⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀The history of the world’s fairs mirrors the development of industrial-technological civilization. As a global powerhouse in electrical engineering, Siemens has been participating regularly in these exhibitions of superlatives ever since 1851. On the occasion of the "Expo 2020" in Dubai, which, due to the pandemic, runs from October 1, 2021 to March 31, 2022, the Siemens Historical Institute has compiled interesting stories and impressive pictures on Siemens’ most important world’s fair exhibits.
Seville 1992 – First separate Siemens pavilion
Not only countries but also international organizations and companies traditionally have pavilions at world’s fairs. Siemens had its own separate pavilion for the first time in its nearly 150-year history at the Seville world’s fair in 1992. The company also supplied the fair’s digital ISDN communications system and participated in Cartuja '93, a project to further develop Andalusia’s economy.
“Evolution of Networks” was the leitmotiv for all of Siemens’ activities at the EXPO. The company’s exhibits were extremely popular – more than half a million people visited the Siemens pavilion.
Hannover 2000 – World partner, technology partner and exhibitor
The first world’s fair to be held in Germany took place in Hannover from June 1 to October 31, 2000. 155 countries and 27 international organizations participate in EXPO 2000. With the motto “We make knowledge work for you”, Siemens showcased its activities as a knowledge-based company whose global workforce is developing the innovative solutions needed to meet the challenges of the 21st century. As the exclusive world partner for information technology, Siemens supplied much of the fair’s IT infrastructure.
The company also made a major contribution to the creation of The 21st Century, a theme park for which a multi-media vision of daily life in Shanghai had been developed in collaboration with urban planners, architects and filmmakers from the Chinese megacity. A top fair attraction, the theme park was visited by roughly 5.3 million people.
Shanghai 2010 – Siemens technology for the first green world’s fair
The motto of the Shanghai world’s fair is “Better City, Better Life”. On opening day alone, 100,000 visitors streamed onto the more than five square kilometer fairgrounds, which were situated on the banks of the Huangpu River. The Expo symbol and one of Siemens’ largest projects at the fair was the China Pavilion. Equipped with energy-saving building technologies and illuminated by thousands of OSRAM light-emitting diodes, the nearly 70-meter-high structure towered against the night sky. Siemens installed 150,000 LEDs on the fairgrounds ‒ light sources that consumed considerably less electricity than conventional incandescent lamps.
But building and lighting systems were only two of the areas in which Siemens delivered sustainable products and solutions for the metropolis of 20 million people. As a global partner to the Shanghai fair, the company also participated in more than 40 projects ‒ landing orders with a total value of around €1 billion.
Milan 2015 – Intelligent technology and monumental art
Expo 2015 took place from May 1 to October 31, 2015 under the motto "Feeding the planet, energy for life." Siemens teamed up with Enel - Italy's largest grid operator - for the exhibition and developed an intelligent, cloud-based energy management system that controlled the power grid on the exhibition grounds. The smart grid connected all the pavilions on the site and monitored, controlled and optimized the energy flows in a small self-sufficient power grid. All network components were controlled in real time at a control center located at Siemens' Milan headquarters.
Siemens enriched the Expo not only in technical, but also in artistic terms: on the Piazza Italia, a central promenade, four monumental sculptures known as "The Wings," designed by the office of American architect Daniel Libeskind on behalf of the company, were set up. After the end of the expo, one sculpture remained in Piazza Italia, while the other three were installed at Siemens' sites in Munich, Erlangen and Berlin.
Dubai 2020 – Digitization on the rise thanks to Siemens technology
At Expo 2020, Siemens is reshaping the future of urban living by creating a blueprint for future smart cities at the Expo site by integrating Siemens technology with a connection to MindSphere, the connection of 137 buildings via a cloud-based energy analysis platform, and the digitalization of buildings in the three thematic districts of mobility, opportunity, and sustainability with the intelligent building management system Desigo CC.
We are proud to be Expo 2020 Dubai’s Premier Partner for Infrastructure Digitalization. Together, we will leverage our leading industrial IoT as a service solution, MindSphere, to shape how we will live in future cities and enable those cities and their citizens to transform the everyday; effectively creating a blueprint for future smart cities around the world.Roland Busch, President and Chief Executive Officer of Siemens AG, 2021
After the Expo is completed in April 2022, Siemens will use the infrastructure of the Expo site and the permanently constructed buildings for its future global logistics headquarters. The Siemens teams responsible for airports, cargo infrastructure and ports will also be based there.