If you are a new field engineer either starting your first job, or switching into field engineering from another role or industry, you may be wondering: What should I include in my tool bag? Is there anything really useful that I may not have considered? How can I carry everything? Here is some advice from experienced and veteran field engineers.
Field Service Engineer in Dubai
Sasidharan Ramasamy from India works for the Serac Group in Dubai. He is a Field Service Engineer and works on the installation and commissioning of filling machines and filling lines.
What is in your tool kit which is nonstandard but really useful? My multi tool from Leatherman
Which tool could you not work without? I always keep one tool in my pocket – it’s a tiny screwdriver – and really useful all the time
What’s the best bag, box or case you have ever used? Gt line toolbox was the best one. All of their boxes are very good and reliable.
Biomedical Engineering Supervisor in the United States
Paul Neher is the Supervisor of Biomedical Engineering at the Parkview Regional Medical Centre in Indiana. He is married with two teenage daughters. He recently celebrated 24 years in the career field and has held his CBET since 2011.
What is in your tool kit which is nonstandard but really useful? It’s not really non-standard, but my go to daily was a hip case which had the following: a good combi tool including no less than a knife, pliers, and mini screwdriver tips a combi-bit screwdriver with two sockets maglite hemostat Between this kit and my cell/mobile phone, I could resolve about 90% of my daily service tickets.
Which tool could you not work without? Unfortunately, my cell phone. With its array of apps, flashlight, and web access, it can act as a whole department of resources. What’s the best bag, box or case you have ever used? I used to be a road Service Biomed for our network of hospitals. Years ago, I came upon the Craftsman Versastack system. In it, I can carry my entire took kit, and it breaks down small enough to fit into the trunk of my car. It is also watertight, so it protects tools and documents. I can add or remove modules to configure it in different ways, and the collapsible handle and wheels get me in and out of most environments. As a road tech, the versatility was a game changer for me.
Wind Turbine Technician in Turkey
Erdem Akbas works in the renewable energy sector. He is a Wind Turbine Technician for Field Core in Turkey.
What is in your tool kit which is nonstandard but really useful? I have an electrician’s multimeter measuring instrument that I call a must-have in my toolbox.
Which tool could you not work without? I need the following with me whenever I work: Pickpocket Screwdriver Check pen Allen key sets.
What’s the best bag, box or case you have ever used? I use an Izeltas tool bag and I am really satisfied with it.
A Field Service Engineer and Manager in Turkey
Ercan Kavaktepe is based in Turkey. He works as a Field Service Manager and Engineer for Koro Ilac. His work involves medical instruments and robotic systems.
What is in your tool kit which is nonstandard but really useful? I use the Acrobat spiral screwdriver all the time.
Which tool could you not work without? There are two things which are vital to me whenever I work. These are: My long phillips screwdriver My allen key set What’s the best bag, box or case you have ever used? For me, the Beta tool boxes have been the best and most useful for the job I do. The reason I like it is because they are not heavy and then handles are good.
A Customer Support Engineer in India
Varun Sharma is an experienced Customer Support Engineer with a demonstrated history of working in the hospital and healthcare industry. He is currently working for Siemens Healthineers in Chandigarh.
What is in your tool kit/bag which is nonstandard but really useful? My tool kit contains: Screwdriver set L key set T-30 screwdriver Adjustable wrench Insulation tape Multimeter Cable ties Pen drive Wire stripper Wire cutter A handy knife
Which tool could you not work without? If I am working on an X-ray machine, I cannot work without: Screwdriver L key set If I am working on a CT scanner, I cannot work without: a T-30 screwdriver When I am working on any electrical problem, my multimeter is vital.
What’s the best bag, box or case you have ever used? The tool kit bag I use is a Stanley one which is very handy. It’s open mouthed and waterproof.
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Thanks for supporting The Field Engineer community Tim Robertson Founder.
Dawn Jackson is Senior In-House Recruiter at Peak Scientific. Dawn is based in Glasgow in the UK.
PEAK Scientific is a fast-growing global company specialising in laboratory gas solutions for analytical labs. PEAK has come a long way, and thanks to the exceptional talent and commitment of our people, we are now market leaders in gas generator technology. With over 20 years’ worth of experience in innovating gas generator technology, PEAK Scientific is the world leader in the manufacture and support of laboratory grade gas generators, providing highly reliable and robust solutions, mainly for: LC-MS (Liquid Chromatography – Mass Spectrometry) and GC (Gas Chromatography) applications. All of our gas generator products are manufactured at our HQ in Scotland. At the core of everything we do is providing our customers with unrivalled peace of mind with our high-quality gas generator solutions, tailored to the specific laboratory demands of each and every customer.
