Vaisala Looks for Solutions to Mitigate Ambient Air Pollution in World Challenge Finland 2018 Competition

Jun 13, 2018
Press Releases

Press Release
June 13, 2018

Vaisala Looks for Solutions to Mitigate Ambient Air Pollution in World Challenge Finland 2018 Competition

In the World Challenge Finland 2018, Vaisala is looking for ideas, solutions and applications that provide new tools for mitigation of ambient air pollution based on combining satellite observations, high-resolution in situ data from ground level measurement networks, and advanced air quality modeling. The competition is organized by Digital Forum Finland and Ultrahack. NASA and the European Space Agency provide a virtual globe platform, Web WorldWind and expert advice for the competitors.

The World Challenge is, literally, a challenge to the world - and an opportunity for students, academia and industry to deliver innovative solutions for world peace, health, ecology, education and sustainability in the spirit of the United Nations (UN), ESA and NASA mottos 'for the benefit of all'. The purpose of the competition is to develop applications that are able to improve the quality of life on our planet based on open satellite data.

Urban air pollution poses a significant threat to human health and the quality of life of millions of people worldwide. Being able to detect emission sources accurately and combining that with thorough understanding of local weather enables high spatial resolution air quality forecasts to support decision-making and assist in the implementation of preventive actions to reduce emissions.

"When building the application for Vaisala's challenge of mitigating ambient air pollution, the competitors can utilize the Helsinki metropolitan area as a pilot environment. Available data sources include Tropomi instrument onboard the Copernicus Sentinel-5 Precursor satellite as well as Finnish Meteorological Institute's ENFUSER data modelling tool that combines ground level air quality observations and information about the emission sources as a real-time, street level air quality map. Also local meteorological observations are available through the Finnish Meteorological Institute's open data service online," says John Liljelund, Head of Air Quality at Vaisala.

"The business potential from the satellite observation data creates a huge potential for Finland's competitiveness. A prerequisite for building a credible domestic ecosystem around space activities is that we are able to get the best companies and experts to join in. What we learned from the challenge last year was that this kind of a format makes it a lot easier for talented developers to try out their skills at using satellite data and participate in space activities," says Juhani Kivikangas, CEO of Digital Forum Finland.

Competitor candidates can submit their project proposals via the World Challenge Finland 2018 website by August 3. The World Challenge Board will make a decision on the finalists who will participate in the finals week in Finland during August 27-30.

More information for media:

Tarja Österberg
Communications Manager, Weather and Environment, Vaisala
Tel. +358 50 487 1974, [email protected]

Vaisala is a global leader in environmental and industrial measurement. Building on over 80 years of experience, Vaisala provides observations for a better world. We are a reliable partner for customers around the world, offering a comprehensive range of innovative observation and measurement products and services. Headquartered in Finland, Vaisala employs approximately 1,600 professionals worldwide and is listed on the Nasdaq Helsinki stock exchange.