Jacob Connolly

Jacob Connolly

What is the name of the company you work for and what do they do?

Analox is a medium sized company that specialise in developing gas sensing solutions for safety systems. These include gas sensors for a submarine, a CO 2 sensor for a pub cellar or gas sensor for a scuba diver’s rebreather.

What is your role within the company?

While I was at Analox, I was a part of the Research department. My main role was to carry out research projects, which were often quite varied. Sometimes I would be testing a prototype sensor for a new application and other times I might be analysing historical performance data for sensors to understand how they could be improved for future versions.

Can you give me an insight into a typical day?

As soon as I arrived at work, I would usually take advantage of the free breakfast they provided! Then I would have a meeting with my manager where we discussed the progress I have made and whether I needed help with anything I was doing. The main part of the day consisted of project work - designing tests, taking, collating and analysing data. During my placement I wrote a lot of Python scripts to automate tasks - the grounding in Python I gained from University helped greatly with this. Usually I would also spend part of the day writing up what I have found into a report, this was especially important for end-of-project meetings where I presented my findings.


What do you enjoy the most and do you get involved in any interesting projects?

The best part of the job was being able to do real research and seeing how my findings might influence current or future products. The main project I was involved in was assessing the viability of a new gas sensor for use on Submarines, this meant I had to learn a lot about the environment onboard the ships and how the gas sensors work when pushed to their
limits.


Why did you want to undertake a year in industry?

Ultimately I wanted experience to help me decide what I wanted to do upon graduating. The year in industry has given me something to add to my CV which will be extremely valuable when applying for jobs.


What’s the most important thing you’ve learned during the year?

The most important thing I learnt was to have the confidence in my own ability and to know that I can do the job that I was hired for.

Has your experience given you a better idea of what you want to do for a career?

I think it has helped, I now know I would like to go into research within industry - perhaps leaning more towards the engineering side of things.