The CHARM ECSEL JU project coordinated by Valmet aims to develop industrial IoT solutions with an improved tolerance towards harsh industrial surroundings. Digitalisation of the European manufacturing industries is the key to their continuous renewal and competitiveness. Harsh environmental conditions in manufacturing processes and end user environment may slow down the opportunities brought by IoT (Internet of Things) and AI (Artificial Intelligence). The CHARM project is set to solve this challenge.
Business Finland launched a competition in early 2020 for leading companies (so called Veturi companies) with international operations to challenge them to solve significant future problems and increase their research, development and innovation investments in Finland. Four leading companies with three projects were announced as the winners of the competition. Nokia, one of the four winning companies will launch a project called “Unlocking Industrial 5G” which allows the company to innovate new products, services and solutions in Finland and develop and commercialise them together with the companies in the local ecosystem.
Spinverse supports Fortum and Metsä Group in the launch of a joint EUR 50 million circular bioeconomy programme
Spinverse customers Fortum and Metsä Group join forces with Business Finland to create a world-class R&D programme with pulp fibre from renewable and sustainable sources as its node. The 4-year joint R&D programme, called ExpandFibre, aims to develop ground-breaking technologies and smart business concepts that are required to convert straw and wood pulp fibre into novel bioproducts, such as textile fibres. The R&D programme has been granted EUR 20 million from Business Finland.
In the midst of the pandemic, Spinverse welcomed several new colleagues onboard. Some of them started as permanent employees and some joined us for the summer. Between April and early June, we have onboarded a total of nine new colleagues at Spinverse with little or no face-to-face contact. How did it go?
The European Commission has announced a remarkable investment programme worth 10 B€ or more, focusing on highly innovative, mature technologies and big flagship projects that aim to bring significant emission reductions in Europe. We asked Risto Savolainen, our Vice President for the Sustainable Industries business unit, to shed more light into this topic.
Business Finland held an interesting webinar on EU funding recently and we collected some key messages for you in two parts. In this second part, we summarise what our Principal Consultant Eeva Viinikka shared regarding practical matters on how to get started with building the consortium and EU funding proposal. She knows what she is talking about: Eeva has supported our clients with EU applications at Spinverse for over six years and helped them secure funding worth millions of euros.
There is a multitude of opportunities in EU funding instruments for sustainable industries who are ready to reinvent and renew their business practices. Applying for EU funding is a long and competitive process but doing your homework will increase your company’s chances to succeed and reap the benefits of European collaboration for years to come. In this first part, we collected some key messages from a recent Business Finland webinar on European Union funding and collaboration.
Nokia and its partners are targeting the global smart city markets, worth tens of billions of euros. The LuxTurrim5G ecosystem coordinated by Spinverse has just completed a one-of-a-kind piloting environment that boosts the development of new data-driven services for cities both in Finland and abroad. It covers the route from Nokia HQ Campus in Espoo, Finland, to the nearby Kera railway station. Comprising of 19 smart poles with the latest 5G technology and altogether 250 interconnected devices, it brings super-fast connectivity and extensive sensor network available for practical piloting of digital smart city services.
The LuxTurrim5G project has been progressing systematically from multi-disciplinary research to practice. The 5G smart pole concept does not only boast a 5G base station integrated into a light pole but also weather and air quality sensors, video cameras, displays, an electric vehicle charging point and other devices. The concept has now reached its piloting phase for practical applications. The extensive pilot network of 19 smart poles has just been completed in Espoo, covering areas at Nokia’s Espoo Campus and extending to the nearby Kera railway station. The smart poles, using the so called millimetre wave 5G technology, bring high-speed 5G connectivity and an extensive network of sensors within the reach of the users.
”This is a globally unique smart city pilot where a high-speed and low latency 5G network, an extensive sensor network and a data platform bring novel services to the city, its people and community,” says Pekka Wainio, Project Manager, Nokia Bell Labs.
”Local data collected by the various devices, cameras and sensors within the network can be used to produce a multitude of local services through the open interfaces of the data platform. We have received wide interest on how the surveillance cameras and radar devices can be utilised in overall security surveillance, traffic and road quality monitoring, for remote control of self-driving vehicles and in other transport and logistics services,” Wainio continues.
