21 Dec Martin Newman
Why I loved it:
“As a mechanical engineering (motorsport) student, I was wary of applying for the Electronics Hardware placement at Red Bull Technology. The Placement and Careers Centre were useful in helping me craft a CV good enough to get an interview, and I managed to beat a huge amount of people in being chosen for the placement. I think my mechanical background actually appealed to the interviewers, as it gave me a different perspective and a particular set of skills that electronics students lack. The Electronics Hardware department is responsible for the design of many of the electronic parts on the car, their fit and their connection. There were two students: myself and an electronics student from Plymouth Uni. Our roles were very involved; students there were treated equally to permanent staff.
I was involved in numerous projects, involving all sorts of areas of the car electronics and controls. Many of my projects were mechanical in nature, such as protection for sensors and other electronic parts. I was responsible for designing electronic parts such as circuit boards for the steering wheels and car setup equipment. I also carried out testing on electronic parts, including vibration/temperature testing and x-ray testing. My attention also was turned to the show-cars that RBT run.”
About my experience/Tips for students:
“My advice to anyone planning on applying for a placement job in F1 is to have a great CV, one that stands out instead of looking identical to all the others. Vary what projects you include. You’ll probably find that Brunel gave you a lot of good skills that will come in useful. If you got to grips with NX you’ll be one step ahead of the other Design placement students, as Brunel seems to be the only uni that teaches it. During winter, this particular placement is also extremely demanding. It gets very involved with the car build process, and it will not be unusual for you to be working until past 2am most nights and over weekends. Don’t even bother applying if you don’t think you’ll be able to cope with the long hours from December-March. On the plus side, you get free take-away for staying late and a cooked breakfast at the weekends.
This is a great placement that’ll give you a lot of real-world knowledge and a wide variety of skills. You’ll be involved at all stages of projects: researching, designing, building, testing and fitting parts for an F1 car. I have only touched on the huge amount of things I’ve been involved in, as I didn’t want to end up writing a multi-page essay. Doing a placement is a no-brainer. If you miss out you’ll be severely hampered trying to find a job when you’re competing with people who spent time in the industry, the real world is completely different to university. A placement in F1 is especially good for those that plan on moving into motorsport, as it’ll give you the chance to see if it’s really for you.”