Adnan Zentani, BCRRE Lab Manager has been shortlisted for a BUAFTA award. We wanted to find out more.
For the past 29 years, Adnan has worked at the University of Birmingham. After completing College with a year out in industry in Swansea he came back to the Midlands and was offered jobs at both the University and the machine tool factory, Cincinnati. Keen for security and diversity, his wife convinced him that the University was the best option. ‘I never imagined I’d be here 29 years later’ he said laughing.
Adnan started work at the University as a Mechanical Workshop Technician in the Engineering department in 1990 before BCRRE was formed. He had lots of exposure to a variety of fields such as underground acoustics, communications and radar, which made the work interesting and varied. Adnan has been involved in many interesting projects over the years. He recalls working on a two and a half tonne torpedo to which he drilled and fitted electronic devices. ‘The torpedo was then sunk into the sea bed off the coast in Greece to monitor acoustics for earthquake detection. It’s probably still there’.
He has also been involved in military projects to detect unseen objects, simulations and even worked on how to make fishing nets attract the right type of fish using acoustics for a project in Europe.
Today in BCRRE, Adnan looks after students and research fellows and guides them on their projects, while continuing to offer technical support in the BCRRE lab. One of the things he has worked on previously is robot racing where he taught students how to build a robot from scratch and then race them. He is also part of the Hydrogen Hero team, and is in charge of the hydrogen gas, which is a crucial component!
Adnan’s continuing dedication to the University has led him to be shortlisted for a coveted BUAFTA (Birmingham University Awards for Tremendous Achievement) for Technician of the Year. The winners will be announced tonight (15 February) at a gala ceremony held in the University’s Great Hall.
‘I have no idea who has nominated me,’ he says. ‘My daughter is coming with me to the ceremony and we’ll be celebrating with champagne if I do win’.
Adnan has seen many changes in BCRRE over the years and one of the biggest surprises is just how big the Centre has grown. Adnan is clearly a very modest man who has helped many students and staff members over the years. He reflects that, ‘you want to take pride in your work and for things to succeed, otherwise what’s the point of getting up in the morning?’
*Update: We are pleased to announce that Adanan won the BUAFTA in his category. Congratulations Ad! *