We are Emil Asplund and Emilia Azam Ghasemzadeh – two summer interns working in the Radio Department at Ericsson Research in Kista, Stockholm. Emil is starting his third year at Globala Gymnasiet, where he is studying natural science, while Emilia graduated from Kungsholmens Gymnasium this summer, where she also studied natural science. The two of us began our internship at the end of June, and we have been busy ever since.
What is wave propagation? Multi-user MIMO? A spectrum analyzer? Carrier aggregation? What is different with 5G? How does a receiver work? An antenna? These are among some of the many questions asked during our summer internship at Ericsson Research, and every single question was answered by our colleagues in the Radio Department with a smile on their faces. Being a part of a company in the forefront when it comes to technology and innovation has not only been a great learning experience but has also opened our eyes to the great diversity here at Ericsson.
From school to work
You have probably heard most young people say that it’s hard being young nowadays, and we would partially agree. The endless possibilities, the many open doors available, and the growing competition (with regard to applying to university) make it necessary to make choices that can last a lifetime. That‘s one thing the two of us have in common: not knowing what to pick from the ever-so-big ocean with strong currents of career choices passing by. It might be scary not knowing what you will do in the future, but that is one of the reasons why we chose to apply to the summer internship program at Ericsson. Being a part of a company where some of the most brilliant minds come together, where ideas are born, and where innovations are made is a great place for learning and applying the skills that we have acquired during the years we spent in school. Each day at our jobs was different. We listened and learned something new from our colleagues every day. The picture that we both had before starting at Ericsson about what an engineer does (or even what Ericsson does) changed immensely after seeing how varied the tasks could be as well as after speaking to our colleagues and hearing about what they do.
What did we do at Ericsson?
The day we arrived, we headed straight into learning and trying to help with things that our colleagues needed. This included such tasks as performing signal measurements with a spectrum analyzer to figure out what signals, and at what strength, exist in the air around us; programming in MATLAB, writing reports, and reading drafts of new publications.
One of the most interesting parts of our job included seeing how ideas overcome obstacles and become reality through such innovations as 5G. Not only does 5G increase the speed of mobile internet but it also enables remote surgery, self-driving vehicles, automation in smart grids, and the wireless control of massive machines with its low latency and high reliability. 5G NR (New Radio) is a huge project that has been going on for years, and knowing that our signal measurements using the spectrum analyzer can be used in the near future to establish the placement of the new 5G antennas is very fulfilling.
At the close of our internship period, we got some answers to our questions indeed, and we will continue to ask them even after our time here. Not only is Ericsson a great place to learn, but learning is made easy due to the pleasant atmosphere, the diversity, and the accommodating co-workers that we had the pleasure to meet and talk to. After our summer as interns at ER Radio, the ocean full of strong currents doesn't seem to be so scary anymore.