Solar powered aircraft ready for flight

solar power panelsHere at PRV Engineering we have always kept a keen eye on developments in the aerospace industry.

Therefore, it was with great interest when recently, we read about the first attempt to circumnavigate the globe in an aircraft powered entirely by the sun.
After 12 years of research and testing, the Swiss engineering team Solar Impulse has unveiled the craft that will undertake the mission, next year.
Having already demonstrated the ability to fly non-stop for 24 hours in their first solar powered aircraft, engineer Andre Borschberg and psychiatrist Bertrand Piccard have unveiled a second, more efficient single-seater craft that will enable them to take turns flying for up to five consecutive days and nights at a time — including flights over the Atlantic and Pacific oceans. Continue reading

Tubular rail is the future?

22717803_mAlthough forms of rail transport can be traced back to 600BC when the ‘rutway’ was built to assist with transportation, it is widely accepted that railways, as we know them, have been in existence for almost 200 years.

Born of the Industrial Revolution, trains powered by locomotives were the fulfilment of the dreams of their creators.

Today’s railway system differs greatly to the days when steam trains could be seen chugging around the industrial heartland of Britain, transporting coal, iron and wood.

Further changes and development have been in the pipeline for some time, with Britain’s railways poised to undergo a major programme of development. Continue reading

Plans agreed for downdraft tower

Downdraft tower word cloudIt’s a fact that around 20% of global final energy consumption comes from renewable sources with more than 10% of all energy from traditional biomass, being used for heating.

At national level, at least 30 countries already have renewable energy contributing more than 20% of energy supply. Furthermore, national renewable energy markets are projected to continue to grow strongly in the coming decade and beyond. Continue reading

CNC machining and the importance of avoiding overheating

image of cnc machining

Overheating is an issue within industry, not just for those workers struggling to cope with the increasing temperatures that even a British summer can bring, but for the industry’s machinery too.

Whilst the rising heat and humidity levels create physical discomfort, they represent real danger for the electronic components of machine tools, computers and other shop equipment. Overheating and humidity can cause switch contacts to become oxidized and begin arcing. It can also cause decreased insulation resistance, leading to shorts, loss of conductivity and changes in resistance. Continue reading

The benefits of 5-Axis machining

image of Mazak 5 axis machining equipmentPRV-Engineering is constantly moving with the times and as part of the company’s recent £1.25million investment, managing director Simon Jones has added a vertical travelling column machining centre with full 5-Axis Synchronous milling ability.

Five-sided machining, also known as 3+2, is the process of setting up a part once and using a machine like the Mazak VTC800/30SR to machine five sides instead of machining the part one side at a time using a conventional 3-Axis machining centre. Continue reading