Get To Know Our Interns: Davin Duke
1. Let’s start off by Introducing yourself.
Hey, my name is Davin. I’m actually a Colorado native, and I am going to be a Senior at University of Colorado in Colorado Springs. I’m going to major in Mechanical Engineering and minor in Aerospace.
2. What is your internship role and what do you do?
I am the Mechanical Engineering Intern, and I’ll be working on making a scale model of the docking arms for the LEX program. On top of that, not only do I get to kind of redesign and rescale everything for 3D manufacturing, but I also get to put everything together by hand and program the motors and do electrical components as well.
3. What made you decide to apply to be an intern at Astroscale US?
What made me decide to be an intern at Astroscale was that I knew I needed an internship for the summer. I needed to get good experience, and I was just cruising along because I want to do something space oriented, and I found Astroscale, the Astro in Astroscale really stuck out. And I was like, oh, let me try that one. So really it was just anything that was space oriented. And as soon as I saw Astro, I was like, oh, I’m applying for this one. And it turns out that they do space sustainability, which is really sick. And I’ve done a couple of internships as well with sustainability. So.
4. What does a typical day look like for you?
A typical day for me looks like a long drive in. Not really, just about an hour, but as soon as I get here, I kind of just flop down in front of the Solidworks station. So at this point in my project, I’m really just cranking out hours and redesigning the mechanical components and everything, and really just make sure everything fits together. I do get a few days where I get to work from home. And during those days I really just do a little bit of extra research on what manufacturer will be best for the model that we have, and just learning a little bit more about how to use Solidworks or how I’m going to wire everything up.
5. What is something that surprised you during your first couple of weeks?
Something that surprised me during my first couple of weeks is really, I guess, just the environment at Astroscale. I mean the building alone is just really nice and new. And as soon as you sit down and you get all this, you get new equipment and it just feels like they really are ready for you to be here and take care of you. And I mean, everybody’s just welcoming and ready to learn and ready to share their knowledge, and just the open atmosphere and kind of just the comfort level.
6. What are you looking forward to?
What I’m looking forward to is really just learning about space and what it takes to not only just like build something and get it to space, but all the different aspects: the business, the policies, the marketing, and just everything that goes within the realm of a space sustainability itself is just kind of what I’m really excited to learn what all that has, like just the complexity of it all.
7. What are things that you have learned outside of work that you have integrated and applied into your time here at Astroscale US?
A few things that I’ve learned outside of work outside of school would just be 3D printing, learning how to manipulate a 3D model so that it can be manufactured for 3D printing. And that’s a big part of my project is making the scale model, the ideal manufacturer just to 3D print it. So that was one thing that I brought in. On top of that, it’s just a little bit of knowledge from school, just a little bit. A few of the classes you can really just kind of take the intuition that you’ve gained from that and when designing stuff. So bringing it, bringing that all together.
8. What do yo like to do when you are not working?
I like to do a lot of things when I’m not working. I, for one, especially, I’ve always been a skateboarder. So any moment I get, especially on my hour long drive home, I like to take a break and go skateboarding. Me and my wife, we play soccer together. And so that’s also a big thing we like to do. We like to snowboard and we like to hike, take our dog out, make sure the dog’s happy. So really just anything active, but also down to chill out as well.
9. What is your favorite space movie?
My favorite space movie is probably Guardians of the Galaxy, super funny and also super adventurous. And it’s really cool to see all the different places they go and all the different types of living creatures that are out in the universe, at least in the Marvel universe.
10. Controversial question: Star Trek or Star Wars?
I’m not really a big fan of either, but if I had to pick one, it’d be Star Wars.
11. Advice for recent college grads or potential interns?
If I had any advice for any recent grads or potential interns, my biggest advice would be really just the hardest part for me was just getting to the internship. I feel like once I got here, it’s like, okay, cool. Now it’s time to learn. Now it’s time to embrace what they have for me and what I can kind of throw back at them and put my two cents in. But I would just say, try to just get that internship first, do the application, spend your time doing a good resume specifically for each internship. And, if they’re not replying back, give him a call, give them another email. And I would say my biggest advice is just get that, get working on, getting the internship first. Cause then once you get here, you really just seal the deal, and now you’re just cruising and learning.
12. Anything else you’d like to add?