“What we have in common with a Formula 1 team is paramount focus and expertise on aerodynamics.”

Jyri Tolonen, Head of Products at Filtrabit gives his perspective on developing cutting-edge technology in industrial dust control.

Jyri Tolonen, Head of Products at Filtrabit

Continuous improvement

”Filtrabit’s industrial air filtration technology leverages the same scientific principles as the aerodynamic design of a Formula 1 race car. We conduct simulations, create multiple test versions, build prototypes, and make incremental modifications to achieve the cleanest airflow—much like the Formula 1 cars strike a balance between downforce for corners and speed for straightaways.

This dynamic R&D side of my work as Head of Products is just one exciting part of my job here at Filtrabit. We are speeding up industrial air filtration solutions to solve one of the major parts of the global climate challenge.

Dust is a problem in every industry and the ramifications are varied. Often, it’s an impediment to achieving some technical solution to a problem that might mitigate huge amounts of emissions. For example, CO2 can be captured in a liquid, but the systems get clogged and stop working unless the gas can be effectively cleaned of dust beforehand. And almost always, it represents a loss of raw material – unless it can be effectively reclaimed, of course.

We are also in the process of developing our technology to filter gases at increasingly higher temperatures, including extremely high temperatures. This capability allows for more efficient recovery of heat energy from high-temperature processes. We will reveal more details later.”

Customer perspective

”We have a cross-functional R&D team, and we are actively engaged in sales, creating, and presenting customer solutions. This work has laid the important groundwork for data collection to support the development of new solutions and products. Filtrabit is scaling up its production and delivery processes, and my focus, the patented high-performance product, is now optimized for serial production. We are working closely with partner companies in engineering, manufacturing, and delivery.

First, we strive to understand the customer’s process and identify the optimal points for dust recovery. In collaboration with our customers, we design, test, and implement various hoods and ducts for different sites. This phase of the process shares many parallels with the work of Formula 1 aerodynamics specialists.

As the equipment is housed in a mobile unit that fits inside a shipping container, we can expedite the delivery process and provide an uninterrupted filtration solution with backup equipment. Similar to a Formula 1 team, we have the flexibility to relocate our equipment and team to new locations.

Dust poses a significant challenge for large industries, and effective solutions have not been widely implemented. Many steel mills date back to the last century, a time when dust removal was not a priority and efficient solutions were not available. We see tremendous growth potential in the steel industry alone. Ensuring occupational health and clean air for everyone to breathe is my personal mission.”

Jyri Tolonen, Head of Products at Filtrabit.

Back to the roots

”In spite of my background as an automation engineer, my career has predominantly focused on commercial electronics and semiconductor products. Prior to my work at Filtrabit, I spent 18 years at Detection Technology. Transitioning from the cleanroom environment of the semiconductor industry to the dusty coking plant of the steel industry was quite a leap.

Now, I have the opportunity to embark on another career in a new industry at the climate tech company Filtrabit, hopefully making a real impact in its interesting scale-up phase.

In a way, I’m following in my father’s footsteps.

My late father, Matti, a Licentiate of Science (Technology) who specialized in process engineering, built his career at the SSAB Raahe steel mill (known as Rautaruukki Oy in those days). He made significant contributions to the research department, and in the 80s and 90s, he played a crucial role in a project for a new coking plant. Later, he contributed to environmental management systems. Visiting the same steel plant and coking plant now feels rather nostalgic. Perhaps it’s in my genes?”

Managing forces

”I have a variety of hobbies. Sailing has been a passion of mine since childhood. Additionally, I enjoy riding both motorcycles and downhill mountain bikes, as well as practicing judo. In the Bay of Bothnia, I also pursue windsurfing, where I am attempting to master the gliding technique on a Formula Windsurfing board.

Come to think of it, a lot of it has to do with both aerodynamics and hydrodynamics.” 


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