Preparing for rolling blackouts at the Otaniemi campus

As a result of the global energy crisis, Finland is also preparing for regionally rotating power outages or rolling blackouts. We aim to communicate about possible power outages in advance. The probability of an interruption depends on the weather and electricity production
Image: Anni Kääriä / Aalto University

A shortage of electricity means that electricity production and imports are not sufficient to cover electricity consumption. As a result of the global energy crisis, Finland is preparing for rolling blackouts.

Electricity at the Otaniemi campus comes from the electricity distribution company Caruna. Aalto University is not a national operator critical to the security of supply, so if there is a potential power shortage, there may also be rolling blackouts on the Otaniemi campus. Everyone can help prevent electricity shortages by reducing their own electricity consumption.

The buildings in Otaniemi are divided into interruption areas of electricity distribution, according to which any rolling blackouts will probably last for two hours at a time. Caruna will introduce interruption areas in the event of power cuts in Otaniemi. After the power cut, the electricity will be switched on for at least the following two hours. A power outage covering the entire Otaniemi area is unlikely. 

Systematic preparedness for power outages

During a power outage, we recommend that you leave the building, as occupational safety in the building cannot then be guaranteed. You can exit the buildings, but you cannot get back inside. After the blackout, you can return to the building again. 

The campus's wireless and fixed network connections are not available during a power outage. Mobile network connections may also be disrupted. However, the campus servers run on backup power, so, for example, Aalto's databases can be accessed remotely. 

The controlled shutdown or protection of research equipment in the event of an imminent blackout is carried out in accordance with pre-prepared plans. The instructions will be updated as necessary.

Separate guidelines are followed for teaching and evaluations. More information on the arrangements for teaching will be provided later.

The heating of buildings is interrupted, but the buildings do not have time to cool down significantly during a two-hour break.

Advance warning about the power outage when possible 

Caruna will endeavour to provide advance notification of the upcoming power outage so that it can be communicated to users of the Otaniemi campus in advance by email and on the Aalto website. If necessary, the building managers and facility coordinators at the Otaniemi campus will distribute building-specific instructions related to power outages to building users.

According to Caruna, the worst electricity consumption peaks are in Espoo at 9:00, 17:00 and 22:00, and according to Helen, in Helsinki between 8:00 and 10:00 and 17:00 and 19:00. Possible blackouts can be expected at these times, so reducing electricity consumption is important, especially at these times. The major challenges of electricity distribution begin at temperatures below -15 degrees Celsius.

Frequently asked questions and instructions for actions during a power outage can be found on the Aalto website

If you wish, you can also ask about possible rolling blackouts in the discussion below (requires logging in) or anonymously through the Webropol survey.

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