The IAA (The International Motor Show) in Frankfurt takes place every two years and is considered the most important automobile trade show in the world. Across more than 9,000 m2, Mercedes-Benz presented about 100 luxury cars. 1,800 fixtures were used – 804 of them were from Martin Professional.
470 MAC™ Quantum Wash, 54 MAC™ Viper Wash DX and 280 MAC™ 2000 Wash XB played an all-important role, highlighting the vehicles and illuminating the booth. For many years, German Sound & Light Veranstaltungstechnik GmbH has been responsible for lighting and rigging on the Mercedes-Benz IAA booth. This year, according to Project Manager Andreas Locher, an impressive 2,000 man-days were spent on setup, maintenance and dismantling, delivery of 180 tonnes of equipment, 120 km of cabling and a connected load of 3 mW.
Extensive build-up phase
The team started the build-up process in mid-July and handed over the completed system to the customer September 1st. An exhibition booth of this scale is almost comparable to a permanent installation. The lighting system ran for a period of four weeks, without any downtime or cooling-off periods, all the while the stand appeared totally tidy to visitors – neither a single cable nor safety wire in sight. “The quality which is required for this type of event is completely distinct from a classical rock’n roll production”, Andreas Locher explains.
Cabling alone took 50 working days. All cables were installed in a ventilated tunnel construction in order to keep them separate and avoid overheating and fire hazard. Locher said:
"Due to the long hours of operation, stacking cables on top of each other, as you would do in rock ‘n’ roll setups or on a classic corporate event, simply wasn’t an option."
The Main Stage
Every 40 Minutes there was a live show featuring live performers, talk show hosts and vehicles driving across the main stage. In the truss, 20 m above the stage, MAC Viper Wash DX fulfilled their purpose of illuminating people and the MAC 2000 Wash XBs enhanced the vehicles. The MAC Quantum Washes hung from trusses above for overall booth lighting.
The main set element was a 45 m wide, 8 m high LED wall consisting of revolving gates. During the show, the gates opened to reveal an immense car rack on which classical vehicles, as well as novelties, were placed. 100 MAC Quantum Wash fixtures were installed side-by-side in the light frame in front of the wall, making a lighting show on the gates.
The MAC Quantum deserves its name
Despite continuously advancing LED technology, Locher still has a preference for conventional fixtures when it comes to illuminating vehicles. However, the MAC Quantum being an LED-based product features a series of individual advantages, such as reduced power consumption, reduced thermal load and a compact design, which all combined make a substantial difference compared to conventional fixtures. "I don't even want to begin to think about weights and sizes if I would have had to install, for example, 100 MAC 2000 Wash XB fixtures before the LED wall.”
"The MAC Quantum truly is a quantum leap in the development of LED technology. When it comes to output, zoom range, colour rendering and colour temperature this light truly deserves its name. This is the first LED fixture I would even consider using to illuminate people."
More than 5,000 Martin Professional fixtures in total were deployed at the IAA 2015.