8 March 2017

Finland is one of the foremost experts in matters Arctic. Finland is the only country in the world in which all ports freeze during the winter. Icebreaker Sampo is ploughing through thick ice in the Bay of Bothnia. Standing in front of Sampo are the Dudesons, competing in which one of them will let the icebreaker closest before running away.

“It was fantastic to be able to shoot on the icebreaker, to meet it and feel its incredible power from close range when standing on the ice. I believe this video will viewed by a great number of people internationally owing to its uniqueness,” says Jarno Laasala, one of the Dudesons.

60% of the world’s icebreakers have been built and 80% designed in Finland.

“Safe and economical navigation in the ice requires a lot of expertise and up-to-date information on the prevailing conditions. New sensors and intelligence are added to icebreakers continually, providing information about the ice situation, the weather and choice of route. However, icebreakers will not be the first autonomous vessels in the world. Areas have been chosen in Finland for the testing of roboticised ships, vehicles and aircraft, enabling development in extremely varying conditions,” says Piia Moilanen, head of the Arctic Seas programme at Tekes.

Arctic conditions in cold test laboratory

The Dudesons competed in the episode published on Sunday, 5 March in their tolerance to cold temperatures also in laboratory conditions. The Finnish Institute of Occupational Health has been working on well-being at work in the Arctic and northern conditions for a long time. They have in Oulu an internationally unique cold test laboratory, also enabling field measurements.

“The cold test laboratory is used, for example, to test protective clothing and human operating capacity under extreme conditions, with machines to regulate the temperature and wind speed. We can safely say that we have the best expertise in extremely low temperatures and in working under such conditions. We cooperate with, for example, the Defence Forces, businesses having to work under cold conditions, and protective gear manufacturers. We have solid international cooperation with the other Nordic countries, Canada, the USA and Russia,” says Hannu Rintamäki, a research professor at the Finnish Institute of Occupational Health.

An ecosystem of autonomous maritime transport under construction

Tekes is taking part in building a maritime industry vision, with the objective of making Finland the world’s leading provider of intelligent and sustainable cutting-end technology maritime solutions by 2025. Autonomous maritime transport and maritime expertise will be Finland’s next export products. Finland is a forerunner in the development of autonomous maritime transport, something which international players have also realised.
Rolls-Royce is developing the world’s first unmanned maritime products, services and ecosystems in Finland. The test area off Rauma in southwestern Finland and the new ecosystem will bring together global forerunners and agile ICT start-ups. Autonomous maritime transport is created together, and partners are sought from Europe and the other Nordic countries.

Further information

Tomi Korhonen, Director of Marketing and Communications, tomi.korhonen(a)tekes.fi, +358 50 4499575
Miia Linnusmaa, Communications Manager, miia.linnusmaa(a)tekes.fi +358 50 55 77958

The Dudesons

Famous for their extreme pranks, stunts and TV shows, the Dudesons have become an international entertainment phenomenon thanks to their unrelenting attitude and bold approach. Their TV shows have been shown in more than 150 countries and their YouTube channel has more than 2.8 million subscribers. The Dudesons’ activities are based on strong shared values, including friendship, courage and authenticity. They are very much engaged in campaigning against bullying at school and their happy-go-lucky attitude creates positive anarchy. Their achievements and attitude were even recognised by the previous US government, with Jukka Hilden of the Dudesons being invited to the White House by President Barack Obama in early 2017.