Our story has very humble beginnings. We started in a leaking shed in Linwood, just outside Glasgow, Scotland in 1992. Robin MacGeachy, Chairman and Founder, together with a small team, established PEAK Scientific in 1997 as a manufacturer of gas generators. Now, close to where we began, headquartered in Inchinnan, PEAK Scientific is the global market leader of on-demand gas generators with offices in over 20 countries and over 700 team members.
Our values are structured around our people, our customers, and our service. The work atmosphere we create is fun, friendly, and informal. At the same time, we never lose sight of our priority which is to always be delivering successful outcomes for our customers. These company values are what inform and protect our unique culture, which in turn shapes our brand and capabilities to deliver exceptional product design. Respect the individual. Customers, suppliers, and colleagues Freedom with responsibility. Restless. Constantly striving for improvement. Fun and Passion. Pride and enjoyment in what we do.
We are a family-owned business and just like in any other family, our people hold a special place at the heart of PEAK. The dedication and enthusiasm of our employees is at the centre of who we are. We invest in a culture built on collaboration which fuels our growth year after year. A commitment to on-going training and continual improvement is how we do this, with lots of fun and passion along the way!
Mike Wojtkowiak, Regional Field Service Manager
“We’re essentially there to save the day in the customer’s eyes. A major highlight of my job is the gratification I receive from customers. It’s a great feeling to do a job well done and to know you made a positive difference. I love how spontaneous each working week is. I’m always meeting unique people in a variety of different working environments in different cities and states.”
Field Service Engineers at Peak Scientific
As our business grows, we are looking for highly motivated and customer satisfaction obsessed Field Service Engineers to support our installed base of thousands of generators throughout North America. Service is our unique selling point and ensuring our customers’ laboratory gas supply is operating day in, day out is one of the core pillars of our success to date. This is why we need you to continue our success.
Esther Vera is Manager, Talent Acquisition EMEA for Sealed Air. Esther is based in Barcelona in Spain.
Sealed Air (SEE) is in business to protect, solve critical packaging challenges, and to make our world better than we find it. Our automated packaging solutions promote a safer, more resilient, and less wasteful global food, fluids and liquids supply chain. This then enables e-commerce, and protects goods transported worldwide.
The HQ of Sealed Air is in North Carolina in the United States. There are approximately 16,500 employees who serve customers in 114 countries/territories. Sealed Air continues to innovate and at the moment there are 2,875 patents and pending applications. In order to learn more, visit: Sealed Air
In 1957 Alfred W. Fielding and Marc Chavannes were trying to create a textured wall covering. They laminated two sheets of plastic together trapping air bubbles in between.
Although it failed as home decor, the material proved useful as a protective packaging material for small parcel shipments.
Fielding and Chavannes founded Sealed Air Corporation in 1960 with BUBBLE WRAP® brand cushioning as the company’s flagship product.
Our globally recognized brands include: CRYOVAC® brand food packaging SEALED AIR® brand protective packaging AUTOBAG® brand automated systems BUBBLE WRAP® brand packaging SEE Automation™ solutions Prismiq™ smart packaging and digital printing.
SEE’s Operating Model, together with our industry-leading expertise in materials, automation, engineering, and technology, creates value through more sustainable, automated, and digital packaging solutions.
Environment and Sustainability
We are leading the packaging industry in creating a more environmentally, socially, and economically sustainable future. We have pledged to design or advance 100% of our packaging materials to be recyclable or reusable by 2025, with a bolder goal to reach net-zero carbon emissions in our global operations by 2040. Our Global Impact Report highlights how we are shaping the future of the packaging industry.
A Service Engineer evaluates and recommends equipment improvements to improve availability, capability, and yield. In addition, the engineer performs the following three things. Performs equipment failure analyses (including preventative and unscheduled maintenance) Troubleshoots and diagnoses difficult, infrequent problems with equipment. Prepares technical reports to document equipment modifications and equipment maintenance procedures.
Systems & Integration Engineer
A Systems & Integration Engineer sells systems & integration customer equipment projects. As well the engineer supports the sales team on stand-alone equipment sales. The engineer also defines, develops, promotes, sells and delivers Packaging Solutions for Customers in a matrix environment in cooperation with the Sales, Service/Application and Euro Equipment Functions teams.
Why apply and join?