Joni Turunen, Project Director at Spinverse says: ”This is a unique opportunity for partners of the consortium to get access to a test platform where they can pilot new services utilizing high-capacity and fast 5G connectivity. Our pilot network includes three 26 GHz base stations by Nokia, 50 WiFi (60 GHz) devices, 75 video cameras, 49 different sensors monitoring air quality, weather, temperature and CO2 levels by Vaisala and others, nine radar devices (six traffic radars and three lidars), seven information screens, and a drone charging and landing station at the top of the pole (by Rumble Tools). What is more, all the devices are connected to a single data platform.”
From light pole to smart pole
The LuxTurrim5G smart pole is not a light pole, but completely new element forming an essential part of the key infrastructure of a smart city. The recently implemented smart pole version already serves as a pre-commercial pilot product which helps to design the actual smart pole product family. Tehomet Oy and Orbis Oy have been mainly responsible for the design and manufacturing of the pilot poles.
”This is the first large-scale smart pole pilot in Finland, and a globally significant project. The shift from traditional light poles to smart poles is a natural, but also a challenging task where every partners’ role matters. Currently we are already working with the next generation of smart poles and focusing on designing and productising a complete product family. Smart poles hold huge potential for global markets,” says Sami Huuskonen, Design Manager at Tehomet Oy.
Digital services for sustainability and smoother living
Espoo is going to transform the Kera area to a smart and urban district with at least 14,000 residents and 10,000 jobs in near future. Kera will become a showcase of sustainable urban development and an international reference case, where the city works together with its partners to create novel, clean and smart solutions to enhance the smoother living of its people. The future Kera will be a significant piloting ground for new solutions, paving the way to larger international projects. The role of Espoo as a pioneer of sustainable development appointed by the United Nations also promotes this approach. The LuxTurrim5G ecosystem and the new pilot environment is in key role in this development.
“Completing the Kera route pilot infra is an important milestone for the LuxTurrim5G ecosystem and a prime example of our intensive co-creation that brings results, even in these exceptional times. Now we are excited to move to practical piloting of different service concepts in the actual live environment, and welcome also new partners to exploit this unique testbed with us”, says Markku Heino, Ecosystem Leader from Spinverse.
The smart pole network will form the digital backbone of a smart city by providing high-speed connectivity and a versatile sensor network to collect a wide variety of relevant on-line data e.g. on environment, weather, traffic flows, public safety, usage of energy to be used by the city and companies for specific needs and to create holistic situational awareness. Cities have also big amounts of own data which often is not widely utilized.
The project has already been developing a data platform that is capable of processing large masses of data from various sources in a reliable and efficient manner. All this is important for building new data-driven services for the city needs. This lays the foundations to the development of the Kera area and helps us to validate our solutions for scale-up in international projects. Through this Espoo pilot, the LuxTurrim5G consortium shares an ambitious target to expand to global smart city markets, worth tens of billions of euros.
Spinverse coordinates the LuxTurrim5G ecosystem efforts with a team of three seasoned experts. Dr. Markku Heino as the Ecosystem Leader, and the two projects have dedicated Project Managers: Dr. Pekka Torvinen for the Neutral Host Pilot project and Project Director Joni Turunen for the LuxTurrim5G+.
Press release in full
White paper , Building the digital backbone for a smart city, May 25, 2020
On this video, you can hear more what Markku Heino, Juha Salmelin and Tommi Uitto from Nokia, Jukka Mäkelä from City of Espoo say about the LuxTurrim5G ecosystem:
Partners of the LuxTurrim5G ecosystem:
Nokia Bell Labs, Nokia, Premix, Teleste, Vaisala, Indagon, Rumble Tools, Orbis, Tehomet, Destia, Sitowise, Caruna, A-Insinöörit, Link Design & Development, Vedia, Agora Networks, Sensible 4, City of Espoo, Finnish Transport and Communications Agency (Traficom), VTT Technical Research Centre of Finland Ltd., Aalto University, University of Helsinki, Tampere University and Spinverse (coordinator of the ecosystem).
The project is funded by the participating companies and Business Finland.
Despite the global crisis or perhaps because of it, this is a perfect time to innovate, renew and collaborate. Why is that? We talked to our experts Laura Koponen and Patrick Halford to get an overview of how these times of uncertainty could actually benefit companies developing solutions in health, well-being and sustainability.
