Engineering

Category

Lego: A Solid History to Build Upon

Claire Greenhouse takes a look at good old fashioned Lego.  Why do we have such a fascination for a post war toy so simple in concept, and yet so brilliantly executed in terms of both design and marketing? The chances are you or a friend had a set or two as a child, played with it at school, or had had the misfortune to tread on a rogue piece first thing in the morning if your small children have a set or three themselves. If you want to know more about this wonder toy, read on.   Introduction There are a reported 600 billion tiny plastic Lego bricks in the...

The future of electrical distribution

Cheryl Dyer Ballard examines the next generation of electrical distribution. In the United Kingdom, the National Grid was first established in 1901, and has grown into the behemoth that we all use in this country today.  Blissfully unaware for the most part of its impact on our lives, we only truly appreciate it in its absence, during power cuts or industrial action. But what if the system that we have become so used to suddenly fails or misbehaves to the point where it is no longer a viable system? And how will future systems work beyond what we know as the grid today?  Cheryl looks at one 21st century approach to...

The engineer’s guide to 3D printing

Steven Parham takes looks at 3D printing.  This process has literally been a game changer for thousands of engineers and other professions over the past decade, thanks to the possibilities that the technology has brought to the fore. Something that would have been considered fanciful or downright impossible up until a few years ago is not only a reality, but an affordable proposition.  Steven takes a look at what is involved, how some of these processes work, and how to go about making your own 3D prints. Introduction In the last 10 years, 3D printing has finally come of age. The technology has become both widespread and a cost effective...

Women in Engineering

Claire Greenhouse takes a look at the increasing roles for women in engineering.  Until relatively recently, the number of women taking roles and making careers in engineering were relatively few and far between. Until then, engineering was seen as a male reserve, and in that respect, a female engineer would have been considered something of an oddity, even perhaps an oddball. In these enlightened times of course, more engineers than ever are female. Claire looks at how things have progressed since the turn of the millenium in engineering. Introduction As the ICE begins its ‘Year of Engineering’ events, the website (https://www.ice.org.uk/ice-200) encouragingly shows a picture of a girl around the...

BIM: What you need to know

Steven Parham takes looks at BIM: Building Information Modelling. To a vast number of engineers, the subject is somewhat polarising. Some have embraced the changes that this legislation will eventually bring to civil engineering projects and the wider world, whereas others dread the impact that this legal requirement for large scale civil projects is having. So, what is BIM, why has it been implemented, and what will this mean for current and future building projects?   Introduction The date is the 31st May 2011. The Cabinet Office publishes one of the most far reaching documents in the history of construction in the United Kingdom. The reason? To modernise the construction...