It is our responsibility to leverage what we have to affect positive and meaningful change for our communities and planet using Sealed Air’s global resources and expertise.
So, we achieve this in two key ways – corporate sustainability and customer success.
In essence, it’s about improving the lives of people around the world by addressing pressing needs in the communities where we and our customers operate.
In fact, this means meeting our customers’ needs.
That means at Sealed Air it’s more than a goal, it’s an integral part of our business practices, our innovative solutions, and our values. So, leaving our communities better than we find them through dedication of time, talent and resources.
Starting as a Field Engineer – what’s in your toolkit – part 7
If you are a new field engineer either starting your first job, or switching into field engineering from another role or industry, you may be wondering: What should I include in my toolkit? Is there anything really useful that I may not have considered? How can I carry everything? Following our other articles:
Starting as a Field Engineer – what’s in your toolkit We have had more advice from experienced and veteran Field Engineers for part 7. This time the advice includes gauze and bleach, and a Cat5 Lan cable which is the envy of IT people.
Michael Morales Field Service Engineer in Puerto Rico
Michael Morales has a background in electrical and electronic engineering as well as biomedical technology. He works for Medical Outfitters Inc and is based in Puerto Rico. Michael is fluent in English and Spanish.
What is in your tool kit/bag which is nonstandard but really useful?
Everything I use is pretty standard and nothing nobody has not seen before. However, I do have a quirky fully retractable Cat5 Lan cable that always catches people’s eyes. Trust me, this always blows the IT guys heads off.
Which tool (or tools) could you not work without?
I can’t work without my “red box”. This is especially true if I’m doing Nuclear Medicine or PET/CT stuff where there are a lot of Allen and Torx screws involved. It’s versatile, compact and the bits are grade 8 so it’s very strong. I call it the LeBron James of tools.
What’s the best bag, box or case you have ever used?
For years I’ve done the traditional backpack. Mine is filled with pouches and all my essential tools and laptop on the go type of thing. OGIO backpacks have always been my go-to and last many years.
What is the best piece of field engineer advice you have ever been given?
Learn to listen is the first key piece of advice. Our line of work is very important, and any piece of information extracted or given is key for troubleshooting purposes and overall success in the field.
Another piece of knowledge I’ve come to learn is that:
attention to detail is what separates a good FSE from a great one.
Never cut corners and always trust the process. It’s always worth it in the end.
Rock Muthoka a Field Engineer based in Kenya
Rock Muthoka trained as a biomedical engineer and also works as a videographer and Kamba Music Manager. She is based in Kenya in East Africa.
What is in your tool kit which is non-standard but really useful? Always a pen – I am never without one. Which tool could you not work without? The tool I can’t do without is a multimeter.
What’s the best bag, box of case you have ever used for your tools? The best toolbox I have ever used is a 599 piece tool set from Tectake. I’m using it at the moment.
What advice would you give to new engineers? For new engineers who are looking for jobs, I have three pieces of advice: Never give up Don’t be too choosy in terms of jobs first get a job, then keep looking for what really suits you while you are earning something. What do you do when something is not working but the issue is not obvious? If something is not working: I always consult my seniors and fellow engineers. If that doesn’t work, I take a break and come back to handle it later when my mind is clear (if it’s not an emergency).
Nakato Shadia a Biomedical Engineer in Uganda
Nakato Shadia is a Biomedical Engineer who has worked within hospitals and as a Researcher for the World Health Organization – WHO and now works for ElsMed Healthcare Solutions. She is based in Uganda in East Central Africa.
What is in your tool kit/bag which is nonstandard but really useful? The following are the items in my tool kit which are not standard: A roll of gauze 50ml syringe Gloves A bottle of bleach Which tool could you not work without? I can’t work without the following tools: Multimeter Star (Torx) screwdriver Plus/Minus screwdriver
What’s the best bag, box or case you have ever used? The Makita tool bag is my favourite.
What is the best piece of field engineer advice you have ever been given? There are two main pieces of advice: Always do your troubleshooting in a good way and things will progress well for you. Secondly, always do your PPM (Planned Preventative Maintenance) in a timely manner.
Starting as a Field Engineer – what’s in your toolkit – part 6
If you are a new field engineer either starting your first job, or switching into field engineering from another role or industry, you may be wondering: What should I include in my toolkit? Is there anything really useful that I may not have considered? How can I carry everything? Following our first five articles, Starting as a Field Engineer – what’s in your toolkit We have had more advice from experienced and veteran Field Engineers for part 6. This time the advice includes a mesh bag and a special piece of carboard.
