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“I always have new domains to explore, to push a way further to develop new, or to optimize existing, processes or machines”.

Anne Henrottin

Please, tell us about your professional background and your present job.

I’m R&D Manager in LASEA with a team specialized in Optics and Metrology. I have done my studies at the University of Liège in Physics Engineering, with a speciality in Microfluidics and Electronics physics. At LASEA for 9 years now, I’m responsible for different R&D projects (European and regional ones) in the field of hybrid laser joining, closed loop control system, machines for the future with kW laser or R2R system but also in the field of microfluidics or micro-optics processing.

When did you decide to dedicate to scientific research?

I was always tempted by the challenges and the way to achieve them, specifically in the medical and technological domains. I selected engineer to achieve a concrete and applicable work while developing my knowledge in mathematics, physics and biomedical domain.

In your opinion, which are the most exciting challenges to come in your field?

What is exciting in my job is that I always have new domains to explore, to push a way further to develop new, or to optimize existing, processes or machines. We work with cutting-edge technology, and we have to always push our imagination to the limit of what it is possible to do. It is very exciting technologically speaking.

Currently, a huge challenge I have is to build machines with huge and heavy components, integrating very powerful lasers, with the goal to keep an excellent quality, the accuracy, and the flexibility of current standard machines. Moreover, the beam handling is now very innovative with many possibilities : multiple beam, beam shaping, new scanners systems, etc. The role of LASEA is to combine, integrate and validate all the components together to achieve the best result on the workpiece. The R&D department is so exciting for this reason because we are in the first step of the proof of concept of future commercialized products.

Multipoint is a research project funded by the European Union. Have you ever participated in more projects funded by the EU? How do you evaluate them?

Yes, I already participated in various European funded research projects (PMJoin, ESSIAL, MULTIFLEX, PHABULOUS,…). This type of projects is important opportunities to bring together specialists as SME, research centres, universities, etc. to develop very new technologies and to open new collaborations. Having European funding helps SME companies as LASEA to develop new technologies, to limit the risk taken during such significant developments, which are also significant regarding investments for SMEs. This also enable us to have an international visibility in our sector.