Metal Additive Manufacturing

metal additive manufacturingWhen you think of additive manufacturing, or 3D printing as it’s more commonly known, there is a tendency to immediately think of plastic products. However, increasingly metals are being used in additive manufacturing processes and in the last few years metal 3D printing has gone from strength to strength.

In powder form, a variety of metals can be used in 3D printing processes enabling a whole host of components to be made more easily. Consumer products, aerospace components and medical aids are now being routinely produced using metal additive manufacturing processes. Continue reading

Innovations in the Defence Sector

defence sector chinookInnovative engineering developments make for good news and when those developments include medical improvements it makes for even happier headlines. In the defence sector, however, the headlines are sometimes more muted, yet there are massive innovations and developments taking place.

Whatever your personal opinion about budgets and spending in the defence sector, the simple fact is that we need military vehicles and equipment on land, in the sea and in the air and they need to be equipped with up to date, modern technology and materials if they are to do their job. And it’s not just vehicles and equipment that matter. Developments in fabrics and communication methods also help personnel to do their jobs as safely as possible. Some of those innovations, while being piloted for military use, may also have huge benefits in other sectors. Continue reading

Boom Supersonic Passenger Aircraft Unveiled

Boom supersonic passenger aircraftSince the withdrawal of Concorde, there has been little news of any supersonic flight service to replace it. In fact development in supersonic passenger aircraft appeared to have stalled with cost and economic viability seeming to be one of the reasons. Concorde, despite being a beautiful aircraft was, after all, a flight service used only by the wealthier in society. But that could be set to change with the unveiling of the Boom supersonic passenger aircraft.

The Boom supersonic passenger aircraft is promising flights from London to New York in 3.5 hours with a return ticket price of $5000 – a similar price to the cost of a current business class flight. Whilst for many of us, this may still be unaffordable, when the flight time is more than halved, it’s a cost many businesses will be more than happy to pay.

The aircraft will have just 40 – 50 seats and the technological and material advancements since Concorde, mean that aircraft can be produced and maintained more cost effectively and those savings can be passed on through the lower ticket price. Continue reading

Hyperloop One agree deal with Dubai Road Transport Authority

Hyperloop capsuleHyperloop One has agreed a deal with the Dubai Road Transport Authority to assess the delivery of a hyperloop system that will reduce the time taken to travel from Dubai to Abu Dhabi.

The system which works using a vacuum-sealed pod transport system could potentially reduce the time taken to travel the 90 miles from Dubai to Abu Dhabi in as little as 12 minutes. Whilst initially the aim is to concentrate on what a hyperloop system can achieve across the United Arab Emirates (UAE), there is speculation that it could be expanded at a later date to build links with neighbouring Gulf countries. The current travel time by plane between Dubai and Saudi Arabia is 2 hours; with Hyperloop that travel time could be halved. Continue reading

The next generation of UK engineers

UK engineers bridge imageToday Sir James Dyson announced that he is to open his own institute to train engineers stating that the UK needs another million engineers in software, hardware and electronics by 2020 if UK companies are to remain competitive.

The institute, based in Malmesbury, Wiltshire will open in the Autumn of 2017 with an initial intake of 25 students and will offer a four year engineering degree in partnership with the University of Warwick. Students will be paid a salary while studying and will not pay tuition fees, but most importantly in the world of engineering, students will work on live projects alongside mentors and research staff allowing them to get hands on, real life experience. Continue reading