A Semiconductor Field Service Engineer based in Italy
Federico Castoldi is a Field Service Engineer supporting semiconductor manufacturing equipment for Tokyo Electron (TEL). He is based in Lombardy in Italy. Before joining TEL Federico had over thirteen years of experience in the telecommunications industry. Tokyo Electron is one of the top five Semiconductor equipment manufacturers and suppliers in the world with its Headquarters in Tokyo, Japan. TEL focuses on Coater/Developers, Etch systems, Surface Preparation systems, Deposition, and Test systems. It is also a major supplier of equipment to manufacture Flat Panel Displays (FPD).
What is in your tool kit which is non-standard but really useful? My best non-standard, but very useful tool is a fully customized bit set. In this set, the hex-ball tips have a very low cut, handmade in a factory by a friend of mine.
Which tool could you not work without? I could not work without my Sk11 ratchet set, with ESCO hex-ball bits and related sockets.
The other tool which is vital is my Japanese wrench set. They’re small, hard, light, and wide; with them, you can fix almost every fitting if you are working on a Japanese semiconductor tool!
Is there a tool you have which would not be generally recognisable? I have an ESD (electrostatic discharge) pouch which I use in clean rooms to separate the tools. These bags, made of PVC, are very important for us.
What’s the best bag, box, or case you have ever used? The best toolbox to be honest for me is not the current one I’m using. I bought this one a few months ago in a common chain here in Italy (and immediately customized internally, removing everything and adding a new heavy-duty bottom layer). In the future, I would like to buy a hard case from Trusco or Pelican (even though Pelican is usually a little heavier). I’ve also found an alternative from Amazon Japan, which is probably lighter – the GT-c Astage ABS strong case. Although, maybe with shipping and taxes, it won’t end up being as cheap. Anyway, having said all that, I’m happy with my toolbox.
What is the best piece of field engineer advice you have ever been given? The best piece of advice I’ve ever had is in four parts. Be: Patient Focused Willing to learn Always follow the safety procedures if you want to come home safely. The other thing to do is to ask for help and support if you need it. I’ve been working in the semiconductor industry since 2019. I’ve found that in this field, that every day you can encounter issues you’ve never seen before. In these cases, the help of others is vital and will help you solve the technical problem. It will also make your customer happy (especially if the customer is always behind you, watching what you’re doing and asking you if you have finished every 30-40 minutes..).
Field Services Engineer in Canada
Alvaro R Hernandez Mendez is from Mexico and now lives in Canada. He studied Mechanical Engineering and has worked for Tetra Pak for over 25 years. Although he lives in Canada, he works for 90% of his time in the United States. At the moment he is mainly covering Michigan state with three major customers. In Michigan he’s in the village of Paw Paw for most of his time as he supports a customer who has 6 lines. Alvaro doesn’t just travel for work; he has also taken part in a triatholon/triatlón in Cozumel Mexico. He was on a bike. He travelled even more before and has worked in 23 countries and lived in 4.
What sort of equipment do you work on? My experience is most of the filling platforms: A3 speed, A3 Flex, A3Compact, TBA8, TBA21, TBA22, all Distribution equipment. I do maintenance -Tetra Pak Preventive Maintenance – TPMS, PLC programming, installations, start-ups, commissioning, mechanic validation, trouble shooting, production cover, etc.
What is in your toolkit which is non-standard but really useful? I always have a piece of cardboard with me. It doesn’t look like much but is really useful. I invented this and it is now called the “Mexican template”. My colleagues gave it that name. I started to use it as the creases on it fit perfectly into the machine to align all the carriers!!!
Which tool could you not work without? In the industry I work in there are two must haves in my toolbox: Wrenches – 13&10 mm Allen Key Metric. Maybe in a few forms (socket, crown, open, etc).
What sort of toolbox do you prefer to use? At the moment I use the NASCAR toolbox. The stickers decorating it are my own.
Starting as a Field Engineer – what’s in your toolkit – part 5
If you are a new field engineer either starting your first job, or switching into field engineering from another role or industry, you may be wondering: What should I include in my toolkit? Is there anything really useful that I may not have considered? How can I carry everything? Following our first four articles, Starting as a Field Engineer – what’s in your toolkit We have had more advice from experienced and veteran Field Engineers for part 5 This time the advice includes an extendable magnet tool for those times when something is dropped in the most difficult place to reach.
