Tuesday, 8th November
Tuesday, 8th November
We areWe are a global leader in high-tech materials for electronics. Our material innovations are used in millions of electronic devices such as printed solar cells. Our next generations of products will make displays 35% more colorul, 40% brighter and more energy-efficient than ever before.
We offerWe offer internships and full-time positions in a start-up environment with a fun group of colleagues.
We are looking forWe are looking for bright students mainly with a background in chemistry, chemical engineering or materials science. Fresh graduates are welcome.
What is your current task at Avantama AG?
Since January 2021 I am employed 100% as a Process Engineer in the production team of Avantama. Together with my coworkers, we are responsible for the upscaling of the R&D production process of our quantum dot materials. On one hand, this means handling up to 30kg barrels of chemicals, processing this amount in sized up chemical reactors and assuring the quality of each process step to the final product. On the other hand, we are further optimizing and investigating the chemical processes to improve the reliability of the final product as well as increasing the yield of every step both with experiments on a large and on a small scale. Being a small company leads to additional responsibilities regarding procurement of chemicals as well maintenance of chemical reactors. Furthermore, I am one of the company paramedics.
How would you describe the working atmosphere at Avantama AG?
Working at Avantama is great. Being a small company, you quickly know everyone and with the open and helpful atmosphere that we have, it is easy to chat or discuss challenges with anyone up to the CEO. With our hands on mentality, every idea is welcome and quickly tested. With a one/two-day event in the summer and winter, Christmas dinner, many many Friday beers and other spontaneous group events, Avantama provides a very familial work environment.
How does a typical day at the company look like? What excites you the most in your current job?
My day at the company starts relatively early at 7 o'clock when I check my mails and do the boring administrative things as well as analyzing gathered data. Between 8 and 9 mostly everyone has arrived and the whole office gathers for a coffee break with some chatting and sometimes a birthday cake or holiday sweets. Then the more practical part starts with preparing chemicals and running our production line involving analyzing samples with x-ray powder diffraction, UV/Vis spectroscopy and many analytical tools. Due to confidentiality, I can't tell you more about specific tasks. This work further extends into the afternoon and is only interrupted by another coffee or ice cream break in the afternoon. Between 4 and 5 it's home time. What excites me most about my job is to see how relatively simple chemicals can be transformed into our fascinating final quantum dot material, involving intense color changes, exactly what I imagined chemistry would be like as a child.
How did your application process look like prior to starting at this company?
I finished my master thesis right after the corona lockdown in summer 2020 and realized that fewer companies are hiring compared to before the corona crisis. I then started applying for internships, including one at Avantama. Samuel Halim, CEO of Avantama and the person responsible for recruitment replied to my application and asked if instead of an internship I would be interested in a full-time position. The first part of the application process was an online interview with the CEO and CTO about my CV and some scientific questions to test my knowledge and logical thinking. The second part was conducted on site involving lab work and typical calculations thatwould be done in the lab. I got to know the whole company and was introduced to the team I would be working with. Soon after I got the mail that would like to employ me.
What did you study and how did it prepare you for the work you are doing now?
I did my bachelor and master's degree in material science at ETH. On a scientific level I felt prepared well and most knowledge regarding the chemical processes and the physics of the quantum dots was taught as part of the curriculum. On a more practical level there was more of a challenge with working on big and heavy chemical reactors. All the work in the lab is more on the gram and milliliter scale and suddenly adding three orders of magnitude changes the way of handling as well as the necessary safety precautions. Otherwise as a more interdisciplinary study, material science helped a lot to bridge chemical problems with engineering solutions.