Physics alumnus Walther Åsen (1986)
Walther Åsen graduated in 1986 in Applied Physics at Strathclyde. He is Principal Scientist in the Norwegian Defence Research Establishment (NDRE)
I decided when I was 8 years old that physics must be incredibly interesting and I had a teacher who was a physics fan! I chose Strathclyde because I felt that studying abroad was a bit special. Luckily, I felt very much at home in Scotland and found it to be a very friendly country. The Scottish sense of humour and the weather were similar to what I was used to from my home village at the northwest coast of Norway.
After leaving Strathclyde, I had a range of jobs including software engineer, University lecturer, defence research scientist, and telecommunications engineer before I obtained my current post as Principal Scientist for the Norwegian Defence Research Establishment (NDRE) – you can see the details of my career path below.
Currently, I am engaged in radio communication research, including project management. I am also responsible for international cooperation between NATO nations. I enjoy this job because it has a good mix of international, management and research duties. I have also had the opportunity to participate in all sorts of international research collaborations under UN (ITU) and NATO systems, particularly related to the physics of radio communications.
I have always stuck to physics related work throughout my career, and I have a strong feeling that I will remain with physics forever so my degree has had a major impact on my career and it has allowed me to follow such an interesting and varied career path.
Away from work my interests are keeping fit and healthy, hill walking, cycling, and skiing. I am also interested in 'New Physics', Albert Einstein and natural philosophy in general.
Career Path (all Norwegian employers)
- Software engineer (at Kongsberg Defence Industries, 1 yr)
- Lecturer (at Molde University College, 1yr)
- Scientist (at Norwegian Def Res Est, 6 yrs)
- Chief Engineer (at Norwegian Post and Telecom Authorities, 8 yrs)
- Principal Scientist (at Norwegian Def Res Est, for 4 yrs and currently). + completed a part time doctorate degree in physics 1997-2002 (at the University of Oslo).