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Making the World a Better Place: Engineer Helps to Shape Next Generation of Technology and Technologists

Aug 11, 2022 3 min read

When Saravanan Paramasivam graduated from university, he wanted to find an intellectually stimulating career – and inspire others toward a future in technology.

For more than 17 years, he’s found all of that and more at KLA in Chennai, India, and has had the good fortune of mentorship by KLA’s Martin Plihal, a U.S.-based physicist who has helped shape his career. Saravanan is part of a world-class data science team focused on innovations that further differentiate KLA solutions and help propel the semiconductor industry forward.

“I am immensely proud to work for a company that is advancing humanity. When I look around at the devices we use every day – from household items to medical devices in hospitals – I see how KLA empowers their functionality. Our technology helps advance society, and I take my responsibilities to the company and our challenge of building the next generation of technologists very seriously.”

Saravanan Paramasivam, manager, algorithms engineering, KLA

Saravanan leads a team of 12, based in Chennai. The dynamic group includes technologists from many disciplines – computing, physics and deep learning – who look for the next generation of critical, disruptive solutions that contribute to KLA’s product roadmap of differentiated products that drive customer success and company growth. 

“Right now, we are focused on pushing the limits of optical technology and physics,” Saravanan says. “Our team specializes in optical inspection – finding the smallest defects. We design algorithms that extract defects from the raw data produced by our optical inspectors. The resulting defect information helps our customers address manufacturing challenges, thereby enabling production of chips at higher yield and lower cost.”

The Value of a Multidisciplinary and Diverse Team

The team’s focus is global. Saravanan’s multinational group of scientists collaborate to develop holistic solutions by researching and identifying future needs of the semiconductor industry.

“We hire talent from all parts of the world because we want to be challenged by new ideas and perspectives,” he says. “Diversity brings innovation and, ultimately, better products.”

Because the team cares about delivering the most impactful solutions, they often work onsite with customers – even alongside manufacturing employees on factory floors to help them be more successful.

Inspiring the Next Generation of Technologists

Looking back at his growth from college grad to a technology leader at KLA, Saravanan embraces his responsibility to spark the curiosity of future generations and build a brain trust to take on future challenges. He mentors high school and university students as well as those pursuing higher-level degrees by helping them research and solve complex problems.

“Often when I meet students in high school, I will continue on their academic journey with them through their master’s or Ph.D program, and sometimes even see them join KLA,” Saravanan says.

Saravanan enjoys mentoring students as part of a personal commitment to promote technology among young people.

Commenting on KLA and the KLA Foundation’s focus on education equity and commitment to supporting communities where the company and its employees have a presence, Saravanan adds, “I’m very proud that KLA has positively impacted many lives through these projects. We fund a lot of education programs, covering fees for students in underprivileged schools. We also actively collaborate on research activities with professors and students at various universities.”

Learn more about building a career at KLA India in our location spotlight featuring the opening of the Artificial Intelligence Advance Computing Lab and new larger offices at RMZ Millenia-II Chennai, along with a video featuring employees during KLA India Reconnect Week.

Be sure to catch up on our previous employee spotlights in Opportunity Ahead, Making the World a Better Place, Multidisciplinary and Inclusion for All series, and don’t forget to browse the KLA careers page for the opportunities ahead.

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