• How robots can help meet the future challenges of infrastructure

     Professor Rob Richardson, Director of the National Facility for Innovative Robotic Systems at the University of Leeds, discusses the role robots can have in maintaining the built environment.
    When key infrastructure that we rely on every day fails, people get frustrated and businesses’ efficiency is reduced. Innovative robotic engineering can help, but what are the priorities and how can they be approached?
    This is the challenge the University of Leeds, working with the UK robot
  • Solar space plane makes public debut

    SolarStratos, a solar-powered aircraft designed to reach the stratosphere, has been unveiled at a ceremony in Payerne, Switzerland.Weighing 450kg, the two-seater plane has a wingspan of 24.8m and is covered with 22m2 of photovoltaic panels, operating with a cell efficiency of 22-24 per cent. These power a 32kW electric motor, which drives the 2.2m propellers. Lithium-ion batteries provide 20kWh of storage.
    The project is the brainchild of Raphael Domjan, who in 2012 became the first person to ci
  • £13m for new surgical technology centre

    University College London (UCL) has been awarded over £13m from Wellcome and the Engineering and Physical Sciences Research Council (EPSRC) to develop a special centre focussed on the development of new surgical technologies.
    The Wellcome/EPSRC Centre for Surgical and Interventional Sciences at UCL will bring together a wide team of engineering and clinical experts working to develop a range of new technologies. It will have a particular focus on intraoperative imaging and sensing, data fu
  • Tata and union chiefs reach deal to save Port Talbot steel jobs

    Tata Steel UK will continue operations at its blast furnace in Port Talbot following an agreement with trade unions on proposals to reform workers’ pensions.This proposal comes eight months after Tata announced their original intention to sell their UK steel assets.
    Starting next week, Tata Steel UK will start consultation on the proposal to close the British Steel Pension Scheme, with employees offered a defined contribution scheme in its place.
    Subject to the structural de-risking and de
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  • INSIGHT FROM FLIGHTGLOBAL: World air forces on the rise

    A modest rise in the global military aircraft fleet over the year belies global tensions, from the middle east to the disputed territory in Asia, which could drive procurement programmes.
  • News story: Accelerating Defence Innovation

    Minister Harriett Baldwin today challenged academics and businesses to help the UK save lives, money and win battles in the information age in the latest development of the MOD’s Innovation Initiative.The Minister launched the Defence and Security Accelerator in front of 300 delegates at the inaugural Maritime Enterprise Innovation Scotland Conference (MEISC) at the University of Strathclyde.Minister for Defence Procurement Harriett Baldwin said:The Defence Innovation Initiative and £
  • News story: Mountaineering military team take on Nepal for medical research

    The team, made up of members of the Royal Navy, Army, and RAF, gathered at the Royal Geographic Society last night to wrap up the expedition which they undertook earlier this year.The expedition involved investigating the effects of low oxygen levels on human physiology, and developing a greater understanding of how the body responds to this in both health and disease.Welcoming the team’s work, Defence Minister Mark Lancaster said:Our Armed Forces are ready to be deployed anywhere in the w
  • Push for east Aleppo aid drops using GPS-guided parachutes

    Politicians call for American air-drop technology known as JPads to be used to supply besieged Syrian civilians, but militaries reported to be reluctant Western diplomats have conceded that there are no technical obstacles to a plan to deliver airdrops of food and medicine to Aleppo using a GPS-guided parachute system, but the scheme has been stalled in the face of reluctance among military commanders and an absence of political will.Diplomats and military from six governments – including
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  • Understanding how electric fields make flames cleaner could improve power stations

    A study of the combustion of methane and the compounds formed when it burns could lead the development of cleaner gas turbines for power stations, according to researchers from the King Abdullah University of Science and Technology.
    The flat flame used for the KAUST team’s studyBurning hydrocarbons is a more complex process than it seems. If combustion is complete, then the products are carbon dioxide and water vapour, which may be undesirable in the atmosphere but are at least well unders
  • Chile AF signs deal for six S-70i helicopters

    Sikorsky will deliver six Polish-made S-70i helicopters through 2018 to the Chilean Air Force after completing three months of contract negotiations.
  • Illustrious farewell: aircraft carrier leaves port bound for scrapyard