Senior Gas Turbine Mechanical Engineer in Dubai
Darren Hunt started his working life after completing his education in the RAF (UK) as Ground Crew working in Propulsion. He left older and much wiser to join General Electric (GE) in their Field Engineer Program in the USA where he was trained as a Mechanical Site Lead working with large frame gas turbines all over the world. Fast forward a little more and he joined Siemens in Dubai as a Mechanical Field Engineer working on their SGT 100-400 Lincoln fleet of Industrial Gas Turbine (IGT) units. Darren recently qualified to work with the SGT 800 – 62 MW(e) IGT from Siemens Energy Finspöng, Sweden. Darren really enjoys his working life and would recommend it as it’s varied and rewarding with amazing opportunities for growth if you apply yourself correctly.
What do you choose to have in your tool bag? All our hand tools are provided by Siemens Energy. However, there are a few special tools which are just better suited to me. For example, I really love Wera tooling the quality is head and shoulders above the standard.
What is in your tool kit/bag which is nonstandard but really useful? The answer I’m supposed to give is none, as we don’t use nonstandard tools for safety reasons. However, I do have a 17mm socket which has been ground down to fit perfectly for one application.
Which tool could you not work without? The tools I couldn’t work without, Laptop– it contains my world, my schedule, my drawings and most importantly my expenses. Extendable magnet tool – I have the dropsies: meaning if you give me the opportunity to drop something in a really hard to reach spot I’m the man for that job. Therefore, I have an extendable magnet tool (doesn’t work on stainless steel).
A sharp sense of humour – As working in the field is hot and tiring and often it’s wearing so finding time to make light of the little things really helps.
What’s the best bag, box or case you have ever used? For the past 25 years I have had a particular favourite brand which is The North Face. Many years ago, we were given the bags to trial, and I have beaten and battered them all over the world and they just keep performing. They are expensive but highly worth it. I have several different coloured duffel bags and a rolling bag plus backpack for my laptop.
Field Service and Support Engineer in the UK
Joe Fox is an experienced Engineer with a demonstrated history of working in the food production industry. He now works for UK Inspection Systems. UK Inspections Systems offers foreign body detection and weighing equipment expertise, sales, and engineering support to customers in the food industry.
What is in your tool kit/bag which is nonstandard but really useful? A telescopic stool – It’s not exactly essential. However, when working on control panels for long periods of time it saves the discomfort of being on your knees!
Strangely, my entire bag! Like most engineers, we aim to travel light so all tools need to be a ‘must have’ or essential. Although, to choose I would say my Wera Micro Precision Screwdriver Set. All those tiny drivers, all in one place!
As well, my Unilite IR-375R inspection torch, just because you can never have enough light especially on those machines tucked up in tight corners.
The tool bag
What is the best bag, box or case you have ever used? I’ve had a few. My current bag, the Unilite UR 4.5 is certainly the best for size, comfort and organisation.
What is the best piece of field engineer advice you have ever been given? “No two days are ever the same, have patience and ask questions.”
Starting as a Field Engineer – what’s in your toolkit – part 4
If you are a new field engineer either starting your first job, or switching into field engineering from another role or industry, you may be wondering: What should I include in my toolkit? Is there anything really useful that I may not have considered? How can I carry everything? Following our first three articles, Starting as a Field Engineer – what’s in your toolkit We have had more advice from experienced and veteran Field Engineers for part 4 This time the advice includes a blackboard erasable marker and a caliper.
Biomedical Field Service Engineer in Libya
Karim Algazzar works as a Field Service Engineer specialising in MRI and CT. At the moment, he works for Siemens Healthineers and is based in Libya He studied Biomedical Engineering in the German Jordanian University. After that, he had the chance to do an internship in ECG signal detection enhancement with a company called MedPersonal GmbH in Frankfurt, Germany. After completing the internship, he switched to radiology.
What attracted you to radiology? Radiology is a very interesting, demanding and challenging field. That’s the reason I love it. I need to solve problems every single day as well as moving from one site to another meeting different people from different fields. I could say that every day is a different experience.
What is in your tool kit/bag which is nonstandard but really useful? A leak detector is a very useful device during MRI installation or MRI quenching. It means we can detect leakage and diagnose the MRI without going through the trouble of disassembling parts or being invasive.
Which tool could you not work without? I could not work without the magnet power supply which is the device we use to ramp up the magnet (or for starting the magnetic field). What’s the best bag, box or case you have ever used? The ideal for me is a non-magnetic tools bag which contains tools made of steel or titanium. I need these so I can use them when the magnetic field is ON.
