Kai Souchon-Parow

Graduate Millimetre Wave Engineer (RAL Space)

"Working at STFC is challenging and interesting – every day we are pushing the edges of research and development."

BSc and MSc Electronics Engineering,RWTH Aachen University, Germany

Why did you join STFC?

I joined looking for a job in high-frequency electronics for use in space, where the millimetre-wave group had a strong and challenging background. I was aware of RAL due to high profile involvement in space missions, namely the UrtheCast cameras and others.

What was the recruitment process like?

Relaxed – standard content & easy online procedure for the application, fixed and published times for the assessment centre (very good!). The assessment centre was fairly relaxed but challenging, and a quick tour of the group including the interviews with the group and HR.

What have you enjoyed most in your first 6 months?

Being immediately involved in challenging programmes within the group. As I like challenges it fitted very well to me.

What do you expect to be working on in the next 6 months?

Depending on the outcome of our bid likely the quasi-optical antenna feed-network for the MWS instrument for the MetOp-SG satellite.

Otherwise the receivers for the MetOp programme, or for the STFC centre for instrumentation (CFI), developing THz detectors.

What is the best single thing that has happened to you since joining STFC as a graduate?

Submitting an £8 million bid to ESA/ADS with my group.

What is it like to work at STFC?

Challenging and interesting – pushing the edges of research and development.

What learning and development opportunities are there for you as a graduate?

Easy access to courses, for example the Southampton Space Systems Engineering course in Summer.

Why do you like working here? What inspires you the most? What benefits do you value the most?

I’m running out of time before a meeting, so just a few points:

  • Good teamwork, very high skilled people around to learn from
  • Facilities and labs are all available

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