Show me that in light­ing

Aussie-made lights could shine on Al­bert Park, writes PAULGOVER

Herald Sun - Motoring - - News -

THE Aus­tralian-made light­ing sys­tem that could even­tu­ally il­lu­mi­nate For­mula One at Al­bert Park has just been given a global thumbs up. Hella Aus­tralia now in­tends to mount a world­wide pro­mo­tional push for its sys­tem, start­ing in grand prix rac­ing but spread­ing to a range of other sports and even to po­ten­tial use by emer­gency ser­vices.

The Hella sys­tem — gi­ant re­flec­tors that em­ploy the tech­nol­ogy used in the head­lamps of Aus­tralian-made cars — was demon­strated at the com­pany’s base in Men­tone dur­ing Grand Prix week.

Hella ex­ec­u­tives also met the head of For­mula One safety, Char­lie Whit­ing of the Fed­er­a­tion In­ter­na­tionale de l’Au­to­mo­bile, at Al­bert Park to present their pack­age.

‘‘The sys­tem will be en­dorsed by the FIA, sub­ject to a fi­nal pre­sen­ta­tion to the FIA safety board,’’ Hella Aus­tralia spokesman Thomas Plessinger says. ‘‘We will be go­ing to ei­ther Lon­don or Monaco to give that pre­sen­ta­tion. We are hop­ing it will be in May, about the time of the Monaco Grand Prix.’’

Hella is al­ready mov­ing ahead as it eyes night-rac­ing op­por­tu­ni­ties on the F1 cal­en­dar.

‘‘The pos­si­ble cir­cuits are in Ja­pan, Malaysia and Aus­tralia — with a big ques­tion mark — then other cir­cuits such as In­dia, Korea and per­haps Rus­sia, which are com­ing into the cham­pi­onship.’’

Hella says it can build a sys­tem suit­able for an F1 track for about $15 mil­lion and rent it, as it has pro­posed for Al­bert Park, for about $5 mil­lion a year.

Plessinger says Hella is yet to talk to the AGP or­gan­is­ers in any de­tail but is not wor­ried be­cause of the over­seas op­por­tu­ni­ties.

A Mo­toGP night race has al­ready been held in Qatar, us­ing a Musco light­ing sys­tem from the US sim­i­lar to the one at Calder Park Thun­der­dome, and the Malaysian GP or­gan­is­ers ran a Musco test this week at Sepang.

‘‘If we wait we will miss the win­dow of op­por­tu­nity,’’ Plessinger says.

Shin­ing ex­am­ple: Hella Aus­tralia has de­vel­oped a revo­lu­tion­ary light­ing sys­tem for rac­ing cir­cuits that could be used at the Grand Prix.

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