Join the renewable energy revolution.


On January 17 the Wärtsilä Power-to-X Spark-Up challenge ramped up with four finalists gathering in Helsinki to see which one had the power to make the most compelling pitch and convince the jury.

We received a lot of solid gold applications and it was not easy to choose who to invite to the next round. This time the finalists were more mature companies ready to scale up their businesses, and we’re looking forward to forging some awesome relationships.


Carbon Recycling International (CRI) is the world leader in utilization of carbon dioxide (CO2) to produce synthetic fuels, greener chemicals and products with lower carbon footprint. We produce renewable methanol by combining CO2 with hydrogen from electricity or recycled waste gas. We build and deliver turn-key power to methanol production plants based on our proprietary Emissions-to-Liquids technology and work with partners in the manufacturing and power industries on transformative projects, increasing process efficiency and creating value from waste streams. Our products and technical solutions are environmentally friendly and do not impact the food chain or land use change.

CRI built, owns and operates an industrial scale renewable methanol production plant in Iceland and has been selling renewable methanol to customers in fuel and chemical industries since 2012. CRI implemented the first traceability and sustainability system for synthetic fuels and green chemicals from CO2 and hydrogen. Currently, CRI is designing and building two production plants outside of Iceland, in Germany and Sweden. In European markets CRI sells its green methanol from the Icelandic production plant under the registered trademark Vulcanol®. Founded in 2006 in Reykjavik, Iceland, CRI currently has 40 full-time employees.



Climeworks captures CO2 from ambient air with the world’s first commercial carbon dioxide removal technology.

Our direct air capture (DAC) plants capture CO2 with a patented filter, using mainly low-grade heat as an energy source. Plants are modular, scalable and can be massproduced, enabling deployment on a large scale. Because the plants capture CO2 from air, they can be built anywhere, independently of any existing infrastructure.

The pure air-captured CO2 gas is sold to customers in key markets, including commercial agriculture, food and beverage industries, the energy sector and the automotive industry. Customers utilize this air-captured CO2 in carbonated drinks or to produce carbon-neutral hydrocarbon fuels and materials. Using Climeworks CO2, customers can lower their dependence on fossil energy, thus reducing their greenhouse gas emissions.

Based in Denmark, GreenHydrogen ( is among the global pioneers in the hydrogen field and have – for more than a decade – been offering innovative energy solutions to public and private clients in Denmark, as well as internationally. GreenHydrogen provides advanced electrolysers and hydrogen solutions for renewable energy applications, automotive sector and on-site industry use. Applications range from automotive, industrial, power-to-gas and power-to-power.

GreenHydrogen cooperates with leading industry and technology partners, universities and infrastructure providers, who are leaders and experts in their field of operation. Since 2007 GreenHydrogen has delivered hydrogen solutions and participated in numerous publicly and privately funded renewable energy projects in Denmark and internationally, and is approved for participation in Danish energy projects under EUDP, FORSK-El and Innovation Fund Denmark as well as under the EU’s Horizon Program. In 2017 GreenHydrogen launched a new series of CE approved electrolysers for commercial sales.


As one of the world’s most innovative companies, Sunfire today develops and manufactures systems for renewable industrial gas and fuel production. These substitutes for mineral oil and natural gas, known as e-Gas, e-Fuel or e-Chemicals, replace fossil fuels in existing infrastructures. The solid oxide cells (SOCs) used for the conversion process are also used as generators to provide electricity and heat.

Sunfire’s vision is to make regenerative energy from sources such as wind farms, hydropower plants and photovoltaic systems available wherever and whenever it is needed — not just when the wind is blowing, the waves are crashing or the sun is shining.

The key component is the steam electrolyser, based on solid oxide cell technology and able to break water into its constituent parts not only from its liquid but also from its gaseous form (i.e. steam). The main benefit of steam electrolysis is that the enthalpy of vaporisation can be achieved without the use of expensive electrical energy. Indeed, recycling waste heat such as that generated by industrial processes makes it possible to increase the efficiency of the steam electrolyser to over 80 percent.

The energy landscape is witnessing a renewable energy revolution.

