The companies Widefind and Innan AB have won 600,000 SEK each for their smart solutions in the mining and metal extraction sector at an idea contest organised by the innovation programme SIP STRIM and EIT Rawmaterials North.
Widefind won the money for its solution for positioning equipment and people in a mining environment using a smart local GPS solution. The idea is run by LTU researcher Emil Fresk and Kristoffer Ödmark, and their company is today included in the business incubation centre ESA.
“It feels great to win. We will use the money to develop our concept further. The idea is to create a virtual path using our technology and to teach a robot to follow it. It will involve technical development, production tests and application tests to see if this is something that the market wants,” says Kristoffer Ödmark, founder of Widefind.
Innan AB from Skellefteå won the prize for its development of safety training programs simulating various types of accidents in mining and industrial environments using virtual reality. Behind the concept is founder Nicklas Karlsson.
“We will use the money to develop a system that allows the customer to measure and monitor their own security training. The idea is to create a platform for security officers who can see clear measurements that indicate the quality of safety in the work environment,” says Niklas Karlsson, CEO of Innan AB.
During the day, about 80 participants participated from industry, academy and entrepreneurs. A total of 17 companies pitched their business ideas, ranging from internet of things, digitised mines and drilling technology to environmental engineering solutions.
“This year, there have been super interesting ideas and good pitches. Many companies are here and we expect to bring in many new players to the innovation and mining sector. Now we need to make sure that the ideas become reality so that the sector can become more sustainable, resource efficient and safe,” says Charlotte Andersson, Programme Director for SIP STRIM.
At the event there was also the opportunity to find new partners for both business-to-business projects and collaborations within the framework of calls from SIP STRIM and EIT RawMaterial. A jury of representatives from industry and financiers appointed the winners who are now given the opportunity to implement their ideas with financing from Vinnova via SIP STRIM.
The competition is organised by SIP STRIM, the National strategic innovation programme for the mining and metal producing industry, and EIT Raw Materials North, EU’s major research programme in the mining and metal industry.
Text and photo: Peter Olofsson
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Affärer i Norr: Widefind and Innan won idea contest