Finland is the Land of a Thousand lakes, Lapland the region of endless forests. The distance from the southernmost to the northernmost point of Lapland is around 600 kilometers, which is equal to roughly 400 000 people standing hand in hand. This is more than twice the amount of people living in Lapland. The thousands of road miles that cross these endless forest have inspired the to develop solutions for intelligent transportation in Lapland that can be utilized around the world.
How does an intelligent car actually work without a driver? How is it possible to for example park without scratching that shiny new paint? The ever-increasing need of accurate satellite positioning applications sets a puzzle on controlling their errors. The answer comes from Lapland: Sodankylä Geophysical Observatory (SGO) provides precise data that enables more reliable functioning of the GPS systems even in the Arctic.
Sodankylä Geophysical Observatory has been constantly measuring adverse space weather effects on Earth since 1913. New radio methods map the 3D geospace environment with unprecedented accuracy. Collaboration with the new Arctic Space Center of Finnish Meteorological Institute enables access to real-time satellite data, which is highly useful in climate and safety research in the Arctic region. In fact, the environmental monitoring instruments at 24 locations cover the whole longitude of Finland, from Svalbard to Antarctic.
Intelligent road analysis
But it is not enough to develop just the cars, also the road surface and structure beneath the wheels matters. In the future, better roads are needed because even the autonomous vehicles will not be driving in the air. Lapland-based operator Roadscanners is specialized in developing tools and services for traffic infrastructure asset management.
The company provides tools and consulting for structural and functional condition monitoring and analysis of roads, railroads, bridges and airports as well as maintenance planning based on the results. Arctic expertise of Roadscanners benefits also customers outside the Arctic region, because at least 50% of traffic infrastructure in industrialized world is exposed to freezing and thawing.
An extensive charging station network
Even an automatic car needs power to run, and to make for example the 600 kilometer road trip from the tip to the toe of Lapland you naturally need to be able to charge your car. But not to worry, again we got you covered: Napapiirin Energia ja Vesi (NEVE), an electric power and water company from the Arctic Circle, maintains an extensive network of electric vehicle charging stations around Lapland.
There are already 16 EV charging stations in the area that enable your environmentally friendly road trip, and more will be opened in the near future. NEVE has also developed a handy mobile application for locating the closest charging station available, so you will not get lost in the uncharted territory of Lapland.