Martti Tiuri – visionary and expert in technology
Professor Emeritus Antti Räisänen:
Martti Tiuri 1925–2016 – visionary and expert in technology
Professor Martti Tiuri served as a professor of radio engineering at the Helsinki University of Technology from 1962–1989 and as a member of parliament from 1983–2003. He had an unusually extensive career as a teacher, researcher and societal influencer. He was forward thinking and future-oriented, often involved in initiating new things and in his role as professor of radio engineering at the Helsinki University of Technology, helped to create and shape both the technologies and the competencies we utilise in the information society.
As a radio engineer and researcher, he played a part in launching television operations in Finland and produced notable contributions to many areas of radio science and engineering, in radio astronomy and remote sensing as well as the research and development of antennas and the microwave antennas required in industrial automation. Measurement of dielectric properties of snow had his special attention. As a politician he created visions for the future, spoke in favour of environmental issues and advocated on behalf of the information society.
Tiuri was one of the five first people appointed research professor at the Academy of Finland, serving in the position from 1970–1975. During this time, the millimetre-wave radio telescope of Metsähovi, the so-called great pumpkin, was built for space research.
Perhaps the most significant effort of Tiuri's period as a professor, particularly early on, was his untiring demand for establishing professorships in electronics and communications engineering. This was indeed done at the Helsinki University of Technology, enabling Finland's position as a trailblazer in the current era of information technology.