Hello Sandoko Kosen

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Sandoko Kosen, researcher at WACQT, working at the quantum computer.
Sandoko Kosen, researcher at WACQT, working at the quantum computer.

What is it like to work at WACQT? And how was it to move to Sweden? Read about the experiences of Sandoko Kosen, researcher at the Quantum Technology Laboratory at Chalmers.

Why did you choose to work at WACQT and Chalmers?

I started thinking about my post-graduation plan around the time when I was about to finish writing up my PhD thesis. I thought quantum computing was cool, so I applied to several research groups in Europe focusing on this area. I found out about the WACQT and Chalmers activity from Dr Giovanna Tancredi who was already a researcher at Chalmers.

My visit to WACQT and Chalmers was very interesting and enjoyable. The opportunity to work on scaling up the superconducting quantum processor using 3D integration technology sounded exciting, and while I knew little about it, I thought I could contribute to the ambitious goal and also have the rare opportunity to help shape the path towards it, so I accepted the Chalmers offer and moved to Gothenburg.

It turned out that I was right. There is a good balance between science and engineering in our work, we get the opportunity to publish our works, and have our contributions acknowledged and appreciated by the community. I certainly feel that we are making real progress towards achieving our goals and advancing the state-of-the-art of high-quality superconducting quantum processors.

What was it like to move to Sweden?

I was a bit anxious about moving to Sweden which is quite unlike other countries I have lived. I am glad though, Sweden lived up to most of its good reputations. Everything including the tax reporting system is very well-integrated, I really like it. I have been fortunate for having found great friendships with the people in WACQT as well as in nonwork-related communities. Gothenburg has avery nice vibe and is, so far, very welcoming to international people. The summertime is absolutely beautiful in Sweden, I really recommend it.

Administrative-wise, it was almost hassle-free in my case after I accepted the offer. Our administrator and HR staff are very experienced and made sure I could settle down properly. Couldn’t have asked for a better onboarding experience!

We have an interesting collection of people with various sets of skills, and it has always been a true joy to learn from them.

Sandoko KosenResearcher, WACQT Chalmers.

Describe what you do on a “regular workday”!

It really depends on the focus at that point in time and if there are urgent matters in the lab and the cleanroom that I have to attend to. When things are ”normal”, I would usually start my day by checking messages, emails, and new, relevant papers at the arXiv repository. After that, I shift gears into a sprint mode, trying to achieve the one or two critical tasks that I have planned for myself.

We have our usual lunch at noon, I usually grab a sandwich from a local cafe, and head to our common kitchen area to join others. My afternoon varies from day-to-day, it could be full of meetings, sometimes interspersed with trips to the measurement lab or the cleanroom, or it can be very calm which I truly enjoy by returning to my office to continue my work until the end of day. Sometimes on Friday, we head off to a local bar at the end of the day with others for drinks and dinner.

Really the best part about working at WACQT and Chalmers is the people you get to work with. We have an interesting collection of people with various sets of skills, and it has always been a true joy to learn from them. Sometimes we argue on various matters which I think reflects how difficult it is to build a quantum computer. Bringing these different perspectives together has not always been easy, but we have managed to do it and keep delivering progress and getting us closer to our next milestones.

Text: Sandoko Kosen, Jenny Palm, Ingela Roos