to area use.

  • Maintenance schedule

    Maintenance schedule

    Maintenance must be performed in response to product age, performance and environment.

  • Waste light

    Waste light

    Eliminating waste light which does not hit the intended target.

  • Reflectance


    Taking advantage of light which is reflected from the surface within the space.

  • Visible smart metering

    Visible smart metering

    Results of actions can be quickly seen as increased or decreased energy use to encourage responsible energy consumption.

The challenge

Trust is built on consistency and excellence over time. Needing to replace the analogue floodlight system of its home stadium to comply with the new broadcast lighting standards of the German Bundesliga (DFL), the professional football side Borussia Dortmund once again turned to its trusted partner, the sports lighting specialist Thorn of the Zumtobel Group.

Regularly filled to capacity with more than 81,000 sports enthusiasts, the iconic SIGNAL IDUNA PARK is the largest football venue in Germany and one of the most widely recognised. As one of the sites selected for the EURO 2024 football championship, the new floodlight installation also had to fulfil the lighting requirements stipulated by the UEFA. In addition to that, the club wanted to invest in a future-proof LED system that would provide energy savings, be easy to control and offer the possibility to add further lighting effects at a later point in time. Dr. Christian Hockenjos, Director of Organisation at Borussia Dortmund, described the decision this way:

“Our previous floodlights would not have complied with the new regulations, which call for 1,600 lux. We didn't have that. This meant we had to invest in an upgrade anyway, so we said to ourselves, we may as well do the right thing and switch to LED technology.”

The lighting solution

With these project parameters in mind, Thorn came up with a made-to-measure lighting solution comprising 252 high-powered Altis floodlights. Installed in place of the analogue lights under the stadium roof, they provide a maximum illuminance of 2,100 lux towards the cameras – well in excess of the 1,600 lux required by the DFL. What’s more, the new installation also fulfils the 1,500 lux vertical illuminance specified by the UEFA for Elite Level A stadiums.

The three-brick version of the LED luminaire proved to be a perfect fit for the project. Highly modular and flexible in its design options, it enables easy lighting level and distribution configuration for a broad spectrum of sports venues of every size and shape. Most importantly for larger facilities, Altis delivers first-rate, flicker-free light with a >80 TLCI (television lighting consistency index) – ideal for HDTV broadcasts and super slow-motion images. Stefan Thiel, Business Development Manager at Zumtobel Group, summarizes its television performance as follows:

The new LED floodlights with modern lighting technology offer the best lighting quality. Their brilliant colour reproduction as well as their flicker-free operation are especially needed for super-slow-motion HDTV broadcasts.

Linking it all together is an IP-based control system with which each of the 252 floodlights is connected through the DMX interface of their respective drivers. It allows for convenient, flexible

control of the entire lighting installation in real time, including stepped dimming and on/off switching.

The system can be very easily expanded to support dynamic lighting scenarios for various events. This may be an option in future, as Dr. Hockenjos adds:


“We invested in new floodlights, not in a light show. We want floodlights for football matches, not for a bombastic laser show at half three in the afternoon. Until now, we've been renting a laser technology system for events, which costs a lot of money. Our new LED system gives us the basic groundwork to have our own laser technology installed in the future.”

The result

The management of BVB Borussia Dortmund opted to have the entire project handled by the Zumtobel Group’s turnkey service. As a result, the club could be certain that all project tasks – from the planning to the installation and commissioning – would be conducted efficiently, cost-effectively and on time.

The new, high-performance Altis floodlight installation supplied by Thorn breathes new life into one of the great football venues with one of the most electrifying atmospheres – the SIGNAL IDUNA PARK. It provides a whole new level of brilliance. Easy to control in real time, the future-proof system offers the possibility for further lighting customisation down the road. Above all, it easily fulfils the new broadcast lighting requirements of the German Bundesliga (DFL) and the UEFA for the EURO 2024. Dr. Christian Hockenjos once more:

"With the new highly modern floodlight, we have sustainably invested in the basic technical equipment of the stadium. With 2100 lux in the direction of the cameras, we now clearly exceed the DFL minimum requirements and already meet the UEFA requirements for the EURO 2024.

For Thorn, the SIGNAL IDUNA PARK project offered the opportunity to once again demonstrate its reliability as a trusted partner as well as its unique ability for designing and developing tailored stadium lighting installations. Other renowned football venue for which it has recently provided solutions include the Opel Arena of FSV Mainz 05, in Germany.