In celebration of Engineering Week 2022, we're hosting a Q&A series so you can get to know our Engineers. Meet Son Ngo, Mechanical Engineer at PAR Systems.
Q: What is your engineering discipline? / What type of engineer are you at PAR?
A: I am a Mechanical Engineer.
Q: What do you enjoy the most about engineering at PAR?
A: I enjoy designing machines, systems, and processes for our customers.
Q: What has been your biggest challenge while an Engineer at PAR?
A: The biggest challenge I have had is developing an automated sealant dispensing process. The sealant beads must be certain shapes and sizes, but it is very difficult to do this because sealant is very fluid. Designing special nozzles and controlling parameters to manipulate the shapes has been a challenge.
Q: What would you say has been your biggest engineering accomplishment that you are most proud of?
A: My biggest engineering accomplishment was developing an automated system that pick, place and palletize oil bottles. The system had seven different end effectors to handle different bottle sizes and picking methods. The system conveyors had unique escapement mechanisms that allowed multiple product quantities to exit the conveyors. It also had a palletizing robot that could stack boxes of different mixes of products.
Q: What does being a PAR Engineer mean to you?
A: Being a PAR engineer means creating solutions to help our customers with their complex automation challenges.
Q: What has been your biggest learning moment as an engineer?
A: As an engineer, I learn new things constantly when I am working on a new project. I had a chance to visit an aerospace manufacturing facility where they make flow measurement devices and I was really impressed with the level of details and accurate processes that go into making this part such as small part insertion, polishing, machining, etc... I see this part on planes all the time, but I never thought that it would be so complicated to make it. After seeing it being made, I have more appreciation for the people that are involved in airplane manufacturing. After all, without them, we wouldn't be able to fly.
Q: Why did you decide to go into Engineering?
A: I am a hands-on person and I like to build things, so I think that steered me towards mechanical engineering. As a mechanical engineer, I get to design, assemble, and test products. It feels very special when I see the products that I design get used in production.
Q: What advice would you give to a new employee just joining PAR as a new engineer? Or to a student looking to go into Engineering?
A: I advise new employees to be ready to accept new challenges and don't be afraid to ask questions. PAR has many talented designers, and they are all nice and willing to help.