New light for the illuminated archeology of Pompeii

Published on Wednesday, 5 July 2017

“The project in Pompeii is part of the experience gained in 17 years of activity, through more than a thousand interventions on monuments and museums in Italy and abroad”

– Emanuele Sguazzi, Head of Business-to-Business and Business-to-Government, Country Italy at Enel X

Moreover, the protection and enhancement of historical, artistic and monumental heritage are part of Enel's mission in the countries where it is present. The main purpose of technology can only be to improve people's lives, and particularly to satisfy their aesthetic and spiritual sense.

Smart lights

Already in the year 2000, Enel had lit up the night in Pompeii, but the new show, from 8th July to 24th August, could rely on the latest advances in the field of intelligent lighting: remote management technologies, smart LED lighting solutions, soundscapes and 3D imaging, ending with the video made by specialists at the Information Technologies Lab of the Institute for Archaeological and Monumental Heritage of the Italian National Research Council (CNR), which tells about the architecture and paintings of the villas, Pompeian red, and the relationship between the city's inhabitants and the environment.

“Imagine what it means to be able to offer the world a visit by night to Pompeii, what this means in terms of emotions and beauty, but also of economic growth for the territory”

– Dario Franceschini, Minister of Cultural Heritage and Activities and Tourism

As stressed by Sguazzi, “At the Pompeii Archaeological Park, we renovated the system that was built in the year 2000, using innovative technology.” 

“The solution used in Pompeii can be likened to a true smart grid, combining energy efficiency, beauty and the opportunity to enhance a fascinating and unique itinerary ”

– Emanuele Sguazzi, Head of Business-to-Business and Business-to-Government, Country Italy at Enel X

Compared to the 2000 project, the innovations applied by Enel have been comprehensive, replacing all the old halogen lamps with LED lights, reducing consumption by 60%, introducing, thanks also to the modernization of part of the area's power lines, an advanced automation system, which makes it possible to control the entire system remotely and to adjust the luminous intensity of each of the 432 lighting points along the itinerary to create different and unique emotions for every ambiance and archaeological find, enhancing them with sounds, noise and videos.

“The multidisciplinary project saw a number of different professionals at work. And thanks to the collaboration with the superintendence, of all the officials and site assistants, we were able to complete this delicate project in total safety and fully respecting all the archaeological artifacts”

– Vincenzo Ascione, Project Manager Business-to-Business and Business-to-Government, Country Italy at Enel X

A path of light

The technical and artistic project, called "Una notte a Pompei” - A Night in Pompeii -, invites visitors to follow a path of light from Porta Marina Maggiore, then continuing through the shops of Via Marina, the Temple of Apollo, the Forum, the Temple of Vespasian, the Macellum and public buildings, to the Basilica: a journey that constantly enthuses visitors who are guided at every step by Enel's smart solutions.

“Pompeii’s new lighting system is another important step in the revival of an archaeological site, which is unique in the world. Thanks to the evocative interplay of lights, the outline and shapes of the ruins are now shining with new beauty,” commented Dario Franceschini, Italian Minister of Cultural Heritage and Activities and Tourism, as he spoke at the inaugural ceremony. I believe that this itinerary of sounds and lights will spread around the world: a postcard that shows a beautiful and contemporary face of Italy, combining development and tradition,” added Carlo Tamburi, Head of Country Italy at Enel. It is a face of Italy, which, thanks also to Enel's light, displays the most precious treasures of its extraordinary historical wealth. And speaking of history, Charles of Bourbon never saw the completion of the archaeological excavations at Pompeii nor Enel's light, but he would certainly be proud of it: the Enlightenment that inspired him has finally been embodied in a form of illumination that is available to all citizens.


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