    Ex-crewmembers gather in Portsmouth to wave goodbye to Royal Navy vessel that is last of Invincible-class fleetThe former Royal Navy aircraft carrier HMS Illustrious, known to her crews down the years as Lusty, left Portsmouth naval base for the last time on Wednesday, bound for a Turkish scrapyard. Former crewmembers and their families were joined by onlookers on the harbour walls to give three cheers and wave goodbye as the vessel set off.The Illustrious, launched on the Tyne by Swan Hunter in
  • First H135 Juno helicopter arrives in UK

    Airbus Helicopters UK has now received the first examples of both the helicopter types it will supply for the UK s Military Flight Training System (MFTS) requirement.
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  • Trump plans to renegotiate new Air Force One pricing

    US President-elect Donald Trump says he will lead pricing negotiations with Boeing on a programme to replace two 747-200-derived VC-25As serving as executive transports also known as Air Force One.
  • Elta, Airbus offer C295 operators AEW conversion

    Current operators of the Airbus Defence & Space C295 are being given the option to convert some of their aircraft into an airborne early warning and control (AEW&C) configuration developed with Israel Aerospace Industries' Elta Systems subsidiary.
  • Making waves: life as a broadcast engineer

    David McKenna recently embarked on a graduate training programme with Babcock Media Services, where he works on the technology behind the BBC World Service, as well as the fibre, satellite and internet delivery of Babcock’s Formula E broadcasts.At 32, David’s route into engineering has been slightly unorthodox, and is proof that a career in STEM can begin at a later age. The Student Engineer caught up with him to find out more.What degree do you have and where did you study?
    I studie
  • UK allocates funding to Protector programme

    The UK Ministry of Defence has awarded 100 million ($126 million) to General Atomics Aeronautical Systems to kick off the Royal Air Force s Protector unmanned air vehicle programme.
  • Press release: Joint statement on Aleppo: 7 December 2016

    Joint statement from the leaders of Canada, France, Germany, Italy, the United Kingdom and the United States on the situation in Aleppo:A humanitarian disaster is taking place before our very eyes. Some 200,000 civilians, including many children, in eastern Aleppo are cut off from food and medicine supplies. Aleppo is being subjected to daily bombings and artillery attacks by the Syrian regime, supported by Russia and Iran. Hospitals and schools have not been spared. Rather, they appear to be th
  • Speech: Prime Minister's speech to the Gulf Co-operation Council 2016

    I am delighted to be here in Manama, following in the footsteps of His Royal Highness the Prince of Wales in celebrating 2 centuries of relations between Bahrain and the United Kingdom. And I am very grateful to His Majesty King Hamad for bestowing on me this special honour – to be invited to address the leaders of the Gulf Co-operation Council.We meet at a time of great change in the world. Political change, economic change, social change; in almost every sphere we are confronted with cha
  • Reflecting on the power of collaboration

    EPSRC’s Prof Tom Rodden reflects on The Engineer’s 2016 Collaborate To Innovate initiative
    It has been a great pleasure to be involved with Collaborate to Innovate. The initiative allows us to recognise and showcase some of the UK’s world-leading engineering research and innovation – and we have much to be proud of.
    Read all about the shortlisted and winning entries here 
    When internationally benchmarked, the UK punches above its weight as a research nation[i]. The U
  • Cambridge University’s IfM joins new hub for medicines manufacturing

    Cambridge University’s Institute for Manufacturing is to play a key role in a new research hub aimed at transforming the way medicines and other high value materials are made.
    The hub, led by Strathclyde University, is one of six in the UK announced this week that is to share £60m of funding as part of the government’s industrial strategy.
    The Future Continuous Manufacturing and Advanced Crystallisation (CMAC) Hub has been set up to develop manufacturing processes for high-valu
  • Lightweight composite machine-tool could reduce aerospace manufacturing costs

    The Advanced Manufacturing Research Centre in Sheffield has developed what is believed to be the world’s first carbon composite reconfigurable machine-tool.
    The machine tool uses parallel kinematics rather than the more common serial linkLightweight and made using a modular design, the tool can be easily moved around by two people and, according to the AMRC, could reduce tooling costs in aerospace and other industries.
    The tool was developed in collaboration with system manufacturer Execho
  • Video of the week: Jumping robot mimics bush babies and parkour

    Berkeley engineers have designed a robot that mimics how bush babies jump, and which can spring off walls in movements inspired by parkour and freerunning.Known as Salto (saltatorial locomotion on terrain obstacles), the robot weighs 100g and is 26cm tall when fully extended. To jump, Salto crouches in a similar way to galagos (also known as bush babies), who store energy in their tendons to help them jump. The robot uses a motor to drive a spring, which loads via a leg mechanism to create the k
  • Jumping robot mimics bush babies and parkour

