Research projects 12

  • Head of research Sini Numminen
  • Language n/a

The doctoral research project targets to understand the relevance of frugal and affordable energy innovations in sustainable energy transitions among low-income communities in emerging economies. The target technology is solar micro-grids in India. The various related sustainability challenges are studied as well as the role of distributed energy in the country's energy mix among rural energy users. Key methods include field trials, interviews, data analysis and sustainability and reliability assessments.

Team

The BIOCODE project aims to develop high-value extraction compounds (e.g. protein, oil, waxes, and carotenoids), cellulose and hemicellulose products (nanocelluloses, soluble cellulosic macromolecules, sugars and lactic acid) and lignin based materials (biochar, soil additives, chemicals) from main commercial grain crop residues (corn, rapeseed and wheat co-streams). A sequential fractionation concept based on extraction pre-treatment (fractionation of minor components) followed by hydrothermal destructuration (fractionation of major components) will be developed and integrated with a variety of conversion techniques.

Team

Henrikki Liimatainen, Terhi Suopajärvi, Lothar Driller, Robin White, Gianluca Ottolina, César López

We aim at elucidating how plants acquire and use information about their abiotic and biotic environment. Perception of visible and ultraviolet regions of the daylight spectrum and the acclimation responses triggered by these cues are the main focus of our current research. Understanding cross-acclimtaion mechanisms can be used to develop new environmentally-friendly crop management strategies based on environmental cues, such as the light spectrum and/or temperature, replacing applications of chemical growth regulators and of some pesticides. Another application is enhancement of post-harvest shelf life of cut flowers, and leafy vegetables.

Team

Pedro J. Aphalo, Sari Siipola, Fang Wang, Neha Rai, Yan Yan (HU); Åke Strid (ÖU), Gareth I. Jenkins (GU), Andreas Albert (HZM), Susanne Neugart (IGZ), Otmar Urban (CZG), Victor O. Sadras (SARDI), Tarja Lehto (UEF), Anders Lindfors (FMI).

  • Head of research Sara Lindeman
  • Language n/a

The world needs hands on solutions to wicked problems such as climate change, resource scarcity and poverty, and we need to nd the pathways that enable such solutions to emerge. To maintain competitiveness in the future, Finland needs to improve it’s capacity to innovate and collaborate in new ways, to provide holistic and sustainable solutions to global challenges, both in emerging markets as well as disruptive new approaches to service provision in Europe. New global studies frugal and reverse innovations in complex global systems.

Team

Minna Halme, Teija Lehtonen, Jarkko Levänen, Helena Sandman, Emma Nkonoki, Tatu Lyytinen, Anne Hyvärinen, Sini Numminen, Sini Suomalainen, Marleen Wierenga, Marko Keskinen, Peter Lund, Olli Varis

The two-year project NAMURBAN (Urban Resource Efficiency in Developing Countries) pilot study of Walvis Bay, Namibia is research work of Satakunta University of Applied Sciences (SAMK) from Finland and Namibia University of Science and Technology (NUST), Namibia. The research is aimed at developing a framework for urban resource efficiency utilization in developing countries using Namibia as a pilot country.

Team

Heikki Koivisto, Meri Olenius

  • Head of research Wolfgang Fritzsche
  • Language n/a

The windows developed in this project will prevent the heat from solar radiation from entering buildings, and instead convert that to usable energy. Thus, the need for air conditioning is drastically reduced without compromising daylight illumination. On the other hand, our widows will also increase the use of solar power by integrating the collectors directly into the facades of buildings.

Team

Jussi Toppari, Janne Simonen, Wolfgang Fritzsche, Frank Garwe, Vamsi Komarala, Eshwar Thouti, Johannes Skaar, Christopher Dirdal

  • Head of research Sirkka Heinonen
  • Language n/a

The foresight part of NEO-CARBON ENERGY explores possible futures of a new renewables-based energy production and storage system, which is being developed by VTT Technical Research Centre of Finland, Lappeenranta University of Technology (LUT) and University of Turku – Finland Futures Research Centre (FFRC). This joint research project is one of the strategic research openings of Tekes – The Finnish Funding Agency for Innovation. The foresight work is conducted in the Finland Futures Research Centre. A possibly distributed energy production system of neo-/low-carbon technologies and emerging issues such as prosumerism can drive economic, political, cultural and social changes. Radically new innovations, services and practices could emerge as a result of the third industrial revolution.

Team

Sirkka Heinonen, Juho Ruotsalainen, Joni Karjalainen, Marjukka Parkkinen

  • Head of research Coordinator: Liceth Rebolledo
  • Language n/a

A thorough approach to nanotechnology and advance materials development must take into consideration the international dimension, in terms of R&D, access to information and regulation. International cooperation,including collaboration in research but not limited to this, is an integral part of the Commission’s policy in all areas of the Action Plan. However, despite the fact that international collaboration has been made so far; there is still a challenge of filling knowledge gaps with less industrially advanced nations in order to enhance quality of life and industrial competitiveness in those areas where Nanotechnology has the potential. European industrial players and research organizations seek new collaborative agreements in order to share risks and explore new market opportunities. On the other hand, Latin America has started new nanotechnology development programs in the last ten years. However, according to national agencies, the investment in nanotechnology R+D and the results achieved remains now relatively unpretentious.

Team

From VTT: Maria Lima Toivanen, Kaisu Loikkanen, Mona Arnold, Luiz Carlos Perez, Maria Mäntylä, Heidi Auvinen

The production of hydrogen by solar energy is an attractive technique to realize global renewable energy supply. The photoinduced water splitting into hydrogen and oxygen by the direct use of sunlight is an ideal, renewable method of hydrogen production that integrates solar energy collection and water electrolysis into a single photoelectrode. Although the concept is attractive to produce sustainable fuel, the suitable electrode material (performance, stability and low cost) is yet to be found.

Team

Nagarajan Subramaniyam (Finland), Markku Sopanen (Finland), Rajendra singh (India), Ashutosh Kumar (India)

  • Head of research Matti Latva-aho
  • Language n/a

In this project, we aim at developing a new theory for the new generation of electric power systems, also known as smart grids. Such a technology uses the information and communication technologies to exchange data within the grid, allowing for interactions between its elements as well as the humans who also play an important role. These interactions form a network structure among the diverse system elements based on fixed rules (e.g. physical laws) and adaptive relation rules guided by the available (estimated, filtered and/or processed) information (e.g. human behavior). Therefore, we need to go further than the simple analysis of the technology and thus we should include the human interactions with the power grid to have a proper picture of its dynamics.

Team

Pedro Nardelli, Florian Kühnlenz