WITH increasing attention on the effects of climate change, going green is the way to go and self-professed nature lover, Lock Hun Yi, is doing his part for the environment.
He works for a company that harnesses wind power for clean, sustainable energy. Unlike fossil fuels such as oil and gas, wind does not produce carbon dioxide and other greenhouse gases that contribute to global climate change. The production of wind energy also does not use up water resources the way coal and nuclear power plants do in large quantities.
Mr Lock, 33, is a senior research and development engineer at Vestas Technology R&D Singapore, a regional hub for its parent company, Vestas Wind Systems A/S.
The Danish company, which develops, manufactures, sells and maintains systems that use wind energy to generate electricity, is the world’s leading supplier of wind power solutions.
The local R&D office, where Mr Lock is based, engages in high quality technology research, new component and sub-system development, as well as innovation in product development to maximise wind turbine performance, product reliability and reduction in costs.
He has to ensure that the company’s wind turbines meet their electromagnetic capability (EMC) requirements. This means making sure that the electromagnetic fields of the wind turbines will not interfere with other devices. On the flip side, the wind turbines must also adequately be able to resist interference from other devices in the surrounding environment.
“My day-to-day job involves reviewing EMC documents, and ensuring that we are able to meet both internal and international EMC requirements. I also advise designers on these requirements, as well as how to achieve them, especially if we face non-compliance issues,” explains Mr Lock. “Currently, I am also doing a review of our company’s EMC documentation process and testing.”
Mr Lock has a diploma in electrical engineering from Singapore Polytechnic and a degree in electrical and electronic engineering from the Nanyang Technological University.
He says his interests in electrical engineering and R&D were inspired by his father, who was a lecturer in Ngee Ann Polytechnic and used to build electrical cars and teach power electronics and other subjects related to cars.
“My father is very passionate about his work in making electrical cars and has a love for cars. He would spend hours reading car magazines, manuals and other car information, as well as repairing and maintaining his own car.
“I picked up many electrical skills from him and learned to repair many of my electrical toys in my younger days. This influenced me to take up electrical engineering courses.
“Although I do not share the same passion for cars as my father, I do have passion for work that is new and innovative. That is why I always wanted to take up jobs that are related to R&D.”
The public perception of the R&D sector as dominated by scientists with doctorates involved in predominantly research work is not all true, says Mr Lock.
He notes that most foreign companies in Singapore are actually more involved in the development aspects of R&D, so engineers like him are needed to do the implementation and ground work.
Besides working in an industry he is passionate about, Mr Lock says his job at Vestas also provides opportunities for him to work with people from different countries.
He is especially impressed with his Danish colleagues from the head office, whom he describes as friendly and approachable, with the management treating everyone as peers.
This facilities effective communication and makes getting things done at work easier, he adds.