Visible Spectrum is a series to spotlight talented and dedicated women employees across the Lab. Anothai Thanachareonkit is a Scientific Engineering Associate whose work helps expand the understanding of computer simulation to help streamline energy use in buildings. One of her colleagues notes: “Her experience with equipment such as blast chillers and refrigerators is extensive and remarkable. I admire her work and dedication to always perform above expectations.”
In her free time, Anothai enjoys testing new recipes and recreating traditional family dishes in her kitchen. She also enjoys traveling with her family and learning about each destination through its architecture.
What inspired you to work at Berkeley Lab?
I followed the work, research and publications from the Lab from before I joined in 2011. I have consistently been impressed with the innovation, research, and technologies invented here. I also appreciate Berkeley Lab’s dedication to visiting scholars, students, and other professionals’ education, providing opportunities to learn and exchange ideas with others. In fact, while I was pursuing my doctorate in 2007, I was one of the students who visited and had one of the best experiences working with the Window and Daylight Group.
What does your current scientific project or research entail?
One of my current projects revolves around working on testing and evaluating daylighting technologies. This study will expand the understanding of computer simulation in relation to advanced window systems. I assisted in the decision-making during all stages of the project, from testing and modifying technologies, instrument setups, and additional configurations to get the best quality and output possible. These findings will be particularly crucial in streamlining energy use in buildings.
What excites you about your work at the Lab?
What excites me most about my work at the Lab is the possibility to engage in many interesting collaborations with interdisciplinary activities. I am proud of being part of such a great team, and most proud of working in the field that could improve human comfort while also saving the environment.
Do you have tips you’d recommend for someone looking to enter and/or succeed in your field of work?
Window and daylighting study is a fun and multidisciplinary field full of experts who have various backgrounds including architecture, civil engineering, mechanical engineering, physics, and many more. Once you identify your own interest, following current research trends would be a good way to understand the skills one needs to succeed in this area.
How can our community engage more women, girls, and other underrepresented groups in STEM?
This is a challenging question for our community. One thing I would like to propose is providing more opportunities for these audiences to have more firsthand experience with our community’s work. It could be a STEM educational camp where they could do hands-on work for a week or more with mentors from the field they are most interested in.