A short 15-minute drive east of Oslo, near the town of Lørenskog, is SNØ (SNOW), Norway’s latest indoor winter sports attraction. Taking up an entire hillside, the newly opened year-round ski center has been developed on a truly jaw-dropping scale.
Under one roof is a 36,000 m² (387,500 ft²) snow area that includes a 2 km (1.24 mi) cross-country trail and three 500 m (1,640 ft) slalom slopes. Lighting this gigantic facility was a major feat.
The entire structure is a marvel of modern technology. When the mercury rises outside, skiers and snowboarders enjoy a chilly -3 °C (27 °F), with indoor snow cannons providing the right amount of snow to create that authentic alpine experience. Not surprisingly, the cold yet dry indoor climate places great demands on the lighting.
Connected LED lighting was the natural choice – a no-brainer given the near absence of heat from the lamps combined with low electricity use, controllability and their long low-maintenance lifetime. Given that the windowless facility is nearly constantly lit, getting the lighting right was critical.
Light designer, Thea Collett, of the Light Bureau summed up the challenge. “Of course, there were many challenges associated with lighting such a large complex. One is that the lights must withstand the challenging climate in the hall. They needed to be energy efficient, without radiating heat as the climate must be kept at a constant, low temperature.”
Collett also cited “functionality” and “durability” as important factors along with SNØ’s goal to be the most environmentally friendly indoor winter sports facility.
Signify provided both the white, functional basic lighting and the dynamic and vibrant effect lighting. According to Tord Christensen, Country Manager at Signify in Norway, “Our advanced luminaires, light control and ability to distribute data over long distances made us a natural partner.”
The lighting is controlled using the Interact Sports connected lighting system (Dynalite and Pharos) through a simple dashboard configured specifically for recreational sports. This enables a controller to manage everything from the daylight-like functional white lighting to colorful, imaginative snowscapes.
Fine control of the Color Kinetics ReachElite RGBW Powercore luminaires can simulate the arctic blue of moonlit winter nights, providing the perfect setting for a cross-country night trail. One hundred ReachElite luminaires were used for the effect.
“SNØ can recreate everything from high sun to moonlight, northern lights, or even a Saturday night disco,” says Christensen. “What we’ve done is to provide it with the flexibility to meet virtually any customer need, while keeping the center’s carbon footprint to a minimum.”