    Berkeley engineers have designed a robot that mimics how bush babies jump, and which can spring off walls in movements inspired by parkour and freerunning.Known as Salto (saltatorial locomotion on terrain obstacles), the robot weighs 100g and is 26cm tall when fully extended. To jump, Salto crouches in a similar way to galagos (also known as bush babies), who store energy in their tendons to help them jump. The robot uses a motor to drive a spring, which loads via a leg mechanism to create the k
  • News story: Illustrious leaves Portsmouth to make way for Queen Elizabeth

    The former HMS Illustrious will be saluted by onlookers at Portsmouth’s Round Tower as she leaves the harbour after a career spanning 32 years and more than 900,000 nautical miles.Commissioned in 1982 for the successful campaign to liberate the Falkland Islands, she took part in a range of operations until 2014, including evacuating Britons from Lebanon in 2006 and delivering humanitarian aid after Typhoon Haiyan devastated the Philippines in 2013.Illustrious is one of the Invincible Class
  • Press release: PM: We are clear-eyed about threat from Iran

    The Prime Minister will tell Gulf leaders in Bahrain today that she is clear eyed about the threat Iran poses to the Gulf and the Middle East while underlining the importance of the nuclear deal struck last year.Speaking at the Gulf Co-operation Council, the Prime Minister will say that the UK is firmly committed to our strategic partnership with the Gulf and to working with Gulf partners to counter the threat from Iran and its destabilising activities in the region.The Prime Minister will make
  • Trump says new Air Force One too costly: ‘Cancel order!’

    President-elect Donald Trump called Tuesday for the cancellation of a multi-billion dollar Boeing contract to build the next Air Force One, calling the ballooning costs “ridiculous.”...
    This is summary only, please visit DefenceTalk.com for more defense news, discussion and military pictures!
  • Marine's conviction for killing Afghan insurgent could be quashed

    Courts martial appeal court to hear case of Sgt Alexander Blackman, known as Marine A, again after new evidence was presented about his mental healthA former Royal Marine serving a life sentence for murdering a wounded Afghan insurgent faces the “real possibility” of having his conviction quashed following the presentation of new evidence, an independent review has found. The Criminal Cases Review Commission (CCRC) has confirmed it is referring the conviction of Sgt Alexander Blackma
  • Speech: Prime Minister's speech to HMS Ocean ship's company in Bahrain

    This is a particularly special moment for me because it is my first time as Prime Minister on board a Royal Navy ship.And it’s a proud one too as I have the privilege of talking to you – our brave men and women who put yourselves on the line to keep our people safe and protect Britain’s interests around the world.Britain takes enormous pride in our Royal Navy – known the world over for its professionalism and expertise – and for the dedication and courage of its sai
  • Sussex student takes home Autocar award

    A mechanical engineering student from Sussex University has won this year’s Autocar-Courland Next Generation Award for his stacked graphene battery design.Joshua de Wit received the honour at this year’s Society of Motor Manufacturers and Traders’ (SMMT) annual dinner. Stacked graphene batteries could enable electric vehicle charging times at a fraction of today’s technology. The flexibility of the material could also help reduce the environmental impact of EVs production
  • 3D printed lenses offer low-cost enhancement of ultrasound

    3-D printed resin lenses open up new possibilities for ultrasound in diagnostics and therapy, according to Singapore team
    The 3D printed lenses generate enhanced ultrasound or photoacoustic waves which current ultrasound machines are unable to doThe abilities of ultrasound waves in medicine can be enhanced by directing them through 3D printed lenses, according to researchers at Nanyang Technological University in Singapore. The lenses, which are made of resin, allow the waves to be brought to a
  • Press release: PM to boost defence and security co-operation with Gulf allies

    To keep British people safe at home and overseas, the Prime Minister will today (6 December 2016) announce a robust new package of joint measures with the Gulf to tackle terrorism and bolster our joint security.At a meeting of leaders from the 6 Gulf countries in Bahrain, the Prime Minister will announce new co-operation with the Gulf to strengthen aviation security, specifically by working with these countries to more effectively implement traveller screening systems and sharing expertise to ma
  • Supercapacitors to result from research to link prosthetics to nervous system

