Sanergy – Autodesk Design Fellow.

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Vacancy Announcement: Autodesk Design Fellow – Optimization Engineer – Mechanical / Process

Brief Description of your organization: Sanergy builds healthy, prosperous communities by making safe sanitation, accessible and affordable for everyone, forever. Starting in the informal settlements of Nairobi, Kenya, we provide safe sanitation (containment, emptying, transport, treatment, and reuse) to over 120,000 people a day at a quarter of the cost of the traditional sewer

In 2020, we are significantly scaling up our capacity to safely treat the sanitation waste from our toilet network in Nairobi’s slums. We are commercializing an innovative biological process that converts sanitation and other municipal organic waste into protein for animal feed from the harvest of Back Soldier Fly Larvae (BSFL).

Project Description: Lower the cost of treatment while producing valuable agricultural inputs, serving the community and environment, and doing it profitably. The intern will work as part of the
New Technology Commercialization team, who are responsible for building and commissioning Sanergy’s large scale waste treatment facility, which will be capable of upcycling 200 tons/day of organic waste using our novel insect processing technologies.

A critical component of the process is the feeding phase of the larvae. This is not only where the waste treatment happens, but also where 90% of the value is created, by converting that waste into valuable protein. The feeding phase needs to efficiently manage the 200 tons/day of waste that is delivered for treatment.

The equipment selected for this process has been adapted from other agricultural applications and will require significant on-the-ground innovation and improvement to optimize the process efficiency and effectiveness.

The Autodesk Expert Fellow project will focus on post-commissioning assessment and optimization of the new equipment and end-to-end process, with the aim to also prototype and implement improvements to the equipment and process designs. Through innovations, the Autodesk Expert Fellow has the opportunity to significantly impact performance, outputs and operational costs and the role includes an exciting combination of hands-on prototyping and troubleshooting with solid engineering and design.

About this Fellowship Project

Objective of the Fellowship: Analyze mass insect rearing equipment and process flow to optimize for rapid change-over and throughput.

The fellow will be responsible for:

  • Partnering with New Technology Commercialization Design/Build team to commission and troubleshoot new mechanical material handling equipment.
  • Designing engineering solutions to enable rapid setup, changeover and knock-down of the equipment to ensure cost and throughput targets are met.
  • Preparing drawings (CAD and 3D) for any prototypes and design changes required.
  • Overseeing any fabrication and assembly of solutions, as well as testing and implementation of the solution.
  • Assisting in further optimization of these designs if possible, through direct engineering or work process flow modification.

Qualifications, Skills & Experience

The ideal candidate should possess the following:

  • Strong design skills and experience working with Autodesk product design software for preparation of design prototypes, fabrication drawings and stress testing.
  • Proven experience in utilizing HCD principles to design affordable, desirable products.
  • Experience conducting primary and secondary research to inform design.
  • Familiarity with challenges and trends in manufacturing.
  • Ability to work independently to move deliverables forward.
  • Proven ability to structure and conduct design research and development without supervision.
  • Enthusiasm and skills necessary to bring structure to an open-ended question, going from a wide-open space of many ideas to a concrete, actionable recommendation.
  • Experience working in a developing country context would be beneficial but is not required.
  • Creativity, humility, integrity and a sense of humour.
  • Enrollment in the Autodesk Student Expert program prior to the internship commencing.

What’s in it for you

The fellow with work on an exciting project leading the development of black soldier fly rearing – a new process in a growing industry. The scope for interesting and varied solutions is huge, there is a lot of potential to unleash creative, interesting solutions and develop knowledge in a growing niche industry.

The fellow will gain hands-on, real-world experience by:

  • Designing and engineering novel solutions to an interesting problem
  • Being at the cutting edge of an immature process (BSFL production)
  • Partnering with young engineers to mentor and lead them to growth and success.

Project location: Nairobi, Kenya – Remote work

Please submit your resume and a cover letter HERE by October 11, 2020.




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