Electrical engineer and light-emitting-diode (LED) supplier Maritz Electrical completed the installation of an interactive lighting system at the St George’s Park cricket stadium, in Port Elizabeth, in the Eastern Cape.
“These lights can be turned on instantly, doing away with the lengthy, power-consuming conventional lighting often used at stadiums. The lights can also be set to flash in time with music and to indicate action, for example when runs are scored in a T20 cricket match,” notes Maritz Electrical owner Kurt Maritz.
Completed in December, this installation is in response to the global drive towards employing technologically advanced lighting at sport stadiums using on-demand and interactive lighting, making it an experience for the audience and bringing them more into the action, he adds.
The lighting system included the installation of six lighting masts and 304 of US-based sport lighting solution manufacturer Musco Lighting’s total light control LED 1400 W luminaires.
Maritz Electrical has been a key driver of introducing the Musco lighting system in the Western Cape, having secured the sole distribution rights in the region last year.
Further, Maritz points out that, at the time, St George’s Park could boast being the only International Cricket Council-compliant, LED-lit cricket stadium globally that had theatrical lighting effects.
“This is also the only LED-lit stadium in the country that offers theatrics, including flashing, chasing, dimming effects and even the ability to flash a four or a six giving spectators a theatrical experience as the lights flash on and off during the game.”
Since this installation, he says other stadiums have also shown interest in Maritz’s lighting solution offerings, owing to the official opening of the improved stadium being televised on satellite television channel SuperSport on November 10, when the Warriors played the Knights.
“At the opening, we had a light show displaying the effects of the Digital Multiplex System, which provided music to which the Musco lighting system is able to respond.”
Maritz notes that, with the tight timeline to complete the installation from June to December, the teams had to work increased daily hours and on weekends. The company also increased the number of staff during the project to meet the deadline.
“With St George’s Park being a heritage facility in Port Elizabeth, we had to install two of the lighting masts at the Duck Pond end on the building towers, which required numerous assessments and calculations from the in-house engineers to ensure that the weight pertaining to the installation would be accommodated by the existing towers.”
Additionally, Port Elizabeth is known as the “windy city”, which raised challenges with rigging. Maritz Electrical had numerous “fail days”, where lifts could not be done, owing to the strong gusts, consequently adding pressure to meet the deadline.