The new lighting system of the Basilica of St Francis and the Sacred Convent of Assisi will be inaugurated on the occasion of the Day of Reflection, Dialogue and Prayer for Peace and Justice in the World promoted by Pope Benedict XVI. The new system significantly reduces energy consumption, increasing respect for the environment and improved illumination.
Thanks to Eni, along with other companies, the sponsor of the initiative, it has been possible to modernise and markedly improve the existing 40-year-old system. The new system significantly enhances the appearance of the monuments and the various restoration work that the Sacred Convent of St Francis has carried out - such as the porch of the Lower Basilica, the entrances to both the St Francis basilicas, lower and upper, and the Tomb of St Francis – with a linear flow of light that highlights previously invisible details.
The significant energy saving comes from the replacement of the old bulbs with new technology alternatives that increase the chromatic range, while reducing the number of watts. The 22 1,000-watt bulbs, that illuminate the outer wall and the Papal zone have been replaced by 250 watt bulbs, with double the light flow. The projectors of the apse, the façade and the bell tower, have gone from 1000 to 150 watts and the 88 new lamps that illuminate the lower courtyard of St Francis have made it possible to reduce consumption from 10560 to 1760 watts.
In the late afternoon, the ceremony, which will be broadcast live on television and in which the Holy Father and all the leaders of the world's religions will participate, will culminate with the switching on of the illumination of the entire complex.