The five finalists for the Finnish Engineering Award 2021

Five sustainable solutions – Here are the finalists for the Finnish Engineering Award 2021

6.10.2021
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News article

TEK and TFiF are about to give an award worth 30,000 euros to a significant contribution to engineering or architecture. The finalists take on challenges of energy and food production, make seafaring ships and rock drilling more energy efficient and give touchscreens longer lifespans.

Image: The five finalists. Top row: VTT's two-way electrolyser-fuel cell system, Kuori’s touchscreen technologies and Solar Foods’ growth technology for the protein Solein. Bottom row: ABB’s Azipod® thruster system and Sandvik's RockPulse™ drilling system.

The Finnish Engineering Award honours the experts in the field of technology and their ability to apply their expertise to practice. It highlights the people behind technology. The award, worth 30 000 euros, is given to a person or work group for their tremendous contribution to engineering or architecture. The award is given annually by Academic Engineers and Architects in Finland TEK and Tekniska Föreningen i Finland TFiF. Last year's winner was the team behind the Sensible 4 GACHA self-driving bus.

According to TEK’s CEO Jari Jokinen, Finland’s success and well-being are based on experts and expertise.

– High tech exports go hand in hand with well-being services. There is reason to celebrate engineering work and the field's top talent not only for the value inherent in engineering, but also for how it allows us to educate, treat and nurture. This accolade celebrates everyone involved in this endeavour, Jokinen says.

There is reason to celebrate engineering work and the field's top talent.
- Jari Jokinen

TFiF’s CEO Annika Nylander says that by highlighting successes we help maintain a spark of success for tomorrow.

– We have enough knowhow in Finland to reach for the stars, and the capacity to realise long-term visions and ideas that have been deemed impossible until now, or challenging at the very least. It is also important that we know our own worth and highlight our own achievements. Nobody else will do that work for us Finns, Nylander says.

We have enough knowhow in Finland to reach for the stars.
- Annika Nylander

People could freely submit their candidate for the award over the spring. TEK’s technology committee narrowed the group down to five finalists. The winner will be decided by the boards of TEK and TFiF. The winner will be revealed in November 2021.

Finalists for the Finnish Engineering Award 2021

Finalist 1: ABB's Azipod® azimuth thruster system

The Azipod® azimuth thruster system is an innovation in the field of environmental technology. The system can reduce a seafaring vessel's fuel consumption by up to 20 % when compared to traditional thrusters. Azipod® also improves the manoeuvrability of the vessel, which in turn makes it safer. Azipod® is a business of billions of euros for ABB. Azipod was also a finalist of the competition in 2020.

  • Nominees: B.Sc. Jukka Varis, M.Sc. Antti Ruohonen, M.Sc. Juha Koskela, M.Sc. eMBA Antti Lehtelä, B.Sc. Marcus Högblom, M.Sc. Sakari Sorsimo and B.Sc. Tommi Lempiäinen

Finalist 2: Kuori touchscreen technologies

Kuori specialises in large display and touchscreen solutions that can withstand frost, heat, water and dust. Their solutions can be used indoors or outdoors – in digital outdoor marketing, for example. The modular structure of Kuori's products enables customization and effective mass production. A broken screen does not need to be replaced entirely: replacing the damaged module is enough. This increases the product's lifespan and reduces the amount of waste and the need for components.

  • Nominees: MBA, technology student Jarkko Jokelainen, M.Sc., Huiyang Yu, BBA Maria Jokelainen and technology student Janne Nordström.

Finalist 3: Sandvik’s RockPulse™ drilling system

Sandvik RockPulse™ is a drilling and measurement system. It provides instantaneous information on drilling conditions and equipment status with no-contact measurements. RockPulse optimises the cost-efficiency and energy consumption of drilling operations. It also helps improve the safety of mining. The digital tool is used in mines and in quarrying work. RockPulse was also a finalist in 2020.

  • Nominees: D.Sc. Tuomo Pirinen, M.Sc. Noora Kalevo, M.Sc. Pasi Hämäläinen, M.Sc. Timo Setälä, M.Sc. Vesa Uitto and M.Sc. Jarno Viitaniemi

Finalist 4: Solar Foods’ growth technology for the protein Solein

Solar Foods’ technology produces Solein, an edible protein, from air and electricity with the help of microbes. The food industry could use the vegan protein powder as an ingredient. The start-up company is currently at the demo stage and means to grow and become an established part of sustainable food production in the future. Solar Foods’ technology can be used to produce food almost anywhere – even in space!

  • Nominees: D.Sc.  Pasi Vainikka, D.Sc.  Juha-Pekka Pitkänen, B.Eng. Sami Holmström and D.Sc.  Petri Tervasmäki.

Finalist 5: VTT’s two-way electrolyser-fuel cell system

VTT’s two way high-temperature electrolyser-fuel cell system is a response to the challenges of emission-free energy production. VTT, or the Technical Research Centre of Finland, has constructed a “mini power plant” that can both produce eco-friendly green hydrogen and balance the local electricity grid by producing electricity. Larger scale power plants could be built in a modular fashion based on the system demonstrated in the mini plant. What makes solid oxide technology special is its higher achievable efficiency when compared to competing electrolyser technologies. Goals of carbon neutrality create global demand for green hydrogen.

  • Nominees: D.Sc. Ville Saarinen, M.Sc. Mikko Kotisaari, M.Sc. Jari Pennanen, M.Sc. Valtteri Pulkkinen, D.Sc. Olli Himanen, PhD Jari Kiviaho, D.Sc. Olivier Thomann and M.Sc. Aki Nieminen.

The Finnish Engineering Award

  • The Finnish Engineering Award has been awarded since the year 1980.
  • The award, worth 30 000 euros, is given to a person or work group for their tremendous contribution to engineering or architecture.
  • The award is given annually by Academic Engineers and Architects in Finland TEK and Tekniska Föreningen i Finland TFiF.
  • The winner of the Finnish Engineering Award 2021 will be revealed in November.