Definition of mechanical engineering

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Definition of mechanical engineering

  1. 1. Definition of Mechanical Engineering.Synthesis by Tony JOLLEY, based upon the list of attributes brainstormed by the two Mex groups inOctober 2012 at ENSISA, UHA Mulhouse, France :Mechanical Engineering is the name given to the field of endeavor representing the systematicapplication of the scientific theories, principles and practices enshrined in Mathematics, Physics,Chemistry and Technology to the solving of problems requiring a physical, manufactured/constructedoutput. In addition to such ‘hard’ sciences, it also harnesses ‘softer’, yet no less important, qualitiesand skills such as curiosity, creativity, ingenuity, determination, communication and vision which,taken together, are the drivers of innovation which have fuelled the Ascent of Man [Bronowski, J.1973] from the first crude tools such as the spear or the axe to complex machines like the Voyagerspaceship which has now left the Solar System to head for the stars.It involves a process, or more correctly, a set of processes, which involve at least two ‘pieces’operating together in a synergistic way to achieve a purpose which neither element could achieveindependently or jointly but without direct interaction with each other. This process and its outputmay [or may not] involve both movement and the application or use of power. Although the processmay vary, it usually involves: problem specification, analysis and evaluation; creative vision, R&D andsolutions conceptualization, solutions selection, experimentation, design, tooling, prototyping, testingand ultimately construction and/or production. Given such complexity, excellent communicationbetween and co-ordination of the various scientific specialities is essential: the ‘art’ of achieving thisbeing known as Project Management.Mechanical Engineering has as its intended output and outcome: innovation, systems improvementand simplification, greater efficiency and effectiveness and ultimately a better way of life for thepeople served by the engineered solution.

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