Here’s what the amateur snowboarder Evgeny who runs long calculations on the supercomputer for a living has to say about his life and work in an interview.

What are your hobbies?

One of my biggest hobbies is snowboarding, but I am also interested in surfing, wake- and windsurfing. I have a small collection of vinyls (mostly with the bands from 60s-70s), which I enjoy listening in my free time. 

What is your academic background?

In July 2015 I obtained my BSc degree in Applied Mathematics and Informatics from Moscow Engineering Physics Institute (NRNU MEPhI) in Moscow, Russia. During my BSc studies, I have been also working as a research assistant at A.A.Bochvar Scientific Research Institute for Inorganic Materials (VNIINM). My thesis was related to the spent nuclear fuel reprocessing. In September 2015 I started my MSc studies to obtain the degree in Applied Mathematics and Informatics from Tomsk Polytechnic University (NR TPU) in Tomsk, Russia. There I started collaborating with the research group from Leibniz Institute for Solid State Physics (IFW) which is located in Dresden, Germany. Our research was focused on vortices dynamics in type-II rolled-up superconductors. Then I successfully obtained my MSc degree in July 2017.

 Where are you working now and what are you doing?

In September 2017 I was hired as a PhD researcher at the Laboratoire Collisions Agrégats Réactivité (LCAR) which belongs to the Paul Sabatier University (UPS) campus. The title of my PhD thesis is the following: “Non-adiabatic dynamics of PAH-related complexes”. This topic is quite general and right now I am focused on the processes, which may occur in PAH molecules after absorbing a photon with a given energy. Events of that kind are presumably frequent in the Interstellar Medium, when PAH molecule absorb some sunlight. Several reaction pathways may occur: a) relaxation (no structural changes); b) fragmentation (molecules lose some atoms); c) isomerisation (structure of the molecule is changing without loss of atoms).

My supervisors are Dr. Didier Lemoine (LCAR) and Dr. Fernand Spiegelman (LCPQ) to whom I am very grateful for granting me an opportunity to perform this research. We also collaborate with Dr. Bruno Lepetit (LCAR) and Dr. Mathias Rapacioli (LCPQ) within the framework of this project.

My work spot

What is the best thing about your current job?

I highly appreciate my co-workers for lots of fruitful discussions and useful advices. My working environment is also worth mentioning since it provides a perfect opportunity to conduct a scientific research. 

Who inspired you to follow this career path?

It’s hard to select one person. My list of inspiratory figures starts with my grandmother, who taught me basics of algebra and geometry. Then it continues with high school teachers, university professors, supervisors and collaborators. And I am pretty sure that this list will be updated at the end of my PhD.

Sunset in Toulouse
·         I grew up in Moscow. It’s an amazing city and life there is very saturated and dynamic. What I like about Moscow is the full spectrum of activities, events, places and items, which you can find there.
·         I adore French cuisine and especially local dishes with duck. There is also a dessert called “Crème brûlée”, which may change your life forever . But be careful – it’s very addictive!
·         My favourite authors are Ernest Hemingway and Romain Gary.
·         It’s also not easy to choose a favourite musician, so I would mention both Jimi Hendrix and David Gilmour.
·         I speak Russian, English, French and a little bit of German.

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