Case Study

EXPO 2015 – EN 54-23 certified visual fire alarm devices for "Palazzo Italia"

Fire alarm devices protecting over 21 million visitors.


Infrastructure – building security.

Palazzo Italia was the Italian pavillion at the World Exposition held in Milan, Italy, from May 1 to Oct 31 2015. It constituted the very heart of the Expo site and will remain after the event as the city center for technological innovation.


An engineer from the system integrator involved in the project contacted us directly once he understood the need for EN 54-23 beacon lights. The system integration firm – responsible for the choice of each component in the security system – has chosen our solution after a long technical evaluation and comparison process, considering all the units available in the market.

The customer

Selex ES was a subsidiary of Finmeccanica S.p.A., active in the electronics and information technology business, based in Italy and the UK, and formed in January 2013, following Finmeccanica’s decision to combine its existing SELEX Galileo, SELEX Elsag and SELEX Sistemi Integrati businesses. From 1 January 2016, the activities of Selex ES merged into Finmeccanica’s Electronics, Defence and Security Systems Sector.

In particular, Selex ES’s activities have been organised in three divisions within the sector: Airborne & Space Systems, Land and Naval Defence Electronics and Security and Information Systems.

SELEX was also a major supplier of avionics for the Eurofighter Typhoon.

EXPO 2015

Expo 2015 was a Universal Exposition hosted by Milan, Italy. The area occupied by the Expo 2015 site is located about 15 kilometres (9.3 miles) northwest of Milan in the municipalities of Rho and Pero, and covers an area of 1.1 km2 (0.42 sq miles).

Participants to the Expo include 145 countries, three international organisations, several civil society organisations, several corporations and non-governmental organisations (NGOs). The participants were hosted inside individual or grouped pavilions.

The figures show just how successful the Italy Pavilion has been, with over 2 million people going to the “House of Italian Identity” exhibition in Palazzo Italia – out of the overall 21 million visitors.

The solution: PY X-S-05

PY X-S-05 is a compact 5 J flashing light with an EN 54-23 certified coverage of 11.1 m (6.6 m + 4.5 m) x 8.4 m (4.2 m + 4.2 m) x 6.3 m (front side). Such a big coverage means the system integrator could install 1 unit every 6–8 necessary using competing products. Moreover our customer appreciated the possibility to choose a grey body due to the reduced aesthetical impact.

EN 54-23 certification

Given the nature of the project, the engineer responsible for planning the fire safety system followed the current European standard EN 54-23 by including in the project visual signaling devices alongside acoustic devices.

For many years visual alarm devices, in the form of beacons or combined sounder/beacons, have been part of fire alarm systems.

They assist hearing impaired people or staff working in noisy environments to recognise when a fire alarm has been raised.

This product standard, EN 54-23:2010 has been introduced to standardise the requirements, test methods and performance of VADs and ensure light output is measured in a uniform manner. This standard is mandatory throughout Europe since 1st January 2014.

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Case Study EXPO 2015

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