Engineering Spotlight: Alexis Dole

Tell me a bit about your role within the Digital Displacement team? 

I started working on Digital Displacement technology and the development of the DDP96 as a mechanical engineer around 11 years agoI’m fortunate to have been involved from the first concept stages, piston and pump housing design through to the first prototype and rigging this up on the demonstrator vehicle to demonstrate the benefits.  

Now, I work within the systems team, interacting with our customers. I’m passionate about working with customers’ systems to identify the best ways of saving energy and making improvements to their systems and ultimately, helping the planet. 

Alex Dole - Engineering Manager

How did you get into engineering? 

 Growing up in rural France I initially saw myself going down the farming route, but I’d always had an interest in engineering activities and repairing things like bikes. As I became more interested in renewables, engineering felt like the right choice and I went on to study this.  

 After university I was keen to move to an English-speaking country to improve my English. I visited Scotland often when I was younger and fell in love with the country, so Edinburgh felt like the perfect match. With my desire to work in renewables I soon came across a role with the Digital Displacement team in Edinburgh that seemed like a great fit. The other roles I had been looking at were very desk focused but working with Digital Displacement offered the opportunity to work in the lab, so it was the R&D culture paired with the renewables focus that attracted me.  

 How did you fall into the role you are in now? 

 After working with Digital Displacement for some years in Edinburgh, I moved to Germany for a while to support Danfoss with design development activity on the DDP96. When I returned to Edinburgh, I then moved into the role of Engineering Manager within the systems team and was a key link between bringing the existing Digital Displacement team and Danfoss together.  

What do you find the most interesting thing about Digital Displacement? 

 The way in which the pump acts as the heart of a machine and impacts the complete system means there is a huge potential to save energy. As an engineer, you have to think about the way this one element will interact with the whole system to bring about the most benefits. This, paired with its unique controllability, means there is endless possibilities. The digital control enables so many ways in which we can use the product which makes my job really exciting. 

 What would you say to someone considering using Digital Displacement pumps within their technology/machinery? 

 Recognise that it’s a new, complex technology. It might be a bit scary at first in terms of the system complexity but with current trends in global warming, businesses across the globe are facing pressure to reduce energy usage and carbon emissions. Digital Displacement pumps will enable our customers to keep operating and selling their machinery as regulations on emissions continue to get tighter, especially in more stringent markets like Europe. Further to this, our products will be an enabler of electrification in the future and those with early experience in this area will have a big advantage over competitors when this becomes more common. 

 What stream/focus of engineering do you see yourself being involved with in the future? 

 As we grow in the market and see an increase in customer interaction this is where I see myself evolving. I want to continue working with systems application engineering so that I can support customer relationship development and help make the technology accessible to as wide range of customers as possible.  

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