The Future of Transport with Hyperloop One

Hyperloop One

Img credit: Hyperloop One

The recent successful test of the Hyperloop One is proof that the future of transport is at our fingertips. The near-supersonic transit concept used magnetic levitation for the first time on the ‘DevLoop’ test track in a vacuum environment. Co-founder Shervin Pishevar claims that by achieving full vacuum, they’ve essentially created a sky in a tube as if traveling 200 000 feet in the air.

The latest test showed speeds of 308 km/h (192 mph) on the 500-meter (1,640-foot) test track in Nevada where all system components functioned as intended. The next phase is Continue reading

Swansea Bay Tidal Lagoon backed by government review

Swansea_Bay_Tidal_Lagoon_conceptNearly 2 years after the project confirmed equity funding, the Swansea Bay Tidal Lagoon has just been backed by a government commission review.

Former UK energy minister Charles Hendry has been gathering evidence for the independent enquiry for almost a year and as part of that review has visited all the potential sites and held various discussions with the industry. That report says that the project would make a strong contribution to the UK’s energy supply.

There were a host of other conclusions in the report, but some of the headline ones were: Continue reading

Supply chain opportunities come with the approval of Hinckley C

supply chain linksThe recent approval for the new nuclear plant at Hinckley Point had businesses across the region breathing a sigh of relief. Hundreds of companies locally and further afield pre-registered to become part of the supply chain solution for EDF Energy and its contractors with the aim of securing long term work in the region. With 90 major tier 1 contractors requiring further supply chain contracts of their own, the opportunities for businesses in and around the region are huge.

Many smaller local businesses took the step to improve their own staff development and training and internal processes with the aim of being ready and able to meet the demands of the project. The project which will take approximately 10 years to complete will provide more than 25000 jobs and have more than 5000 people working on site at any time. It is anticipated that it will provide 900 permanent jobs on completion. Continue reading

New machinery is an investment not a cost

new machinery metalworkDevelopments in engineering and manufacturing are moving on at a pace. Continuing research into materials and their capabilities results in demand for more complex work requirements and those requirements mean more advanced machinery.

Whether you provide one service or many, older outdated machinery may eventually lead to less efficient production and an increase in costs. There probably are some areas of manufacturing that have remained unchanged for years and so the older machinery may well still be able to work effectively, but can it compete with more modern machinery that is more efficient and technically capable? A regular review of the machinery and equipment you use should identify if your business can be improved by investing in new machinery – and it should be seen as an investment, not a cost. Newer more advanced machines may open up markets and opportunities that you previously hadn’t been able to consider, ensuring your businesses longevity. Continue reading

Subcon 2016 speakers give their thoughts on the industry

Subcon 2016Subcon 2016 is only a few weeks away now and with that in mind the organisers have asked some of their speakers their views and opinions on some key areas of manufacturing.

Not surprisingly, when asked about the biggest challenge facing the industry this year, 4 of the 7 said that they saw political and economic uncertainty as a major challenge in the coming months. The debate about staying or leaving the EU means that people are reconsidering longer term commitments and may even be delaying projects as they are unsure as to how they will be affected. Things will be clearer after the referendum in June, but there still may be longer term issues to consider depending on the outcome. It would be prudent for any business to consider the impact on them should the result be that the UK exits the EU. Of course it will take time for any exit policies and agreements to be put into place, but there’s likely to be some sort of immediate impact on existing contracts and projects. Should the vote be to stay in, then of course, things will settle back down, but it still may take a little time for that uncertainty to settle completely. Continue reading

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