Terveisiä Suomi (Greetings from Finland)

This week saw Linknode embark on an exploratory trade mission to Finland, supported by Scottish Development International (SDI) and Panliska / ScotWindFin (http://www.panliska.com/), accompanied by Stephen Fox.
As a first-time visitor to the country having a local coordinator ensured that we got the maximum benefit, with seven meetings in just three-days total time out of the office.
Travel from Scotland is efficient and easy with SAS flights and other options from FinnAir. An after-lunch departure from Edinburgh on Monday had me in Vaasa (Energy Centre) for an evening meal. And a civilised 7:30am exit from Helsinki brought me to my car at Edinburgh airport before noon on Thursday. Both with one stop via Stockholm.

Why Finland
Finland’s target for 2020 is to meet around 40% of energy consumption with renewables. Although rich in biomass (the net forestry in Finland is growing, despite intensive wood, paper and biomass usage) wind will contribute a significant component. In 2014, total installed capacity is under 500 MW – this will increase five-fold with another 1000 turbines to 2,500 MW.
With so many projects in planning, understanding the visual impact at feasibility and scoping is essential to create engaging and acceptable projects. This is especially true as turbines are developed at typically 140m hub heights to reach above the forest canopy into the wind – a different approach to the UK.
The Finnish Wind Power Association (Suomen Tuulivoimayhdistys ry) is the umbrella organisation for companies in the sector.

Who
A packed three-day agenda had Linknode visiting representatives from the following organisations:

Merinova – http://www.merinova.fi/en/index.html
The collaborative energy centre for new technology and business growth.

Etha Wind- http://www.etha.fi/
Sustainable developers and consultants to the industry.

Ilmatar – http://www.ilmatarwind.fi/en/
A private developer and operator with a significant development pipeline.

Ramboll – http://www.ramboll.fi/
Environmental and energy consultants to the wind industry.

Megatuuli – http://megatuuli.fi/
An innovative developer with a range of projects coming through development.

Poyry – http://www.poyry.fi/
Global consultancy with specialisms in wind planning and project management.

Next Steps
As we continue to add multinational support for projects into VentusAR we can enable broader reach and allow more countries to experience the app. Mobile tablet-based visualisation enables live and inclusive democratisation of data access and communication. It facilitates better decision making and reduces uncertainty and doubt in project development.
We hope to return to Finland soon with active projects and presentations at the Vaasa Wind Exchange, part of Vaasa Energy week.