Working at the Heart of the Action
The job of a field application engineer at Sensirion
As a spin-off of ETH Zurich, Sensirion still has strong ties to the university, with contact between the two occurring via career fairs, academic associations and individual project support. The latter is how a process of exchange was facilitated for the "breathe" ventilator currently being developed by an ETH team. Thanks to its low-cost, modular and intuitive design, this ventilator is especially suitable for use in emergency situations in countries with less purchasing power. It is not a replacement for conventional, more complex ventilators. Rather, it is intended to alleviate the global shortage of such systems.
Due to the acute increase in demand for ventilators, Sensirion has been working on a cost-efficient flow sensor. The SFM3019 mass flow meter, developed in response to the COVID-19 pandemic, is particularly suitable for high-volume applications that require good availability of critical components during this difficult period. Sensirion employees were more than willing to make the SFM3019 available to the ETH project, enabling progress to be made primarily on driver and sensor implementation. A Field Application Engineer from Sensirion, Maurin Widmer, was in contact with ETH engineers for this purpose. "I studied mechanical engineering at ETH myself - this is my old department - and I was particularly pleased to offer my help to the project. The project benefits people in developing countries and should help them during this crisis."
Sensirion's Field Application Engineers tend to work behind the scenes and do everything they can to help customers implement sensors. They are therefore deployed to major customers' sites or in emergencies. In most cases, a solution has to be found under great time pressure. "The great thing about my work is that I get to see how satisfied the customer is, and the product is launched on the market soon afterwards. You can directly see the impact of your work, especially since our sensors are used, as in the ETH project, to help improve health," says Maurin.