an evening race circuit quite soon. Hella Australia has pioneered an illumination system (not unique to motorsports) that uses reflectors, is shadow free, compatible with TV coverage and fail safe. The company organised a large scale demonstration of the system with Mark Webber and Mick Doohan.
Image linked from http://www.news.com.au, Herald Sun, Webber testing the lights at Calder Park
The system has been submitted for FIA approval. Hella is pushing for the system to be adopted at circuits beyond Albert Park, having invested serious resources (50 engineers, 44 trial units built) in the project after evening/night F1 races became very likely. The Calder Park test arrangement was 500m long with a straight, a fast corner and a slow corner. Hella Australia's system competes directly with others like Musco's. Thomas Plessinger of Hella Australia had this to say:
There are opportunities for other sports. Any application is suitable for our lights, but Formula One is the pinnacle.
This is the power of Formula One. Ask it, suggest it, and people will line up with solutions to what you've wanted. Thus Hella has shed light on what Formula One can really do. Against this backround it is incredible what the FIA isn't asking for in terms of engineering and innovation, but freezing instead. Wanting something doesn't equal drawing everything out of existing resources and depleting them - Formula One has great powers to attract more innovation, more people, more investment and generate more emotional, environmental and, yes, financial wealth.
Yes, such potential can be downright scary. But I do think this is a case in point of how inspiring F1 can be and what such inspiration can generate, especially with well intentioned and informed leadership. A leadership that is openminded and humble in the face of what the humanity can do well.
Lighting system submitted to FIA - link, Autosport
Aussie firm on night racing for Formula One - link, news.au.com, Herald Sun
Hella Australia (no obvious added info) - link