Bridgelux's LED Arrays to Light up Italian UNESCO World Heritage Site

Bridgelux, Inc., a leading provider of high-performance, solid-state LED arrays, announced the selection of Bridgelux® Décor Series™ LED arrays for a new lighting installation at the Lower Basilica of San Francesco of Assisi in Italy, a UNESCO World Heritage site. Founded in 1228, the Basilica is decorated with frescoes painted by medieval artists, illustrating the unique development of Italian art. The new lighting system will highlight the unique quality of the stunning frescoes, while providing safe illumination over the delicate paint and colors.

"Light is a powerful medium that can lift one’s heart, mind and spirit,” reflected Aaron Merrill, vice president of marketing for Bridgelux.  “It is inspiring to see modern lighting design expertise and leading edge LED technology come together to beautify, preserve and pay tribute to the ‘good works’ of artisans of old who sought to glorify the Church. Bridgelux is honored to have been selected for the project, providing some of the highest color rendering light source technology in the world to help illuminate these awe inspiring works of art displayed in such a historically significant and sacred place of worship." 

Over 550 Bridgelux Décor Series Ultra LED arrays were chosen for the lower Basilica because of their state-of-the-art color rending with a high CRI of 97, which emphasizes the reds and other radiant color tones to which the human eye is most receptive. In addition to the Basilica’s updated look, the new solid state lighting (SSL) system will consume 80 percent less energy, generate 70 percent less heat, and last 20 times longer than previously installed halogen light sources.

The Sacro Convento of San Francesco d’Assisi approached Italian Lighting Designer and Professor at University of Roma Tre, Marco Frascarolo, for a lighting solution that offered the latest innovative illumination and environmental impact solution, while preserving the medieval feel. “We are very satisfied with Bridgelux SSL technology. It has resulted in a perfect illumination and a great energy saving,“ shared Mauro Gambetti and Sergio Fusetti, respectively Padre Custode and Conservatore of The Basilica.

Marco Frascarolo designed the new lighting system and is very familiar with projects of this magnitude. As the lighting designer for the new Sistine Chapel lighting system and author of the new guidelines for the Colosseum lighting system, Frascarolo notes, “Key elements of the project meant controlling the best technology in an environment addressing luminous fluxes, giving value to architecture and frescoes, minimizing glare, maximizing energy consumption, and creating the perfect atmosphere for each different moment of the Basilica's life.”

ILM Lighting manufactured customized fixtures for the project. Federico Ognibene, CEO of ILM, commented that “it was a great challenge to build and design fixtures, maintaining dimensions and shapes of the previous lighting installation with the complexity of the new technologies. Thanks to our experience, and the combined use of Bridgelux Décor arrays, and of customized LEDIL lenses with oval light distribution, we built the first worldwide fixture with elliptical optics for arrays, achieving the project goals.”

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