We want to become the global leader in sustainable energy solutions – and to do that, it is crucial that we innovate and stay at the forefront of technology in our industry. If you ask Lars Christian Christensen, Chief Specialist, Energy Management & Storage within Innovation & Concepts, innovation at Vestas is all about increasing the value of our solutions and addressing the needs of an evolving industry and the green transition.
“In general, we look at various pools of value and how we apply innovation to tap into these,” Lars Christian explains. “How do we address certain strategic initiatives or megatrends that can help us achieve our vision of becoming the leader within sustainable energy?”
Vestas houses a set of systematic processes for innovation within our Innovation & Concepts department. These processes are driven by the need to open up new revenue streams and the quest for new products that can perform better in existing and new markets than Vestas’ current products. But Lars Christian points out that innovation is not limited to the Innovation & Concepts department: colleagues innovate on a regular basis across Vestas as a whole.
“We have a great collaboration throughout the entire organisation, including programmes to co-develop concepts with other departments, and specialised competencies that can support other departments in getting new ideas off the ground,” he says. “We’re striving to bring open innovation into the way we do things, and invite everyone with the desire to collaborate to get involved.”
Inspiration from outside
Our endeavours in open innovation extend outside of Vestas as well. Bringing new concepts and products to life quickly is essential in order to remain a technology leader – and according to Lars Christian, that requires looking beyond our own expertise.
“We can only generate so much knowledge within our own four walls: it’s essential to get new insights and possibilities from outside,” he points out. “Time is of the essence in innovation, so it’s crucial to draw inspiration from others.”
Therefore, Vestas collaborates regularly with a range of universities and other external innovation partners, including the Mercedes-Benz EQ Formula E Team. Because our two organisations work on related areas with a vast amount of technological overlaps, there is ample opportunity to build on each other’s expertise. Vestas and the Mercedes-Benz EQ Formula E Team have identified several initial projects that show high potential for quickly generating value on both sides.
These projects will be further defined and developed over the coming months. Initial discussions so far show a promising outlook, a strong spirit of collaboration and a high curiosity to learn from one another.
“We can exchange a lot of technology that can help both our organisations create value,” Lars Christian points out. “From a technical and engineering perspective, this partnership is a gift for both of us.”
Throughout Season Six and beyond, we’ll be sharing more in-depth stories about how Vestas and the Mercedes-Benz EQ Formula E Team are coming together to solve complex challenges, both on and off the track. Sign up for the Formula E newsletter here to stay up to date on Formula E news, articles, races and more.