A biomedical engineer by training, Dr Tay Zhi Wei shared with us more about his role at the Institute of Bioengineering and Bioimaging (IBB) and the potential applications of his work in medical imaging.Q: What does a typical day at IBB look like for you?A: We develop magnetic devices for imaging and therapy, so a typical day would be mainly focused on device prototyping, testing and data analysis. I am also involved in in vitro and in vivo experiments to validate our devices for various applications. Q: Tell us more about your team and the research projects you are currently working on.A: I lead a small team and we work on collaborative research projects with other institutes, with a focus on positive-contrast magnetic imaging of nanoparticle labels for various biomedical applications. Our overall vision is to advance multi-functional magnetic nanomedicine – imaging, sensing, actuation and therapy – by harnessing the unique strengths of magnetism. Q: What are some of your most notable achievements?A: I was fortunate to discover a new magnetic scanning method and a superferromagnetic mechanism for nanoparticle signal generation. Both discoveries allowed for order-of-magnitude improvements to the imaging performance in the new field of Magnetic Particle Imaging, thus enabling brighter and sharper in vivo imaging. Q: What does good leadership mean to you?A: Good leadership is about motivating and aligning people towards a common goal. Since I work on magnets, I will use a “magnetic” (albeit cheesy) analogy: A large magnet is strongest when all the “mini-magnets” within it are aligned in same direction, complementing each other rather than opposing each other. The best leaders nurture their team members and foster a great culture, such that “permanent magnetization” remains even when they are gone. Q: What are some hobbies you enjoy outside of work?A: Outside of work, I enjoy ice skating and travel, especially to enjoy winter sports such as snowboarding. I also travel to catch seasonal sights like Sakura (cherry blossoms) and Momiji (Japanese maple). Q: What does the A*STAR scholarship mean to you? A: I am grateful for the generous support of the A*STAR scholarship which has given me the opportunity to pursue my undergraduate and Ph.D. studies at Duke University and the University of California Berkeley respectively. The scholarship has also opened doors for me to train under the leading experts in my field and network at numerous overseas conferences. Q: Who would fit in well in your lab?A: Our projects are mainly focused on device development and biological applications, thus those with a background in engineering and biology would be a good fit for our team. If you would like to explore a career with IBB, you can view the available positions at A*STAR’s Career Portal. To enquire about Magnetic Particle Imaging, you can contact Dr Tay at email@example.com. If you would like to explore potential collaboration with IBB, please contact Alex via WhatsApp at +65 9062 9842.