28 juli 2022

A passion for paper: “There are complicated physical principles behind it”

"When I graduated, I didn't know what I wanted... doing research was my passion. But where exactly? There were so many possibilities. I was approached by several secondment agencies, but with ENTER I had the best feeling." Speaking is Stan Camp, who has been working for ENTER for almost a year at a large company that develops and produces industrial printers. He did not expect it when he studied, but now he has a passion for paper.

Stan studied Applied Physics and obtained a Master's degree at Eindhoven University of Technology. "There I discovered that I really enjoy doing research. However, I missed the collaboration and team spirit that you have in a company. That's why I decided not to do a PhD, but to go into business. Just no idea in what direction!”

Stan Camp
Stan Camp

Account manager David Dilien helped Stan choose. Stan: "If you had said earlier that I would be working on industrial printers, I would probably have said no very loudly. But when I went for an interview, it turned out to be very interesting research." Stan's work involves very large machines that can print up to 9000 sheets per minute. "We make the machine ourselves, but we buy the paper. At the moment, not every type of paper can be used in our printers. We want to expand the number of types, so we need to know why one type of paper can be used and another cannot. And how can we cleverly deal with that and adapt our machine?"

Package of fibres
Paper is actually a package of fibres, Stan explains. "That can be from different trees, the coating of the paper can be one layer or multiple layers. There are many factors that determine how well paper absorbs the ink. In fact, if you touch a sheet of paper for just a moment, you are already changing the paper and you can see that when you start printing."

"Paper doesn't seem very high-tech, but there are really complicated physics principles involved"

Stan Camp

"Paper has something old-fashioned, it doesn't seem very high-tech, but there are really complicated physics principles behind it. That makes it very exciting to work with." It was a bit of a surprise for Stan too, he admits. "I didn't really care for it before, but now I really suffer from professional deformation. Nowadays I also watch how things other than our own are printed."

However, his enthusiasm is not limited to the product he works with, it is also the atmosphere and the colleagues at the company where he is seconded. "I have a lot of freedom. My research is about understanding paper better, that's the main question. But how I do that is up to me. I work very independently, but everyone is there to help me. Everyone here is very open and willing to have a chat, which is really nice."