Forging the future of radar technology
The year was 2018, and the popularity of AI and machine learning was on the rise. At the same time, a student studying computer science decided to focus his thesis on this flourishing field. Fast forward a few years, and he has now become a Scrum Master for a team developing the next-generation radar detector systems at Saab. Allow us to introduce Eric Norgren.
Navigating the unknown
Eric Norgren's passion for technology has been present in his life for as long as he can remember. As a child, when playing around with his remote-controlled car, he enjoyed it the most when it broke because then he had the opportunity to try out his tech skills when building it back together again. Today, he utilizes his curiosity for technology and all its possibilities here at Saab
"I got in touch with Saab through a friend who, at the time, was going to write his thesis here. They needed another person, so he recommended me. What intrigued me at that moment was the chance to work with AI and machine learning applications. It was a rapidly emerging field, which generated a lot of buzz at school, and Saab was also keen on making it a focal point, so I was one of the early team members to dive into this exciting area," Eric shares.
Finding a needle in a haystack: that's how Eric describes his job as a Scrum Master at Saab. Identifying the meaning of different signals in a huge amount of data coming in from the radar detector system sure is a challenge, but it's also equally important to solve.
"It's like driving in pitch-black darkness, and someone turns on a flashlight. The radar acts as this flashlight, illuminating the darkness and allowing us to identify objects, but we still don't know what they are. On top of that, we see all these signals at once, as if someone is shining flashlights everywhere from all directions simultaneously. Our task is to train the system to distinguish between these signals and identify any potential threats. It's a challenging and exciting task to work with," Eric continues.
"It's motivating to know that I'm part of building highly complex things that could become something really great in the future."
From thesis to tech leadership
Since Eric started at Saab, the interest in AI has continued to grow, and so has his team. In only a year, the team grew from four team members to twelve and in relation to this, Eric has taken on a leading role at the company, ensuring that the team is working in an agile and effective way.
"As our team has expanded, I've been given the chance to take on a leadership role. While I've always had a keen interest in the technical side, recently, I've also been drawn to the idea of trying my hand at a leadership position. I'm grateful for the support I received in pursuing this desire, allowing me to further my education and test my abilities in this role."
"Our close teamwork allows for a swift transition from idea to implementation and testing, and witnessing rapid results is truly fulfilling."
Your advice to a potential colleague?
Be intentional with your interests and show how engaged you are in it. Being motivated and interested in a subject is more important than being the best in class. If you are passionate about your work, you can come a long way here at Saab.
The best thing about being a Saab employee?
It's a combo of the technology we work with, the cool and complex products we develop and my fantastic and competent colleagues.
Your biggest strength?
I believe my biggest strength lies in my technical competence and ability to apply machine learning to real problems.