Meet The Team – Bernd Kreynen
the next few blogs we’ll be giving a brief introduction of some of the team members that work on electronics and talk about what they do within the team. We sometimes have difficulties with finding enough people for our department so I thought it would be nice to show that it’s possible to work on this aspect of the bike with many different backgrounds. I’ll start the series with myself:
Name: Bernd Kreynen
Role: Chief Electronics
BSc. Computer Science and Engineering with a minor in Electrical Engineering
Currently erolled for MSc. Computer Science – Data Science and Technology
What do you do within the team?
As chief electronics I’m responsible for the electronics department of the team. This department has to design and implement all electronics that do not belong to the powertrain of the bike. This includes systems which I’ve talked about in previous blogs, like the safety control unit, battery management system and data acquisition system. Together with a few other students in this department I work on the design and implementation of these systems.
Why did you want to join Nova?
Before I finished my master I wanted to take a year of to work for one of the dream teams. This compelled me because I wanted to get some more practical experience with completing a big project. Another aspect that really spoke to me is that you know that your designs will actually be implemented and used, which means you have to take into account more things than you usually do for a university project (e.g. is the component I want to use available for ordering? Can this design be manufactured? Etc.). Since I enjoy riding motorcycles a lot myself the choice for Nova was easily made.
Which aspects did your background prepare you well for?
I think the aspect my education at the TU Delft prepared me the best for is learning new concepts. While I have a minor in electrical engineering, mainly my background is in computer science. This means that a lot of the tasks I had to do where things I was doing for the first time. But with the basics from my minor, some research and some advice from old team member it is always possible to figure out what needs to be done.
Which aspects did you wish you were more prepared for?
Mostly the management aspects of a team, in particular how to keep team members motivated. This can be difficult in the dream teams since many people work on the team next to their study, so they’re quite busy. There is also less of an external incentive, since you do not get ECTS for being in a dream team nor do you get paid. This means that opposed to an university project where there is usually a big incentive for doing well on the project (i.e. passing the course you need to finish your studies) it is very important to keep the team members intrinsically motivated. But even when working on projects where there is an external incentive like a salary or ECTS keeping your team members intrinsically motivated is important to get the best results. This can be a big challenge and it would have been nice to be better prepared for this, but over the year I’ve been learning a lot about what does and doesn’t work to achieve this!