My technical direction was determined by the first chemistry lesson I ever had. I simply was and still am fascinated by chemistry.
Thomas Rohde joined TE's materials development team in Ottobrunn, Germany in 2001, as a materials development engineer. Before joining TE, Thomas received his German "Dipl.lng" degree in Chemical-Engineering in 1999. Upon completing his degree he began working as a sales engineer for resins, gel-coats and glass fibers. He quickly grew his engineering and managment skills, and is now manager for TE's R&D Materials team.
What are some of the current materials advancements that TE is focused on?
The materials R&D team traditionally spends a lot of resources for the development and improvement of environmentally friendly formulations that meet international EH&S regulations (i.e. REACH/RoHS), but also satisfies the demand of our customers for "green", but high quality products. The demand and awareness has grown and TE is taking on the challenge.
What do you enjoy most about your work?
I enjoy my role as a materials expert as it requires technical diversity and a lot of collaboration with many other departments within our business unit, starting with the development engineers, compound manufacturing, operations, quality, product managers, up to the sales engineers.
What are your areas of expertise?
The R&D materials team is a group of experts in material development, analysis and measurement. Special areas of interest are polymeric heat-shrink materials, silicones, rubbers, mastics and hot melt adhesives.
What influenced your decision to become an engineer?
I'm generally interested in natural science, but my technical direction was determined by the first chemistry lesson I ever had. I simply was and still am fascinated by chemistry as it helps to understand why things are as they are or help answering questions like "what is it?". However, I always was looking for the practical side and decided that being an engineer would do that.