Meet the yet2 Team – Congcong Xue
This is one in a series of blog posts where we highlight members of the global yet2 team. We recently spoke with Congcong Xue, associate project leader, based in our worldwide headquarters, in Waltham, Mass.
Q: What technology excites you the most these days?
I’m very excited by the advancement of artificial intelligence (AI). From a user standpoint, AI is immersing itself into every aspect of our lives. I would expect to see its impact keep growing exponentially.
For example, take smart voice assistants like Siri or Alexa. They’re getting more intelligent and sensible. They can recommend better music that suits your mood and suggest the best restaurant that matches your taste.
Autonomous cars are also an example of AI playing a larger role in our lives. While a level-five, full autonomous, self-driving car is still on the way, we can already benefit from smart parking, adaptive cruise control, and conditional automation. With the advance of the self-driving car, we can expect it to give us more free time and provide more convenience to elder people. It can also deliver more mobility to disabled groups.
Q: Are there other areas that interest you?
I’m interested in sustainability and renewable energy – in particular, solar energy technology. My PhD thesis was about solar energy utilization. One aspect of my research was focused on enhancing solar cell efficiency by harvesting low-energy photons, which are usually omitted by traditional photosensitizers. By extending the absorption profile of the light-harvesting molecule to red and near-IR region, the incident photon to current efficiency (IPCE) is expected to double.
The other area I worked on is to convert solar energy into clean feedstocks, such as H2. Our team developed an efficient photocatalyst molecule that can both absorb solar light and catalyze the H2 generation reaction (published in Nature Chemistry). I’m well-versed on the technology developments in this area, such as new materials for solar cell and fuel cells.
Q: What type of client engagements do you enjoy the most?
Kick-off meetings, which are our first meetings with clients are very energizing. They help us clarify the scope of the projects and learn more about the background of the project. The discussion between the clients and the yet2 delivery team can bring out many insights that we simply can’t get from documents. This information can direct us with better scouting and filtering guidelines and help us to avoid pitfalls. From a consultants’ side, this also helps us to set clear expectations and goals for the project.
Q: Any podcast recommendations for us?
I’m a big fan of Robinhood Snacks Daily, a business podcast. The host shares three interesting market stories with digestible insights in 15 minutes daily. You get deep insights with a fun style. It’s a great resource to get yourself familiar with the latest market trends.
I also like How I Built This with Guy Raz by NPR. Each episode is an interview with an entrepreneur, and they talk about how the founder built the business from scratch. I find this podcast extremely inspiring. Guy delves into the hardest part of how they founded and grew their businesses.
Q: What do you do like to do when you are not working?
Fitness! I love lifting weights and challenging myself to perform better. I also love yoga and the serenity and improvements that my daily practice brings to me. I also like to cook – I’ve been trying out new recipes.
Meet other team members from yet2: