F. M. Mahafugur Rahman, author of the best doctoral thesis of 2022

We awarded the best engineering and technology theses of the year

15.11.2022
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News article

The winners are from Aalto University and the University of Eastern Finland. The best doctoral thesis, master’s thesis in engineering or architecture and master’s thesis in mathematics, physics or computer science of 2022 were awarded today in Helsinki.

The best doctoral thesis of the year in the field of engineering or architecture was written by F. M. Mahafugur Rahman from the Department of Electrical Engineering and Automation at the Aalto University School of Electrical Engineering. Rahman's doctoral thesis is entitled "Weak-Grid Tolerant Control Methods for Voltage-Source Converters". Rahman was awarded an honorary certificate and €7,500 by Academic Engineers and Architects in Finland TEK and Tekniska Föreningen i Finland TFiF.

Rahman's doctoral thesis is topical and related to renewable energy: it presents algorithms needed to connect solar and wind power plants to the electricity grid, among other things. Rahman addresses the challenges of grid stability that arise when a significant amount of renewable energy is introduced into the grid.

– I wanted to be a part of the ongoing transition towards fossil-free energy production. I have developed real-time control methods for the grid converter systems. The best part is that the developed control methods operate stably in any grid conditions with good dynamic performance, without the need for case-by-case retuning of the control system, Rahman explains.

The research contributes to the theory of the field, but also offers excellent opportunities for practical applications for companies, for example in relation to solar panels and wind turbines.

Rahman lives in Espoo and currently works as a design engineer at ABB.

In the video, Rahman explains his research and its applications.

Inka Lehtimäki awarded prize for best master’s thesis in engineering or architecture

Inka Lehtimäki, author of the best master’s thesis in engineering or architecture of 2022.
Inka Lehtimäki, author of the best master’s thesis in engineering or architecture of 2022. Photo by Jari Härkönen

TEK and TFiF awarded Inka Lehtimäki the prize for best master’s thesis of the year in engineering or architecture for her thesis "Automatic Video-Based Classification of Convulsive Epileptic and Functional Seizures". Lehtimäki completed her thesis for the Complex Systems major in the Life Science Technologies master's programme at Aalto University. The prize amounts to €5,000.

Lehtimäki's work presents a new video-based method for diagnosing epileptic and functional seizures using machine learning. Lehtimäki's thesis was written in collaboration with Neuro Event Labs and supports the company's product development.

Lehtimäki chose this topic for her thesis because she was interested in health technology and the application of various data analytics methods in the field.

– I am inspired by the practical approach of coding to analytical reasoning. The best thing is when I can apply my own knowledge in a field that interests me and at the same time help others, Lehtimäki says.

Lehtimäki lives in Helsinki and works at Accenture as a senior analyst. Her job involves AI development and technology consulting for healthcare clients.

In the video, Lehtimäki describes her research and its applications.

Elias Vänskä receives award for best master’s thesis in mathematics, physics or computer science

Elias Vänskä, author of the best master’s thesis in mathematics, physics or computer science of 2022.
Elias Vänskä, author of the best master’s thesis in mathematics, physics or computer science of 2022. Photo by Reino Hartikainen

As the best master’s thesis of the year in mathematics, physics or computer science, the Academic Association for Mathematics and Natural Sciences MAL awarded Elias Vänskä's thesis "Proper Orthogonal Decomposition-Based Model Reduction in Bayesian Estimation of Gas Emissions". Vänskä completed his thesis at the University of Eastern Finland. His major subject was Applied Physics, specialising in Computational Physics. The prize amounts to €5,000.

Vänskä's research has significant practical potential for estimating greenhouse gas emissions. In his work, Vänskä developed new estimation methods using laser measurements. He got interested in his topic during a research internship in the summer of 2020 in the Computational Physics and Inverse Problems research group.

– I expressed my interest in working on an environmental application, which led me to be assigned to a greenhouse gas monitoring research project under Professor Aku Seppänen. I found the topic’s current relevance interesting, Vänskä recalls.

Vänskä lives in Kuopio and is further developing the methods for his doctoral thesis. He works at the University of Eastern Finland in the Computational Physics and Inverse Problems research group.

He likes the fact that computational physics methods can be used in practice wherever measurements are made. 

– This gives you the opportunity to work with people from different fields, which broadens your own knowledge and insight into research.

In the video, Vänskä describes his research and its applications.

Thesis awards 2022

TEK and TFiF awarded the doctoral thesis prize for the first time in 1999 to encourage engineering and architecture graduates to pursue further studies. The prize also has the aim of raising the profile of postgraduate studies.

TEK and TFiF have been awarding the best master’s theses in engineering or architecture since 1986. The aim of the award is to encourage study success among students in these fields.

TEK and MAL have been awarding the best master’s theses in mathematics, physics or computer science since 2007. The idea is to highlight the importance of these disciplines in Finnish society.

– Doctoral and master’s theses are the ultimate proof that you have mastered your field. But these award-winning works go beyond that and show that top research is being done in Finnish universities. With these awards, we want to showcase the talent of the future that would not get media coverage otherwise. Congratulations to the winners, says Juhani Nokela, Director of Public Affairs at TEK.

Read more about the awards and last year's winners.