Wärtsilä envisions a 100% renewable energy future. We are leading the renewable energy transition as the Energy System Integrator – we understand, design, build and serve optimal power systems for future generations.

Technologies are cheap. It makes financial sense to get to a 100% renewable world. When we go through this path over the next generation, the world will be a better place.

– Matti Rautkivi, Wärtsilä Energy Business

What we are looking for

Wärtsilä is determined to lead the way to provide power systems based on a 100% renewable energy for our customers. A 100% renewable power system will look different than the power systems we have today. The renewable energy generation is driven by the weather and sometimes there is too much electricity available. Electricity can be stored, or it can be used in other processes. Power-to-X process is all about this. Excess renewable energy can be seen as raw material for other commodities such as gas, fuel and water. Power-to-X is also considered to be a key enabling technology for the survival of humankind. We are creating something great here! Therefore, Wärtsilä is on the lookout for partners to rise to the challenge and have exquisite solutions in the area of Power-to-Gas, Power-to-Fuel and Power-to-Water. The solutions can be related to improved methods in Power-to-X or new ways of doing things.

This is what we envision:

We are especially interested in Power-to-Gas solutions e.g. where electricity is used to split water into hydrogen and oxygen by means of electrolysis, or solutions where we combine hydrogen from an electrolyzer with carbon dioxide and convert the two gases to methane or solutions. We are also looking for Power-to-Fuel solutions to create synthetic fuel or gaseous fuel. Through these Power-to-X processes we could enable new tracks for energy storage, and reconversion pathways that utilise excess electric power, typically during periods where fluctuating renewable energy generation exceeds load.

Things I’d say on our first date

Designing and building power plants for utilities and industry has been our passion for decades. We have already delivered over 4800 power plants ranging from 10 to over 600 MW in 177 countries worldwide.

Our Smart Power Generation power plants are based on multiple internal combustion engines and are able to run on any gaseous or liquid fuels, including biofuels. They provide industry-leading energy efficiency, fuel and operational flexibility, helping to integrate wind and solar power into the grid.

As a leading EPC (engineering, procurement & construction) contractor and lifecycle support provider, we also support our customers with project development, financing and project services according to needs.

We bring the power, you bring the X – and together we’re one step closer to 100% renewable energy future.

Power-to-X is also considered to be a key enabling technology for the survival of humankind.


Prize 50 000€

Mentoring from industry professionals

Co-create & work on a possible future-altering project

Access to laboratory & testing facilities

Front row seats in the energy industry & transition

Access to customers and distribution network


Prize 50 000€

Mentoring from industry professionals

Co-create & work on a possible future-altering project

Access to laboratory & testing facilities

Front row seats in the energy industry & transition

Access to customers and distribution network

/ Timeline

Application period
18 September – 31 October 2018

Startup interviews November 2018

Finalist selection

Collaboration scoping with finalists
November – December 2018

SparkUp Challenge Day
17 January 2019 in Helsinki

Co-creation phase determined with Wärtsilä

Demo day

/ What is SparkUp Challenge?

The first Wärtsilä SparkUp Challenge concept was launched during the 2017 Slush start-up event in Helsinki. The Wärtsilä SparkUp Challenge is based on Wärtsilä’s purpose: “Enabling sustainable societies with smart technology”. The challenge is divided into two cohorts: Smart Marine and Smart Energy. The focus of the challenge is find to start-ups and scale-ups who have new innovations and business ideas for smart marine and energy and to turn these innovations and ideas into collaboration and co-creation projects.

The SparkUp Challenge journey consists among others of an application period, interview rounds, mentoring, a Challenge Day in Helsinki and it may potentially lead to a collaboration and co-creation phase with Wärtsilä. In the Smart Marine SparkUp Challenge we had 11 finalists out of which we chose 2 winners for the collaboration and co-creation phase: KNL Networks and PortCall.

/ We’re here to answer your questions

Suvi Hakala

Startup Scout,
Open Innovation,
Wärtsilä Corporation


Eleonor Hedström

Manager, Business Innovation
Energy Business,
Wärtsilä Corporation


/ To keep the game fair

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