VoltSafe Blog Team – May 29, 2023

Get To Know: Shahbaj Dhillon, Power Electronics Lead, Co-Op Mentor, Shadow’s Dad & Frozen Treat Specialist.

Shahbaj Dhillon mentors most of the co-ops that come through VoltSafe’s office. He has the knack of breaking the mystery of electronics and electricity down in a way that makes it easy for anyone to understand. You can find him in the lunchroom swapping stories about classes and professors at UBC with the co-op students and team members who graduated from UBC. It wasn’t until his 4th year of undergrad at UBC that he focused on power electronics. The interesting thing is that he didn’t know what he was getting into. However, he chose to pursue power electronics because he was more interested in hardware design than programming.

This is probably why he considers VoltSafe Marine the most interesting product for him. Shahbaj points to how the product exhibits different features in one package working together. He enjoys seeing the full system in action.

His favourite feature of the VoltSafe Marine connector, is that like other VoltSafe connectors, it is safe to touch when the active and passive side are disconnected. As a Power Electronics Lead who deals with electricity all the time, he finds this feature pretty cool. It has made him more relaxed when handling and working on the high voltage connectors and is something that he now considers normal. Through the design process, more safety features have been added that monitor voltage, current and temperature. This is to make the product as safe as possible and prevent failures normally seen with traditional plugs. He’s used to getting a few jolts while unplugging chargers at home so he knows what a game changer VoltSafe’s connectors are going to be for the public .

Which is why he was eager to get VoltSafe Marine and other VoltSafe products ready to show off at the Consumer Electronic Show. He put in some long hectic hours with fellow Power Electronic Engineer Keenan Bell to produce functioning prototypes for the show. Despite a few hiccups along the way, they managed to get the prototypes ready in time for their big debut. They took a few strategic decisions during the design process earlier in the year that really helped mitigate any major roadblocks.Having worked on his own projects such as building a drone, has helped Shahbaj predict and plan for issues that may arise down the road. 

When not working on VoltSafe’s hardware, he prefers to spend his free time skiing and cycling. He also enjoys cooking, prepping his meals for the week with a staple pasta dish but also enjoys baking. Like most folks during the early days of Covid when bread was scarce on the shelves, Shahbaj went through a bread-making phase, even making his own sourdough starter. His favourite home-made dishes are steak, garlic chili oil noodles and chocolate chip cookies.

We’re sure that it’s in the kitchen where his taste tester and part-time Electronics Pawer Engineer, Shadow, a chocolate Labrador German Shepherd cross, loves spending time with him the most. Shadow rarely appears in the office these days and there’s a reason behind it. Shahbaj shared with us, “ We shared a workspace. He’s lazy first thing in the morning. I’ve caught him sleeping on the job many times. Once he’s up though he has some trouble focusing on his tasks. Always looking forward to lunch time. He loves to distract me. I’d say having separate workspaces is for the best.” So unlike our regular office pups, Shadow spends most of his time working remotely.

Having a dog helps him get outside and keeps him active. Exercise is an important part of his routine and he stays in shape by getting to the gym regularly and skiing, biking, hiking and taking part in other sports in the summertime. 

Staying cool during his activities and especially in the office during Vancouver heatwaves is a special skill in and of itself. Shahbaj balances a steady consumption of Bublys with a particular brand of popsicles that staff have renamed Shahbajsicles. But when asked what he would choose between two items remaining in the lunchroom, a can of Bubly and a Shahbajsicle, Shahbhaj thinks he would choose the can of Bubly. He tells us that when the temperature rises, so does his Bubly consumption. With the low calorie count, he doesn’t have to worry about having too many. He also doesn’t have to worry about spilling his Bubly drink on the connectors while he is working on them. As mentioned, live electricity only flows when the active and passive ends are connected.

If you would like to learn more about the amazing VoltSafe connectors that Shahbaj works on while consuming carbonated water, follow us on social or browse our website.

About VoltSafe Inc.

VoltSafe Inc. is changing the way people connect to power. Headquartered in Vancouver, BC, the Canadian tech startup has reinvented the electrical plug by eliminating prongs, adding magnets and an “electrical fingerprint”. Using patented technology, VoltSafe has created the world’s safest, simplest, and smartest plug design since electricity came into homes more than 140 years ago. The company’s product pipeline includes magnetic plug replacement solutions for household, commercial, industrial, marine, electric and autonomous vehicles, emergency services, data centres and more.