- Who are you?
Pranshu Upadhayay (ESR 11) from India
- How would you define yourself?
Simple living high thinking
- So, what do you exactly do within the DEMETER project?
As an electrical machine design researcher, I work on the design of machines used in automotive application with the aim of reuse and recyclability of rare earth permanent magnets. The design should be such that the magnets can easily be disassembled at end-of-life so as to be reprocessed into new magnets; and also the machine should be operational with recycled magnets at the same time. This leads to reduction in dependence for rare earth materials to be sourced from outside Europe.
- Why did you choose this topic, and why the DEMETER project?
I think the topic chose me rather than me choosing the topic. The DEMETER project is the most conducive environment for research along with development of so many other skills (technical and non-technical) for a researcher.
- Would you pursue a career within your topic?
Before joining the DEMETER project I was already in the field of research and development of electric motors. This project is an extension of my career in industry and fortunately, I have been able to benefit from my previous work experience. For my future professional career, I see myself working in automotive applications for coming years.
- Have you ever considered moving to a new country/continent before?
While I was in India, the thought of moving outside India never crossed my mind. Now that I am in Europe, I am tempted to travel more places and discover new experiences.
- What is your impression of your host country? Would you like to stay after the project is over?
France is so misunderstood because of prevalent clichés and stereotypes. I was pleasantly surprised by the warmth and helpful people here. There are some bureaucratic hiccups and not knowing French makes it worse. However, in the end, it is a beautiful country with intellectual people and the freedom to nurture ideas.
- Do you work alone on your topic or do you have a “teammate”? Tell, us something about him/her!
In our Work Package I closely associate with ESR 9 (Amit), ESR 12 (Ziwei) and ESR 10 (Adolfo). We have transitioned from colleagues to friends and I have some very good and fun memories of our secondment together in Aalborg, Denmark. And also during our bi-annual meetings, when I meet rest of the ESRs, the interactions are always thought provoking and enjoyable.
- Approaching the end of the project…share your best memory in DEMETER.
I think I have two.
First one is when I saw my design culminating into an actual product. The prototype fabrication was sheer joy for me as I could see my work translate into reality.
The second and more personal one is our 2 month stay in Aalborg. We stayed in a summer home and experiencing the serene countryside was something I will remember for a very long time.
- From your experience, what do you think an EU MSCA project offers to an ‘early stage researcher’ that a regular one doesn’t?
I have three very succinct points to summarize this:
- Industry Academia collaboration
- Opportunity to often meet the whole research group (ESRs, professors, industry collaborators, EU representatives) and discuss ideas and work progress
- When in a project like DEMETER, you are never alone. You have many collaborators to turn to in times of resource and research needs.