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Santuário Nacional de Aparecida


The Nossa Senhora da Conceição Aparecida Sanctuary, the world’s largest shrine dedicated to Mary, Mother of God, is located in Paraíba Valley, between Rio and São Paulo. A river named Paraíba runs through this valley, which set the stage for emergence of the devotion that unites all of Brazil.

The cornerstone of the New Basilica was laid on September 10, 1946, but actual construction began on November 11, 1955. The first mass on the site was held on September 11, 1946, and the first pilgrims were received on June 21, 1959.

Religious activities in the Sanctuary were finally commenced on October 3, 1982, when the Miraculous Image was transferred from the Former Basilica to the New Basilica.

Today, the Sanctuary is a great evangelization center, entrusted to the apostolic zeal of Redemptorist Missionaries since 1894, responsible for the pastoral and administration, welcoming travelers and pilgrims from all over the country and abroad.

During the month of October - particularly on the 12th, day of Our Lady of Aparecida, people from all corners of Brazil visit the National Sanctuary, a time when the world’s eyes turn to follow the festivities and the great manifestation of faith by the Brazilian people.

The National Sanctuary welcomes millions of visitors every year. In 2014, 12,225,608 people visited the Basilica. With the motto “Truly embracing is also to evangelize”, 33 Redemptorist missionaries, several female religious congregations, more than 800 volunteers and over 1,500 employees work at the Sanctuary.


The basilica’s former sound system used different kinds of loudspeakers, including:

  • Loudspeakers with 10 or 8 transducers built into the masonry.
  • Loudspeakers with 10 speakers overlaying the masonry.
  • Loudspeakers with horns installed on the casing.
  • Analog mixing console.
  • Horns installed on the outside of the sanctuary.

Due to the large size of the sanctuary and its architectural features, it has high wave fall time as an acoustic feature, which characterizes a reverberant environment.

A high reverberation level is detrimental to the sound system because it impairs intelligibility of the reproduced content.

Another important factor to be considered is for the system not to harm the site’s architecture.

The entire system was controlled via a single console, susceptible to failure.

Based on these assumptions, we were able to establish an extremely technological design pattern based on cutting-edge technologies for the sanctuary.


The proposed system is characterized by capture and distribution of audio signals in different environments that make up the Sanctuary’s complex, including the north pulpit, the main temple, the marquee and the mall, in addition to parking areas. There is also an independent system for the stage located in the middle of the mall, which can support musical performances.

To overcome these obstacles, we defined that for the inside of the church the use of column Line Array loudspeaker technology would be most appropriate, which is characterized by allowing a greater range propagated sound. By coupling sound waves from their various specific sources, it is possible for the line array to obtain a practically homogeneous sound pressure level over the distance.

By employing this technology we achieved better projected sound direction, avoiding unwanted reflections that diminish the venue’s reverberation effect, allowing for better intelligibility levels.

Outdoor System - Technical Rooms

These rooms, three in total, will be installed to receive the signals from the control room. Due to the great distances between rooms, they will be transmitted by CobraNet multichannel format fiber optics, which will be received by HP 2915-8G-PoE switches, responsible for conversion to network cables.

A new processor was needed to transmit audio data to amplifiers.

The signals thus reach the Bose ESP-88, located one each room. In these units, ControlSpace CobraNet I/O boards will be installed, allowing the processors to decode the digital signal into analog audio, in addition to processing it.

After this process, the signal is sent to the amplifiers and to the loudspeakers distributed outside.

Stage System

A system needed to be installed on the stage in the middle of the mall that could support the musical performances to come. Distribution of such content will only be necessary at this location, which means that the system can be independent from the rest of the sanctuary, not connected to the fiber optic system like in other areas.

As such, a new mixer needed to be installed to control microphones for voice and instruments to be used in this environment. The Yamaha model 01v96 was specified. It is a compact equipment but with countless audio signal routing and processing possibilities, capable of handling the specific needs of this system.

From the console, the signals go directly to the two PM8500Ns installed on the same rack, which in turn feed into the LT 9402 WR speakers, installed on the central column. Considering that the system aims to play back musical content, speakers needed to be installed to reinforce the bass, which consisted of two Bose MB24s. These are subwoofer type speakers, designed for playing back frequencies between 40 and 280 Hz, recommended for use with LT series speakers.