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Lieven Desmet

Engineer at Airbus Helicopters

Dr. Ir. Ing. Lieven Desmet is working as an engineer and Avionics Systems Design Responsible at Airbus Helicopters, in the Lighting & Electrical Systems department (ETZIEG).

"In 1997 I attended Flanders Technology, and after seeing the laser setups of TONA at the exhibition, I wanted to learn more about the magic of light! After graduating as an industrial engineer in micro-electronics, I decided to pursue a second Master in Photonics at VUB. Intuitively I felt that key technologies for the future would be micro-electronics, photonics and artificial intelligence. The first commercial CD players were launched at the time, and I was hooked by the fact that light can be used in electronic systems to make things better! Also, the first electronic music emerged in the '80s-'90s, and it was very popular in disco’s to use lasers for entertainment purposes. I guess all of these sparked my imagination and lead to the decision to study photonics."

"I graduated at the right time: photonics was breaking through with applications in many different fields and it was exciting that B-PHOT was expanding and offering so many opportunities for exploration and research. B-PHOT has trained me with world-class theoretical physics, basic and applied research and has given me the freedom to experiment and find one’s personal inclination. Next to micro-optics and micro-laser research for optical telecommunications, the invention of the blue (and white) LED triggered my interest in solid-state lighting. This has been the basis for the rest of my professional career in industry."

"Exposure to quantum physics was for me an almost religious revelation: a whole new and very abstract way of looking at the world existed! One of the most important skills obtained through university studies is the ability of abstract thinking. In addition, B-PHOT has provided me with plenty of hands-on experience in practical laboratories with unique access to state-of-the-art measurement instrumentation. Our analytical skills were developed with optical systems modelling and verification using a wide range of professional simulation software tools. I can fairly say today that such a unique combination of engineering skills has been paramount for my career success."

Check out the Airbus documentary on the small-range H135 and H145 helicopters: