People story

Of Star Trek and quantum technology

R&S Market Segment Manager Christian Dille likes exploring uncharted territory

If Rohde & Schwarz had sensory organs, Christian Dille would be one of them. As Market Segment Manager for Industry, Components, Research & Universities, his duties include listening to markets to identify future technology trends. Quantum technology is very high on his list. What motivates him and what is on his mind?

When he was 15, Christian Dille made his first career steps without knowing where it would take him. He got his hands on a popular science book about Einstein's relativity theory and he was hooked. The course was perfectly clear to his young eyes, with a degree in physics that would lay the foundation for his job at Rohde & Schwarz.

Christian Dille

"Things will suddenly become possible that were previously unimaginable."

Christian Dille, Market Segment Manager Industry, Components, Research & Universities

Trend radar with a graduate degree

"Our professors always told us that once we finished our degrees, we would be jacks of all trades", recalls Dille with a grin. "You cannot do anything perfectly well, but will be able to learn how to do anything." This broad knowledge helps the market segment manager today. First, when trying to understand which technologies are currently trending and second when evaluating whether they might be interesting to Rohde & Schwarz in the future.

A gut feeling for T&M instruments

When assessing the relevance of an invention, sustainability plays an important role. Investing time and resources into a development has to be worthwhile for the company. Experience and a solid connection to the markets, both in industry and R&D, are vital along with a strong intuition. "Facts alone are not enough to determine whether a certain trend will continue to grow in coming years", says Dille.

Dare to take risks

A certain risk is always involved. Solid risk assessment is therefore important to Dille. He sees risk as a question of mindset: "In Germany, avoiding making any mistakes is often considered the most important factor", he observed. "However, something may be a mistake but you can learn from it." This requires the high degree of freedom and trust that Rohde & Schwarz gives all of its employees. One step where Dille played a key role was anything but a mistake. "Bringing Zurich Instruments into the Rohde & Schwarz family was a quantum leap forward for the company," says the market segment manager. "It took a while and was not always easy, but it was definitely the right decision."

A Star Trek feeling on the job

Zurich Instruments is one of the latest members of the Rohde & Schwarz group of companies. The quantum computing T&M market holds enormous potential for both companies. RF signals must be generated and measured with extremely tight tolerances to effectively create and read out quantum states. Control systems for quantum computers are part of the portfolio.

The second generation of quantum technologies will not start from scratch. Nevertheless, Dille is convinced that it will be an enormous advance and a quantum leap forward: "Things will suddenly become possible that were previously unimaginable." It gives Dille a “Star Trek feeling”. Just like the tablets that were omnipresent in The Next Generation and are now an everyday item, other science fiction fantasies could also become reality.

For a golden future

Dille cannot really say how quantum technologies or other forward-looking trends that Rohde & Schwarz has identified will evolve. He has kept alive the curiosity of his 15-year-old self and it guides him as he works to achieve a prosperous future, for Rohde & Schwarz and the coming generation that includes his own children.

Learn more about Christian Dille

Have you heard of our podcast "People behind technology", where we interview interesting personalities and movers and shakers from our company? Christian Dille was one of our guests. Anyone who speaks German - or wants to learn - can find the podcast episode "Quantum Technologies with Christian Dille" here.