9th February 2020
[In Conversation] Nitin Chopra, Mechanical Design Engineer at ION Energy Inc.
One of our best and brightest team members – Nitin Chopra is a 23-year-old Mechanical Design Engineer from Pune. From IC Engines to electric mobility, Nitin’s journey talks of one of the smartest transitions he has ever made!
To know what gets him truly excited at his job, how he’s found his passion and what’s that one thing that he wants to design for each and every person on this planet, read on!
Q. Can you tell us about your company and personal work journey? How did you come across ION and decide to kickstart your career here?
A. I joined ION in November 2018. I was placed during the campus selection from my college. I was given a role in Operations, but I was reluctant since I wanted to join Mechanical. Akhil (Co-founder & CEO) understood this and hired me as an intern.
Other than this, I had job opportunities in 2 OEMs for sales and on-site Engineer. But I was researching the company and talking to the guys who were already working here. I loved their passion, it got me instantly attracted to ION and I took up the internship. After a 3 month period when my colleagues really liked my job, I got hired as a permanent employee.
I was a Formula Student and the leader of the IC Engine team. So I saw this as the perfect opportunity to broaden my horizon towards electric mobility. Being a startup, I knew the kind of work I had to do over here and the amount of dedication it required. It felt the same as compared to my time as a Formula Student.
Q. How did you feel about transitioning from IC Engines to electric mobility?
A. Moving from IC Engine design to battery design was a huge decision for me. I contemplated this decision for a very long time. My team members were very supportive and guided me along with their insights and advice. I remember Akhil (Co-founder & CEO) giving me an analogy about this. The entire experience has made me a lot more comfortable in transitioning from IC Engines to electric mobility. As I was preparing to enter into the world of EVs, I realized that this is a much-needed shift in making the planet pollution-free.
Q. How clear are you about what you want to achieve in your career? What drives you at work?
A. I want to design something that will be used by each and every person on this planet and I believe batteries are one of these things. So I know the steps that I need to take in the coming years to become an expert in this field. Being at ION, I have had the opportunity to meet and work with extremely talented engineers, mentors and esteemed customers in the field of Lithium-ion batteries. I get to work on big projects and study the approach towards a design problem to make it mass manufacturable.
Q. What’s the best part of your day? What do you like the most about working at ION?
A. My job is to design and optimize the structural and thermal aspects of battery packs. I spend around 10-12 hours in the office. The office environment is very friendly and I usually feel like this is my home. I love it when we get together for birthday celebrations, yoga and meditation sessions. We have a small indoor garden in which anyone can spend some leisure time. The office is surrounded by books and anyone can pick up any book they like.
Q. What are the kind of challenges you look for? Can you describe a challenge you faced and how you overcame it?
A. Recently, in a battery design project, there was a problem with the aging of the cells due to the design. Our customer was struggling with this challenge for over a week. As we got to know of the problem, I came up with an innovative solution to it because I related it with a design I worked on during my formula student years. It worked fine and saved a lot of designing efforts, time and costs.
Q. What are your ambitions/aspirations when it comes to work and life?
A. Firstly, I want to design something that each and every person on this planet will use. Second, I want to design something that will go into space.
These are my ambitions and I think ION is a very beautiful platform that will help me achieve these ambitions.