The future is tested in Norrbotten

Green energy supply, unique natural resources, large land surfaces, subarctic climate and specialised expertise make the rest of the world try out future solutions and products in Norrbotten. For more than 50 years, commercial testing activities have attracted global companies to the northern parts of Sweden. It’s overwhelming to know that some of the world’s biggest innovations, future investments and crucial insights may happen around us, right now.

From deep mines to futuristic satellites in outer space
The test operation goes from unique minerals in deep mines to outstanding futuristic satellites in outer space. In between, fits the whole world’s big data and future data center as well as fossil free electrification and battery production. The steel- and mining industry saw the great potential at an early stage and therefore started investing in research and large tests in the area, in collaboration with the University.

birgitta bergvall kåreborn- Testing activities have a lot of advantages as they get the region to take care of its qualities and the University of its research. It helps the University, companies and municipalities to keep working with the latest technology and stimulating challenges which leads to economic growth and development, says Birgitta Bergvall-Kåreborn, principal at LTU.

Sweden shows the rest of the world
SSAB, LKAB and Vattenfall are the latest contributors for important and innovative testing- and research activity.
Today, SSAB releases the most carbon dioxide in the whole country, and together they want to work towards a fossil-free Sweden.The industrial development project the HYBRIT Initiative focuses on solutions for hydrogen-based iron production through direct reduction, where hydrogen is used to separate iron from oxygen, which would give a result of iron and water.

jk bild- HYBRIT has received positive response – locally, nationally and internationally. Our plan is now to run test campaigns to produce fossil-free iron in Luleå from 2020. We hope to reach industrial scale around 2035, says Jesper Kansbod, responsible for public affairs at Hybrit Development.

It’s not a coincidence that SSAB, LKAB and Vattenfall choose to invest in the county. Here is a specialised steel industry with Europe’s most high quality iron ore as the primary resource as well as access to fossil-free electrical power. The strong knowledge combined with Sweden’s unique natural resources make Sweden to a good role model for the rest of the world.

- The initiative is an important contribution for Sweden to reach the goal of becoming a fossil-free country until 2045 – a journey that starts in Norrbotten, says Jesper Kansbod.