Get to know Elian

What do you do?

I am a process engineer. I describe it as executing the design on the main lines for an installation and making sure that it ultimately works. I make schematic representations of the facility, so for example Piping & Instrumentation Diagrams (PI&Ds). In addition, I am involved in equipment selection, calculating heat exchange,  pump flows, basically the whole technical part for each new waste processing plant.

I spend a lot of time at the computer, occasionally visiting a site. When I go to the site, it is for a commissioning, or to help with troubleshooting. For example, if a pump keeps breaking down, or keeps going outside its curve, we do the problem analysis.

How did it start?

I started working for WTT 3 years ago, just after I graduated as a mechanical engineer. The main reason why I chose this job is that I wanted to travel a lot.  I applied at WTT as a commission engineer, but I had no knowledge of waste processing plants, chemistry or biology. WTT hired me under the condition that I had to start in the engineering room, so I could learn how everything works. But after half a year I became a process engineer and I still like this job. As process engineer you are the one that is responsible for making sure that everything runs smoothly at the facilities and this is what motivates me.

What do you really like about working for WTT

What I like about my job is that I experience a broad range of technical challenges and opportunities to learn. It is biological,  chemical, electrical, you can  master different areas of technology. I really like that, if I want to learn something new, I look for an area and I’m going to learn something from it. I have a great day if in the morning I find a problem for a new or existing installation and I get to go to the bottom of the problem and at the end of the day figure out the best solution.

In addition, what we do here had a positive impact on the world. We can process waste in a good way, instead of letting it go to landfill. At the end of the week, I like the feeling of having contributed to that.

What I really like about WTT is that it is a flat organization. It’s not hierarchical, I can walk right in on anyone. You can tell anyone what you think and how you feel about it. Colleagues are there for each other, if you are sick you are always asked by a colleague of they can take something over from you.

Life outside work

I am always renovating and helping friends and family out. I did all the installation and electrical engineering work of the house of my brother-in-law and I am currently working in the house of my cousin. My colleagues also like to talk about sustainable energy solutions, so we talk a lot about stuff like heat pumps and solar panels. When I’m struggling with something, I always have colleagues who know how to solve it and together we figure out the best technical solution.