Global Field Service Engineer based in the United States
Don Ingersoll is qualified in Electronic Engineering and Business Management and has worked as a hands-on engineer and leader for over twenty-five years. He is currently a Global Field Service Engineer for Shellback Semiconductor Technology.
What is your key piece of advice for anyone investing in tools?
One thing I would recommend after 30 years in the business is don’t skimp on tool quality. Cheap Allen Key or Hex Key sets will strip the inside if heavy pressure is applied. The same thing goes for wrenches and sockets. While adjustable wrenches have their uses if there is any slip in the adjustment or jaws get a new one. If you need one that exceeds the jaws of a 6-inch wrench, get the correct open end box end. Make sure your direction of pressure on an adjustable is not against the clamping side; it’s rounded edges just waiting to happen. I bought my first set 30 years ago and I’m still using them. I’ve had to replace a few items because they fell 30 feet and bounced who knows where. However, I don’t think any of them have failed. Finally get a quality flashlight (torch). I have a USB rechargeable Fenix that I’ve charged 5 or so times in 3 years. It comes with 6 levels of brightness ranging from your basic Maglite® to something approaching the face of the sun.
The tools themselves
What’s in your tool bag?
I’ve got high quality – screw drivers, Hex keys, ratcheting open/box end wrenches, 6-inch adjustable wrench, micro screwdrivers, micro wrenches, various size pliers, tubing cutters, Fluke 87 full rms meter with standard, sharp point and clip on leads. Fenix USB rechargeable flashlight, Magnetic end articulated flashlight, Wadsworth 152-piece super kit.
What can’t you do without?
I can’t manage without: Fenix flashlight Fluke87 and leads Tone Hex keys Nos 1 and 2 screwdrivers and wrenches Wadsworth kit A Leatherman.
What’s the best bag, box or case you have ever used?
I’ve used Jensen multi pallet toolboxes. Over the years I’ve also used a Pelican 1510 or the Apache 5800 (currently using with most of the foam removed so bags sit securely). I’ve had the 5800 for two years and it has survived all the airlines can throw at it; it’s a much lower cost alternative to the Pelican 1510.
The best advice I can share is to plan the job and adjust what you carry. Preventative maintenance (PM) visits are different than overseas installations.
Field Service Lead for Immunodiagnostic Systems in Norway
Roberto Aghaei is based in Oslo and works for BD who are a global medical technology company. He works on systems for: Blood culture Clinical microbiology Mycobacteria testing Identification Susceptibility
What is in your tool kit/bag which is nonstandard but really useful? It is not so strange, but a nonstandard tool I have in my tool bag is a calliper. It’s maybe not the strangest thing but not really a normal tool either. Which tool could you not work without? I could not work without my multimeter and my Torx socket set which also includes all the standard heads I need.
What’s the best bag, box or case you have ever used? In my opinion, the best cases are without question Peli cases (Pelican cases). The quality is much better than any other bags/cases I have tried.
What is the best piece of field engineer advice you have ever been given? The best advice I have been given is to prepare as much as possible for what you are going to do. If you take on a challenge well prepared, you will not be stressed or surprised and you will most likely succeed on your first visit.
Biomedical Engineer in Chile
Jose Morillois the third generation of his family to work as an engineer. He has worked in biomedical engineering for almost thirty years and covers a range of equipment over a wide geographical area. He has his own company – J.MORILLO. EQUIPOS MEDICOS.
You work on a lot of different types of equipment. How do you manage the tools you need?
Our service tool case MUST be an image of the quality we offer. As personal as the configuration of our cell phones. I usually have the major set of tools (those most often used) in a case and others in my car. As well, I have “kits” for specific tasks such as a change of CT TUBE or replacement of a Cold Head in a Magnet. All the tools in my case are often used. This allows it to be as light as possible.
What is in your tool kit/bag which is nonstandard but really useful? The following tools are always with me: A metallic and a plastic Vernier Caliper Two colours of indelible ink marker and a blackboard erasable marker a dentist stainless steel set an alligator cables set a non-magnetic 10mm ratchet
Which tool could you not work without?
In terms of tools, I could not work without a: Phillips screwdrivers set. In terms of instruments, I could not work without: Service PC, calibrated multimeter, and a pocket DSO (Digital Storage Oscilloscope).
Carrying the tools
What’s the best bag, box or case you have ever used? Eight years ago, I acquired a PLATT big-size tool case and love it. It replaced my old and original Xcelite Wood and leather suitcase.
