ACS and Broadcast RF, came together for Euro 2020, co- ordinating and supplying live aerials for the tournament on behalf of UEFA across multiple cities in Europe.

Here’s how they did it

Planning for delivery began back in mid-2019 securing 9 aerial teams over Europe with a total crew of just over 30 pilots, experienced camera operators and RF engineers headed up by the ACS and BRF project management team and a dedicated aerial co- ordinator from ACS.

The ACS aerial unit deployed 11 stabilised mounts; a mixture of Shotover F1s and M1s and the GSS 516. All were fitted with a Sony HDC P50 camera and UHD lens together with BRF’s state of the art HEVC RF equipment to deliver the live UHD/HDR aerials. BRF ensured that all stadiums were rigged with their own bespoke reception system (up to 8 way diversity) and rigged on stadium roofs to combat the terrain of the surrounding areas. In addition, all the UHD/HDR helicopter downlinks had bidirectional camera control systems installed.

The aerial teams were there to cover the build up of the match and the team walk outs and returned towards the end of the game to capture the crowd and team’s celebration. Over 300 flying hours were completed during UEFA Euro 2020 all of which ACS then arranged to be offset with climatecare.org.

The project teams faced many challenges along the way including the late change of host city Bilbao to Seville, nearly 900km away and navigating each of the host countries’ air traffic authorities and specific regulations. In addition to this was the restriction around COVID-19 which were in the most part avoided due to the pre-planned use of local crews where possible.

The live aerials weren’t the two companies’ only contribution to this long-awaited tournament. Broadcast RF supplied facilities for the in-stadium RF cameras in London, Rome, Budapest, Bucharest, Baku, Saint Petersburg and Glasgow. Each stadium had 2 x 3G/HDR Steadicam RF systems using ACS P50 cameras and 1 x 3G/SDR Handheld RF system working with the OB companies supplied broadcast camera heads. Each stadium had multiple reception points for in tunnel, match coverage, team arrivals and fan zone coverage.

ACS also completed all the pre-event aerials with Noah Media Group on behalf of UEFA for the tournament deploying multiple UAV and helicopter teams across the host cities to film scenic shots of the stadiums and their home cities.

ACS Sales Director, Matt Coyde, commented, ‘We’re really proud of all the team’s hard work on the Euros during what is proving to be a very busy and challenging Summer. It was a complex project given all the countries and restrictions involved but we came together with UEFA to capture those dramatic shots that set the scene for the spectacle of the tournament.’

Chris Brandrick, Commercial Director at BRF added, ‘It’s always a privilege to play a part in this huge delivery and our teams really thrive on the technical challenges events such as these bring us.’

 

Jon Creamer

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