Sporting with fire

November 2008 Fire & Safety

Sinteso fire detectors are at the heart of a sporting arena which has won one of Germany’s most significant accolades for fire prevention in buildings.

The Allianz Arena is an ultra-modern stadium which is already being recognised by the global football community as a new Bavarian landmark. Standing at the gates of Munich, the arena is home to FC Bayern Munich and TSV 1860. Affectionately known by the locals as the UFO or Michelin Tyre because of its space age façade, the arena won the award in recognition of its integration of mandatory fire prevention measures with innovative planning.

Siemens Building Technologies was in charge of the technical aspects of the fire prevention programme, with 4600 Sinteso fire detectors ensuring that even the slightest occurrence of smoke or fire is swiftly detected and the alarm raised. In the areas of the stadium accessible to the public, over 600 manual call points can also be used by visitors to raise an alarm. The alarm signals are recorded and processed in nine networked Sigmasys fire alarm control systems. These signals are all routed through the arena’s three system control centres to the control centre of Munich’s fire service. One of the control systems processes only signals from the multistorey car park, one of Europe’s largest, which is attached to the arena. Smoke vents, the airconditioning system and lift control system are also connected to the control and indicating equipment systems by way of complex open-loop controllers.

The project demonstrates Siemens increasingly integrated approach to fire and security, with video surveillance and intruder detection technology also provided. 85 video cameras, including 52 high-speed domes, and five video workstations provide a comprehensive overview of the stadium’s security. Recording of the images from the cameras is via a Siemens Sistore intelligent video codec, providing the data in a format which is suitable for use in court proceedings – an important feature of video surveillance in stadia applications. An intruder detection system with two Sigmasys control centres safeguards the areas of the stadium exposed to the highest levels of risk, including the ticket offices, shops and kiosks which also feature 515 deadlock contacts for door surveillance and 215 panic alarms feeding directly into the police control centre.

The Allianz Arena is referred to by its creators as the ‘stadium of the senses’, standing in the centre of a large green area and appearing thoroughly futuristic. The façade can be lit up in red, white and blue and is constructed from some 2700 lozenge-shaped cushions, making it the largest membrane skin in the world at over 25 000 square metres.

For more information contact Keshin Govender, technology communications consultant: Corporate Communications, Siemens Southern Africa, +27 (0)11 652 2412,,

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