The technology group Wärtsilä and Lappeenranta-Lahti University of Technology LUT, a Finnish public university, have signed a research agreement on strategic power system modelling with the aim of understanding and developing paths towards 100% renewable energy systems. The agreement was signed in March.

The scope of the agreement covers collaboration on detailed energy system modelling of the transition taking place with the global energy sector. Under the agreement, LUT University’s solar economy research group will support Wärtsilä’s development work in this field, including providing access to LUT University’s database of power systems data. Wärtsilä has accumulated superior capabilities in the strategic modelling of the industry’s ongoing transition, both at power system and country levels. The work has focused on understanding the value of flexible power assets within power systems, as well as the role of different power generation and storage technologies in achieving electricity systems capable of utilising 100% renewable energy sources.

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The LUT University’s research team, led by solar economy professor Christian Breyer, has carried out world leading research on modelling the energy transition on an hourly level. This research includes not only electricity generation and storage technologies, but also changes in demand by industries, transportation and cities. The basis of the research is to show an economically viable pathway to a carbon neutral global energy system by 2050, with electricity as the major energy carrier. By combining this work with that of Wärtsilä, the research is expected to reach a new, and even higher, level.

“Wärtsilä has a long history of research cooperation with LUT University, with focus in finding solutions for a renewable energy future. The collaboration with their solar economy research group is in line with our vision of a 100% renewable energy system, and it strengthens our understanding on the optimal development paths towards achieving it. The energy sector is changing rapidly, and with this collaboration Wärtsilä as energy system integrator can build the know-how to lead that change,” commented Matti Rautkivi, Director Strategy & Business Development, Wärtsilä Energy Business.

“LUT University is proud to be chosen as Wärtsilä’s partner in this strategic modeling project, and we look forward to working together with them,” commented Juha-Matti Saksa, the rector of LUT University. “This is a new step for our innovative university in its international challenger’s role. Wärtsilä’s global network improves the accuracy of the modelling”.