January 6, 2022 / Nate Swick
INDIANAPOLIS, IN (January 6, 2022) – The 2022 College Football Playoff (CFP) Indianapolis Host Committee, in partnership with Verge Aero, will fly two drone light shows featuring 500 separate drones as part of the fan experience at the 2022 College Football Playoff National Championship.
Verge Aero will produce a five-minute drone show for ESPN on two nights, Saturday, January 8 and Sunday, January 9 to use in its pre-game broadcast. The large-scale aerial imagery will include team helmets, mascots, an Indianapolis skyline, and a count-down clock along with simulated fireworks. The drones are scheduled to take off from Pan Am Plaza at approximately 6:15 p.m. each night.
The second show on Monday, January 10 will be flown in real time and will include what is planned to be the world’s largest scoreboard, displaying the team’s logos and the score of the game inside Lucas Oil Stadium at the end of the 2nd and 3rd quarters.
“The drone light show is an innovative and original concept that has never been seen at a CFP National Championship,” said Susan Baughman, president of the 2022 Indianapolis Host Committee. “Fans can celebrate teams with a scheduled drone show each night and expect to see the world’s largest scoreboard on gameday. These larger-than-life aerial drone displays celebrate our city with unique wow moments."
This one-of-a-kind performance was created by the Indianapolis-based creative agency INNOVATIVE and Verge Aero, a Philadelphia-based company that has flown drone light shows for large events across the world.
The GPS-guided drones will take off from Pan Am Plaza in the heart of Indianapolis’s Mile Square. The show will be performed by choreographed groups of drones that fly in synchronized patterns in the sky over the Indiana Convention Center guided by a certified pilot at a ground control station. An additional 12 volunteers along with Verge Aero staff will handle the drones prior to take off.
“Our robust drones can handle adverse conditions and winds up to 25 mph. Because colder weather impacts battery performance, we have a specialized workflow that lets us perform this complex show even in freezing temperatures. We are excited to deliver a visually exciting show as well as one breaking new technical ground. Our sophisticated communications technology allows the instant display of scores in the air during the game—a world first!,” said Nils Thorjussen, CEO of Verge Aero.
While fans are welcome to watch near the take-off area, vehicle and pedestrian traffic will be held briefly as the drones fly over Capitol Ave. in compliance with FAA regulations. However, fans should be able to see the show from most of the downtown area. Forson anticipates the show will be visible from as far away as the Indianapolis International Airport, depending on weather conditions.
The 2022 College Football Playoff National Championship will take place on Monday, January 10 at 8 p.m. ET. The game will air live on ESPN.
For additional information on the College Football Playoff, including AT&T Playoff Playlist Live!, Allstate Championship Tailgate and the 2022 CFP National Championship, visit collegefootballplayoff.com. Join the social conversation by using the hashtags #CFBPlayoff, #ATTPlayoffPlaylist and #ChampTailgate.
The 2022 College Football Playoff Indianapolis Host Committee works with the CFP to promote, organize, and execute the January 10, 2022, CFP National Championship and its related events in the Indianapolis community. The Indianapolis Host Committee remains committed to a seamless partnership with the CFP and stakeholders to continue making a difference in communities across the state of Indiana after the game and into the future. For more information, visit IndyFootball2022.com.
Verge Aero empowers creative professionals by making it easy to incorporate sophisticated drone shows into entertainment events. A fully integrated hardware and software platform with sophisticated programming and previsualization tools allows designers to go from creative vision to reality in minutes. Verge Aero is fully approved by the FAA to fly drone shows in the US. Learn more at www.Verge.Aero.