As part of our employee stories, we introduce you to the personalities within our company. Tanja Gewald told us more about her work at ERC in an interview.
Tanja, before joining ERC you worked in the energy and automotive industries.What can you now bring to your day-to-day work at ERC?
A bit of everything, I would say. I am now transferring the diverse experience I have gained so far in research, development and consulting to the issues in aerospace applications. Trying to combine the best of these worlds.
As part of my PhD degree over the last few years, I worked on lithium-ion battery technology with special focus on its degradation during use. I am now able to pass on the relevant knowledge of electrical-thermal behaviour I have acquired, as well as apply my corresponding modelling and simulation capabilities at ERC.Besides the technical aspects, in the past I worked on several long-term projects. There I learned how to structure and manage the tasks for myself as well as for a team to bring these projects successfully to the finish line.
“… the thrill of playing a decisive role in the development of an eVTOL right from the start …“
Why did you decide to work in the team at ERC?
(Smiles) I just got caught up in ERC’s #BiggerThanUs spirit right from the first job interview. The family atmosphere, the enthusiasm for the work, the openness in dealing with mistakes and the mutual respect – I found, and still find, this corporate culture simply great.
And then, of course, at ERC there is the thrill of playing a decisive role in the development of an eVTOL right from the start and embarking on this exciting journey together with the team.
What is your role in this journey? What are your tasks at the moment?
I am responsible for the battery and high voltage system in the eVTOL as my main technical task. Currently, this mainly involves the corresponding requirements engineering and concept work. Over the next few years, I will also be involved in the testing and certification process for these systems and components.
Besides the technical aspects, I am currently coordinating our branding campaign with the design of our website, contributing to setting up our internal processes and keeping lookout for additional motivated, passionate team colleagues.
Exciting and varied work – you certainly won’t get bored! Between your own work, meetings and discussions, is there still time for the social aspects in your team?
(Grins) Is that a euphemism for the coffee klatsch? Yes, of course we have that too, as well as team evenings with pizza and drinks – we are currently implementing that virtually. In addition, not a day goes by that without me laughing heartily with my colleagues at least once!
What else can you learn at ERC besides the purely technical stuff?
I am still learning a lot about the processes in the aviation industry. It’s really amazing how multi-layered it is – and to be honest, also somewhat documentation-heavy. But above all, these processes are clever and safe.
Is that also one of the challenges at ERC or are there more difficult things?
For me it was a big challenge to really understand the difference between requirements at the aircraft level and at the system level. Learning to find the right balance between abstraction and detailing. Pure brain acrobatics!
What does #BiggerThanUs mean to you?
For me, #BiggerThanUs expresses that using our common passion for our vision we can grow beyond ourselves and achieve something that is more than the sum of our individual abilities and personalities.
“The sheer anticipation of the day when our eVTOL takes off from the ground …“
What keeps you motivated?
The sheer anticipation of the day when our eVTOL takes off from the ground, hovers briefly above us and disappears a short time later on the horizon … and the goosebumps when I think of this moment!
What is so special about working in the team at ERC?
If I have to name only one thing: The intense feeling that my work really matters – for the team and for our common vision.
If you also want to have the intense feeling that you are creating something that matters, visit our career page!
About eRC-System GmbH
eRC-System GmbH develops a manned electrical vertical takeoff and landing vehicle, having all aspects of certified aerospace products in mind, right from the start. The company is closely cooperating with suppliers, partners and authorities in order to realize sustainable solutions for technical, operational, and infrastructural challenges.
ERC was founded in 2020 by a team of aerospace engineers that already has gained experience in this field for many years. Being pioneers in the development of new technologies that will last beyond a human and that will have impact on the daily lives of millions, requires ERC’s “Passioneering spirit” – the combination of passion and know-how.
Being well-funded, the initial team already grew a full-featured company around the topic that is still prospering fast and highly dynamic.