Do you want to deepen your knowledge and understanding on EU funding and co-operation? To continue their introductory-level webinar Business Finland held earlier this year, they are now arranging a webinar delving a bit deeper into the topic and opportunities for companies and other organisations in the field of sustainable manufacturing. The webinar takes place on 27th May, 2020 at 12.15-16.30 (UTC +03:00).
The global outbreak of the COVID-19 virus closed schools worldwide and forced educators to discover distance learning solutions to keep up with the school curriculums. In March, a Finnish innovation consulting company Spinverse sponsored Koulu.me website to showcase Finnish edtech companies that offer free access to their solutions for the duration of the crisis. The campaign has been warmly welcomed by the participating companies, educators and educational organisations around the globe.
LuxTurrim5G ecosystem led by Spinverse and Nokia has recently gained outstanding traction by being awarded with honors in the Traficom 5G Innovation Competition. LuxTurrim5G is an intensive innovation ecosystem of 26 partners working closely together to tackle the critical challenges of urbanization through building the digital backbone for a smart city, which enables a multitude of necessary digital services.
“As the environment gets a breath of fresh air and the planet vibrates less from the world’s greatest unplanned experiment in physical movement, the internet is humming with activity that is accelerating the deployment of exponential technologies to solve critical challenges,” says Patrick Halford, Vice President for Key Digital Technologies at Spinverse. Here are some of his insights on converging business models.
European Working Group of Innovation Consultants (EWGIC) brings together innovation experts to exchange experience and best practice and promote professional development in EU research, development and innovation projects. Marie Latour, Pekka Koponen and Xavier Aubry are members of EWGIC and wrote an important plea to draw attention to the current situation, where COVID-19 crisis has led private investment in pre-market, high-risk start-ups dry up overnight. With no cash flow, the start-ups need support to stay afloat. The EIC Accelerator could be used to help them.
We cannot allow the current COVID-19 crisis stop innovation - let's carry on regardless! However, identifying the right funding and partners for innovations can be challenging with the increasing number of multi-disciplinary EU calls. There are still ways to navigate through the funding application jungle. To help you get started, we are arranging a webinar where we tell you about upcoming EU funding opportunities for sustainable industries and how you can find the right funding instruments using Spinbase.
Join our Spinbase webinar on May 5th, 2020 at 15.30-16.30 (Helsinki, UTC+3, EEST) to learn new ways to find EU funding opportunities and partners!
Technical Research Center (VTT) experts in the European Commission Programmes team are specialised in scouting for suitable EU-funded calls to find funding for the VTT research projects. Isabel Pinto Seppä has worked on the challenging task to identify the suitable calls for VTT. She shares her experiences with Spinbase tool which she has found very helpful in fulfilling her tasks.
The winners of the CTO of the Year 2020 in Finland are Jani Vilenius of Sandvik and Aki Mäkivirta of Genelec
This year, the jury consisting of leading Finnish technology influencers chose Sandvik’s Director for Research and Technology Development Jani Vilenius and Genelec R&D Director Aki Mäkivirta as the winners in the CTOs of the Year 2020 Awards. The award went to those technology leaders who had contributed to their company’s growth or innovativeness over the past year with their impressive work.
Europe is committed to be the first climate-neutral continent in the world and to reach this goal, the European Commission has published an extensive climate program known as the European Green Deal. The aim of this program is to update the central legislation and channel thousand billion euro as guarantees, loans and public venture capital into green technologies, sustainable solutions and new businesses. At best, this roadmap takes European industries as the forerunners in the quest for a greener world.
To support teachers in their important educational work during the coronavirus pandemic, Spinverse launched Koulu.me portal, which showcases close to thirty Finnish edtech companies. These companies currently offer their apps free of charge to schools and other educational institutions worldwide. The campaign has been warmly welcomed by teachers who are currently struggling with many challenges in these exceptional times.
Finnish edtech companies unite to offer free access to distance learning apps for coronavirus-stricken schools
The ongoing coronavirus outbreak is closing schools worldwide and confines teachers and students at their homes for weeks. This challenging situation prompted a group of Finnish edtech companies to reach out a helping hand and provide free access to some of their pedagogical solutions well suited for distance learning.