• Question: What processes have you been involved in or singularly created that enhanced engineering performance capabilities? (I just like to know this from the view of an engineering who is in real action)

    Asked by MiracleA on 26 Mar 2021.
    • Photo: Emma Robertson

      Emma Robertson answered on 26 Mar 2021:

      No processes in particular, but I’ll often review processes for using our products to make sure that people can actually use them!

    • Photo: Anna Garcia-Teruel

      Anna Garcia-Teruel answered on 26 Mar 2021:

      I am not sure this what the question was aiming for but I have been involved in a pair of activities to make the every day workflow easier/better so that engineers are more connected, and better informed to enhance collaboration and avoid work repetition.

      I set-up a buddy system in our department, so that new doctorate students would be paired with more senior students to improve the network of people in our institute, facilitate the start of new students and avoid people feeling isolated which is a common problem in univeristy research where you are working by yourself on a single problem. This, I believe, enhanced the engineering performance capacilities, since people were better connected, knew whom to talk to for different problems etc.

      I have also helped set up a clearer and more systematic file storage system and a data base in my particular research group, so that researchers can find and access the information they need more easily and avoid doing the same work someone already did again.

      If this was aiming for an answer regarding enhancing the capabilities of an engineering solution, I have developed optimisation algorithms that automatically generate better performing wave energy converter designs. I worked with a company and applied these algorithms to their device, which resulted in a 40% improvement in the amount of power they could generate.

    • Photo: Sarah-Jane Potts

      Sarah-Jane Potts answered on 27 Mar 2021:

      For my doctorate I worked on improving the scienctific understanding of screen printing so that it could be optimised for a range of functional inks (mostly conductive inks). During this I created something I called the screen printing visualiser (SPV). This is a minature custom built screen printer which could be used with a high speed imaging camera to look at how the complex sheer thinning and viscoelastic inks (inks which flow earier as they are stirred faster and behave like an elastic solid when treated a certain way). The SPV was able to capture exactly how these inks behaved and how this behaviour changed with different inks and press settings. I have now used this new found knowledge to help me improve press settings and ink properties when making printed solar cells so they perform better.