In January, Wärtsilä and Schneider Electric signed an agreement to collaborate on data centre projects. The objective of the agreement is to work together to open markets for innovative data centre energy optimisation solutions, focusing on hyperscale projects having an electrical load of at least a 10 MW. Wärtsilä will provide the power generation plants, whereas Schneider Electric will focus on energy distribution optimisation.
In April, Wärtsilä announced a partnership with the cyber security company Templar Executives to establish a world-class cyber academy in Singapore. The academy will offer courses designed to support and enhance the collective cyber maturity of the wider shipping community, notably operators and owners. Wärtsilä has also partnered with the Maritime and Port Authority of Singapore to promote maritime innovation and R&D. The partnership covers four different streams: digital acceleration, cyber-physical security, intelligent vessels, and port operations.
In June, Wärtsilä and Hyundai Motor Group signed a technology and commercial partnership contract designed to utilise second-life electric vehicle (EV) batteries for the growing energy storage market. The partnership will target advanced energy storage products and platforms that maximise Hyundai’s second-life EV batteries to be commercialised via Wärtsilä’s existing customer and channel networks throughout 178 countries globally.
In August, Wärtsilä announced that it will build a new centre of research, product development and production, the Smart Technology Hub, in Vaasa, Finland. The hub will be unique in its field, enabling more agile, more efficient testing and product development of solutions for the maritime, oil and gas industries, as well as new energy systems. As a part of the project, Wärtsilä will invest EUR 83 million in modern testing and production technology for the hub. The majority of these costs will materialise in 2020. The total investment in the Smart Technology Hub will be in the region of EUR 200 million, consisting of office and factory buildings, logistics and infrastructure.
In November, Wärtsilä, Finland’s Lappeenranta University of Technology (LUT), and Nebraska Public Power District (NPPD), the largest electricity utility in the state of Nebraska, signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) for the study of the development of a business case for the use of alternative fuels with Wärtsilä generating sets. The aim of the business case is to achieve a technically and commercially viable solution, allowing to proceed with an industrial scale pilot project.
In December, Wärtsilä introduced its Innovation Community Initiative together with Tieto, St1, Fortum and Demos Helsinki, with the aim of accelerating the global energy sector’s transition towards more sustainable energy generation. The community will provide an arena to study, improve, experiment, validate and bring to market new innovations that challenge current energy system paradigms.