What advice would you give to your younger self about being an engineer? There are five key pieces of advice I would give. Firstly, if you think you don´t need a tool, take it out of your suitcase and leave it in the car but NEVER leave it in the office. Secondly, if you are troubleshooting complex equipment and locate a minor failure, fix it before continuing the troubleshooting. A lot of times they are related. Thirdly, at the end of the service ALWAYS test the system and check no screws are missing or in excess. Fourthly, be logical. Logic can save a lot of time troubleshooting a complex failure. Spend the initial time reading the errors log, talking with the operators, and over asking about the failure BEFORE beginning troubleshooting. Lastly, clean the system before beginning to work.
If you are a new field engineer either starting your first job, or switching into field engineering from another role or industry, you may be wondering: What should I include in my tool bag? Is there anything really useful that I may not have considered? How can I carry everything? Following our first two articles, Starting as a Field Engineer – what’s in your toolkit We have had more advice from experienced and veteran Field Engineers for part 3. This time the advice includes cotton buds.
CT/MRI Field Service Specialist in Brazil
Julio Carvalho was not originally an engineer. His background is in cyber security. A friend asked him to move to the area of medical equipment and they began to work together. The amount of new information with this change was enormous, but made easier for two reasons: Help and support from colleagues The fact that imaging equipment has a lot in common with the servers he was used to managing. He continues to learn and often speaks with colleagues from different countries about the problems presented and possible solutions. Julio works for HexaMedical.
What is in your tool kit/bag which is nonstandard but really useful? Amazingly, my least common tool is a set of wrenches and ratchets. Although simple, having small tools is very useful for removing boards or making adjustments in places with little space. Not to mention that a kit like this takes up much less space in the bag than having the tools independently.
Which tool could you not work without? A good screwdriver is essential, in addition to cutting pliers and hex keys. With these five, it is possible to open and dismantle 90% of the equipment. I am nothing without them.
What’s the best bag, box or case you have ever used? I prefer a bag. I keep the most common tools in it. In addition to the essentials, I always have a multimeter, soldering iron, electrical tape, contact cleaner, WD40 and gloves. In the car I have a suitcase with special tools for heavier work.
What is the best piece of field engineer advice you have ever been given? The best piece of advice was one of the first. “Have the patience to analyse the problem and keep yourself in a comfortable position to perform the activity without hurting yourself or damaging the equipment.” A piece of advice for anyone thinking about starting in the area is to study and dedicate yourself. You will see the importance of work when doctors and nurses thank you and let you know that because of their and your work, many lives are being saved. This is priceless.
Field Service Engineer in Egypt
Ahmed El-Naggar graduated in Chemistry in 2003 and then gained a Postgraduate diploma in Analytical Biochemistry in 2006. His first job role was as a Laboratory Manager for pesticide residues analysis using chromatography techniques. He then moved from food testing to antidoping testing for athletes. This used high end chromatography hyphenated with mass spectrometry techniques.
After this he changed again leaving the lab to go into the field as an application support / sales specialist for chromatography/mass spectrometry techniques.
Most recently he has moved away from analytical techniques (small scale systems) to the factory scale or production scale biopharma field (large scale systems). He works for Cytiva and is based in Egypt. Ahmed says that he is always thrilled to learn new technologies that are pioneers in his country or region. That’s a powerful motivator for him.
Which tool could you not work without? My short answer is the Multimeter. My more detailed answer is that it will be system design dependent related to function. For example: gas or liquid flow meter temperature meter stopwatch pressure meter tachometer angle meter What’s the best bag, box or case you have ever used? Pro’sKit bags are the best I have used.
Biomedical Equipment Technician in California
Francesca Fam is a Certified Biomedical Equipment Technician (CBET) working for Stanford Health Care. She is based in California.
What is in your tool kit/bag which is nonstandard but really useful? Something nonstandard but really useful in my tool bag is a pair of surgical tweezers. Which tool could you not work without? I couldn’t work without a screwdriver. If I absolutely had to choose, I’d pick a Philips #2 size 2. I seem to use that the most. What’s the best bag, box or case you have ever used? I don’t have a preference on tool bags or boxes.
How can you protect your back when carrying and working? I protect my back by lifting with my knees, using a cart/dolly whenever possible (or getting one of the men to do the heavy lifting lol), and doing core exercises at home. What advice would you give yourself the day you started as an engineer? The advice I would give myself the first day I entered this field (even though I am an in-house biomed now) would be to enhance your skill set- whatever it may be. Go to trade school if you’re thinking about getting into the field. Take an online class. Find a company that sends you on training courses. Do anything you can to improve yourself. I feel like I waited too long, and now I am playing catch up. Currently, I am taking a computer networking class online in preparation to take the Net+ exam. I could have done that years ago. I would also tell my younger self to not be so intimidated by the fact that this is a “male dominated” field; don’t second guess yourself so much.
