This article first appeared in BTS Issue 3.

By Chua Wei Hang, Senior (Class of 2020)
Engineering Product Development

Internship at Embraer in Brazil

I interned at Embraer, Sao Jose dos Campos (Sao Paulo, Brazil) and worked on Electric Vertical Take-off and Landing (eVTOL) aircrafts. The eVTOL industry is extremely new and faces many challenges, most of which are limited by today’s technology.

My job scope included identifying mismatches between conventional education and the skills required to design eVTOLs. The main skill that I picked up is the ability to break down complex problems, also known as wicked problems, and to solve them with solutions that require large amounts of integration. For many years, the aircraft designing and manufacturing industry has been applying these integrated solutions to the paramount problem of designing aircrafts.

My SUTD education therefore came into use when I was required to analyse the problem and the current proposed solution (the solution being the eVTOLs themselves) using skills learnt from our design modules.

There were many memorable experiences from my time here in Brazil. This included visiting LABACE 2019, an air show held in Sao Paulo.

Labace 2019, the Embraer Legacy 450

I also visited the “Iron Bird” which is a fully integrated system test ground before flight systems are installed, and got to fly a simulation of an air craft operated based on real components. My colleagues were very friendly and helpful, and invited me for barbeques
and drinks!

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