Three steps to automated engineering
Increased demand for customised products and shrinking time-to-market expectations have contributed to the fundamental shift in how products are designed and created. To fulfil today’s demand for smart products and customised design, manufacturers must break away from their outdated, mass manufacturing habits and explore the world of automated engineering.
Navigating safe battery transport
There have been numerous stories in the news over recent years surrounding the transport of Li-ion batteries on planes, particularly concerning the risk of them short circuiting during a flight. In light of this, it’s easy to see why international regulations surrounding the shipment of Li-Ion batteries by air is evolving, as Michele Windsor, Marketing Manager for battery OEM Accutronics, explains.
Does the smart meter revolution need consumer approval?
After many years of planning and pilots, large scale smart-meter roll-outs are now happening across Europe. The UK government would like to have smart meters in all British homes by 2020, and a witty advertising campaign has explained the benefits of exact – rather than estimated – bills that ensure they will only pay for the energy they use. By Mark Patrick, Mouser Electronics.
The role of R&D in the manufacturing industry
Manufacturing flexibility has never been as important for industry as it is today. In a world of interconnected devices and smart factories, the ability of a manufacturer to innovate and adapt to its customers’ requirements is vital. For many manufacturers, the road to innovation starts with R&D. Here Andrew Keith, Engineering Director, Cressall Resistors, discusses the role of research and development in the manufacturing industry.
Where have all the electrical design engineers gone?
Jon Hawkins, Technical Director, Newbury Innovation - the electronic design division of Newbury Electronics - believes that there is a serious dearth of suitably qualified electrical design engineers and he is struggling to find the right candidates to join his team and enable him to grow the business.
Distributed control systems vs programmable logic controllers
The difference between distributed control systems (DCSs) and programmable logic controllers (PLCs) can be boiled down to a simple football metaphor. Your DCS is your captain. The first name on the team sheet, your DCS is dependable, hardworking and controls the whole outfit. Your PLC is more like a utility player - he's nippy and doesn't mind where he plays, but don't expect him to be as reliable as your captain. Here, Mark Proctor, managing dir...
The bigger, the better?
In 2009, Northrop Grumman Corporation successfully load tested the most powerful electric motor ever used by the US Navy. The motor is also the world's first 36.5MW high temperature superconductor (HTS) ship propulsion motor, which is double the US Navy's power rating test record. What may surprise you is the motor is less than half the size of a conventional motor, thanks to the use of HTS wire coils that are able to carry 150 times the power of...
Getting a square peg into a round hole
Have you ever watched a child puzzle over how to get the square peg in their hand into that round hole? Being a battery OEM can often raise the same quandary. However, rather than simply hammering the square peg in as it is, OEM designers take the opportunity to get innovative. Here, Anthony Robinson, engineering manager at Accutronics, looks at how customer needs drive innovation in design.
The importance of tyre safety
In 2014, tyre pressure monitoring systems (TPMS) became a legal requirement for all new passenger vehicles manufactured in Europe. Maintaining the correct tyre inflation is important for both fuel efficiency and tyre performance, but this legislation is yet to be extended to commercial vehicles, caravans and trailers. Here, Peter Tillotson, business development manager of TyrePal, discusses the lack of TPMS regulation for alternative vehicles and...
Decreasing workplace stress
Providing employees with a suitable work-life balance can be quite the challenge for employers. Incentives including office pets, flexible working hours, team building exercises or a steady routine can all have a positive impact. However, implementing this balance across a team of individuals with varying motivators, interests and backgrounds is no easy feat. On average British workers spend 43 hours a week sat at their desks and one in five admi...