Biomedical Engineer from Syria
Muhammad Hasan Sandouk has been a biomedical engineer since 2008. He has worked on a wide range of medical devices and equipment for: Ophthalmology Radiology Dermatology He has also worked as a field service engineer fixing and maintaining excimer laser systems and maintaining cath lab systems.
What is in your tool kit/bag which is nonstandard but really useful? One of the most useful things is cotton buds. They are so useful for cleaning optics.
Which tool could you not work without? By far the most important tool for me is the multimeter. What’s the best bag, box or case you have ever used? I am happy with any small bag which I can put the necessary tools in. Which multimeter do you use? Well, because of the current situation here, we don’t have expensive multimeters. So, we make do and improvise. If I have a choice, I prefer Fluke and Sanwa.
Ideally, I would use a true-RMS (root mean square) device.
We use this kind of device to measure signals that are not measurable with usual multimeters. What is the best piece of field engineer advice you have ever been given? The best advice I have ever had, and which I pass on is: “To be as cool as an iceberg.”
Senior Biomedical Engineer in Qatar
Azhar Muhammad is a Senior Biomedical Specialist at Aman Hospital. He installs, test, calibrates and repairs biomedical equipment. He also trains users.
Which tool do you carry with you which is not medical but really useful? I carry a set of Allen Keys as I need them for just about every task. Which tool could you not work without? The key thing I work with are analysers and I carry four. The equipment I work on is divided into: Category 1 which is lifesaving equipment – e.g., a ventilator or defibrillator Category 2 which is for standard/routine use – e.g., a vital sign monitor
Types of Analysers
The four analysers are:
Electrical Safety Analyser (EST)
I use this on all equipment to check that all parts are safe and will function correctly. If the electricity drops, then there could be a huge risk to a patient.
A defibrillator is an electronic device that automates the delivery of an electric shock to the heart to restore its normal rhythm, defibrillators are critical in saving lives in emergencies such as sudden cardiac arrest and dangerous irregular heart rhythms (ventricular tachycardia, etc.).
What if the devices aren’t working properly? The results can be seriously harmful or even fatal. The best way to make sure your Defibrillator is functioning properly is to test it periodically (e.g., following its manufacturer’s recommended interval or every six months}. The testing procedure is specified in the service manual for the particular model. It is important to comply with the manufacturer’s specifications for regular defibrillator testing to ensure the device operates accurately. Such analysers measure the output energy delivered by the defibrillator. They may automate the inspection and preventive maintenance testing of defibrillators. They must test at least five basic defibrillator performance features: charge time, discharge energy, synchronised-mode operation, ECG monitoring, and automated external defibrillation functionality.
Gas Flow Analyser
For example, I use this to check a ventilator/anesthesia ventilator and whether it is measuring oxygen in and carbon dioxide out correctly. We test once a month and with the analyser it is as if we are testing it on a real person. Proper function and maintenance can be the difference between life and death for a patient. Best practices for the delivery of anesthesia require complete anesthesia delivery system testing. Some key points in best practice are as follows. The first step is to obtain and understand the requirements for performance and safety from the service manuals. Once the specifications are noted, the medical gas delivery system should be tested for all modes of ventilation. Test points and ranges should be checked with standardised test equipment. The test procedure should be validated and put under version control. Test and inspection frequency should be set based on the service manual or a risk-based assessment.
Tachometer and Multimeter
A tachometer checks speed or rate and a multimeter checks current, voltage and resistance. So, these are used for all sorts of medical equipment – e.g., test tubes in a centrifuge
What is the best piece of advice you have been given as a biomedical engineer? Sometimes we work on machines which are not in use, but we are also called when a machine is in use and malfunctions. This is always more urgent and more stressful. For example, we may be called to the operating theatre by a doctor or nurse as they have never seen the reading on a particular machine before. In general, there is a lot of panic to deal with and of course time pressure. As well, it can be a piece of equipment you haven’t worked on before. The advice I was given, and I would pass on to other engineers is to do this: Stay calm and appear calm Look for the model number Go to Google Download the manual Look up the code If it means a part needs to be replaced, you might be in trouble! However, if something just needs adjusting, then you will know what to do.