Employee Spotlight:  Felix Chen – Principal Engineer, Quality, Reliability and Materials at Kymeta

As we honor Asian American and Pacific Islander Heritage Month this May, we spotlight one of our remarkable team members, Felix Chen. His eight-year journey at Kymeta embodies not only professional growth and innovation but also the rich diversity and invaluable contributions of Asian Americans and Pacific Islanders in our workforce. Felix’s unique blend of scientific expertise and engineering creativity has made him a standout figure in our mission to revolutionize communication and connectivity. What sets Felix’s experience at Kymeta apart is not just conquering technical challenges; it’s about cherishing the close-knit community, where colleagues feel like family amidst a culture of collaboration and shared values.

Felix Chen, a Principal Engineer with eight years of experience in quality, reliability and materials at Kymeta, brings a wealth of experience and a passion for pushing boundaries. When asked about his most unique experience working at Kymeta, Felix mentions the opportunity to delve into arcane science and engineering, citing examples of exploiting fracture mechanics and probability modeling in recent tasks. This blend of theoretical depth and practical application underscores Felix’s dedication to delivering bold results while maintaining fairness and integrity.

Felix presenting an invited lecture on fracture mechanics in reliability at CAMX (Composites and Advanced Materials Expo) 2023 in Atlanta, GA.

Reflecting on Kymeta’s company culture, Felix highlights the contrast from larger corporations like Microsoft and Amazon, where every day can feel like being surrounded by strangers. At Kymeta, the familiar faces and close relationships create a sense of belonging and camaraderie. The culture here embodies accountability and fairness, emphasizing contribution without sacrificing individual well-being—a balance that resonates with Felix’s values.

Felix’s connection with Kymeta’s mission and vision is palpable. He finds inspiration in the company’s goal to revolutionize the way we work, live, and interact. This drive for game-changing innovation aligns with Felix’s own journey of taking risks and delivering bold results, such as his early career decision to recommend proceeding with the impending launch of a satellite outfitted with a slightly bent waveguide, the risk of which he judged acceptable after analyzing its probability of surviving the vibration stresses of blastoff. That effort later earned him recognition.

Within his team, Felix’s collaborative spirit and mentorship are highly valued by his colleagues. Nathan Putra, a fellow engineer, describes Felix as a “crucial member” and a “great mentor” who has significantly impacted his own growth. As Pat Gallagher, a colleague, says, “Felix enjoys tackling tough questions that improve our products. In short, a fun guy to work with!”

But Felix’s value doesn’t stop there.  David Fotheringham, Director of Product Management, says:  “Felix has an unmatched enthusiasm and charisma for his craft and brings an outspoken positive voice to all interactions. He is a very deeply versed subject matter expert in electronics manufacturing, reliability, and material sciences. The mere mention of reliability is like a Bat-Signal, and he’ll magically appear within seconds, ready to jump into action.”

One of Felix’s most significant accomplishments at Kymeta has been his detailed modeling for design and field risk assessments, leading to empirical validations and a deeper understanding of reliability engineering. This journey of growth and learning reflects Kymeta’s commitment to fostering personal and professional development among its employees.

Outside of work, Felix enjoys running and playing the violin. His diverse interests and dedication to continuous learning mirror his multifaceted contributions to Kymeta’s success.

Sitting alongside concertmaster Ray Kobler of the Pacific Symphony in Orange County, CA, in 2013 performing Shostakovich’s Symphony No. 5 as part of the Pacific Symphony’s annual play-with-the-pros program.

As we celebrate Felix Chen’s journey during Asian American and Pacific Islander Heritage Month, we recognize not just his individual achievements but also the collective spirit of innovation and collaboration that defines Kymeta’s culture. Felix embodies the values and aspirations of our company, making him a true asset to our team and a source of inspiration for future endeavors.

Enjoying family vacations to (left) Loreto, Mexico in 2021 and (right) Mono Lake, CA in 2009.