    Research into bionic limbs has validated a material that could lead to very high-density supercapacitors with applications in electric vehicles and biosensors.The two-year research project was conducted at Surrey University and overseen by Dr Donald Highgate, co-founder of Augmented Optics, the company that commissioned the study.
    Jim Heathcote, chief executive of Augmented Optics and its subsidiary, Supercapacitor Materials Ltd, explained that he and  Highgate were interested in developing
  • BAE Systems kicks off next stage of unmanned air trials

    A Jetstream 31 aircraft is being used as a flying testbed for the next phase of BAE Systems’ unmanned aircraft trials.
    (Credit: Ray Troll/BAE Systems)Over the course of 17 test flights from Warton, Lancashire, to Inverness, the company will test the capability of its autonomous technologies to control the Jetstream via satellite link. Two pilots will be on board to operate the plane for take off and landing, along with two engineers to assess the performance of the unmanned systems. Suppor
  • This week’s poll: UK rail revamp

    Transport Secretary Chris Grayling has unveiled plans for a fundamental change to the way the UK’s rail and track operations are run.
    Currently, train services on the UK network are run under franchise by private Train Operating Companies (TOCs) whilst Network Rail, which is a public body, runs the infrastructure.
    Under the government’s proposals, whilst TOCs and Network Rail will continue to exist separately, each rail franchise will be run by a joint management team including repre
  • Last week’s poll: collaborative research

    Our poll on collaborative research showed a spread of opinion, with the largest group of respondents believing that defining boundaries was the most difficult factor.
    We had a relatively modest response to our poll last week, with only 182 readers replying. Within this sample, there was a wide variation of responses with no clear winner; this is obviously a complex matter and perhaps respondents were replying based on their own varied experiences. The largest group of respondents, 25 per cent, t
  • UK confirms €1.4bn of spending in ESA projects

    Europe has reaffirmed its commitment to the ExoMars mission, Earth observation and the international space station as science ministers pledge funds to the European Space Agency.
    The ExoMars rover will be built in the UKThe UK is to invest heavily in space programs agreed at the ESA ministerial meeting in Lucerne last week. The UK Space Agency is to spend a total of €1.4bn on ESA missions over the next five years. British-built satellites for Earth observation, navigation, and telecommunica
  • UK confirms €1.4 billion of spending in ESA projects

    Europe has reaffirmed its commitment to the ExoMars mission, Earth observation and the international space station as science ministers pledge funds to the European Space Agency.
    The ExoMars rover will be built in the UKThe UK is to invest heavily in space programs agreed at the ESA ministerial meeting in Lucerne last week. The UK Space Agency is to spend a total of €1.4 billion on ESA missions over the next five years. British-built satellites for Earth observation, navigation, and telecom
  • Dutch join Norwegians on F-35 brake chute development

    The Netherlands will join Norway on the development of the brake chute for the Lockheed Martin F-35, the Norwegian government confirmed last week.
  • University of Huddersfield to lead multi-million pound metrology initiative

    The University of Huddersfield is to lead a new £30m research centre to help put the UK at the forefront of metrology and measurement technology.
    One of six new research hubs created by funding from Engineering and Physical Sciences Research Council (EPSRC) and a number of industrial partners The Future Metrology Hub will be based in the University’s Centre for Precision Technologies, and will help address major challenges facing UK manufacturing.
    The University of Huddersfield&rsquo
  • Technical apprenticeships – will three million be enough?

     Graham Schuhmacher MBE is an Independent Skills Training Partner and former Head of Learning Services at Rolls-Royce. In an article based on topics from his new book, he examines the challenges involved in meeting the skills shortage. 
    The problem with asking if three million more apprentices are going to be enough is that it depends. It depends on the performance of the skills system in delivering them, and more critically, moving back to a position where a majority of comp
  • Israel may acquire more F-15Is: sources

    Israel is contemplating the acquisition of additional Boeing F-15Is to support its future combat requirements.
  • PICTURE: Paveway IV dropped from F-35

    Raytheon Systems' Paveway IV laser-guided bomb has been dropped from a Lockheed Martin F-35B, paving the way for integration of the weapon on the UK s future Joint Strike Fighter fleet.
  • News story: Prime Minister’s visit to Bahrain and the Gulf Co-operation Council

    Prime Minister Theresa May is attending the annual meeting of leaders from the Gulf Co-operation Council. She will be the first British Prime Minister and only the third Western leader to be invited to attend and address leaders at the summit.On her 2-day visit to Bahrain, the Prime Minister will seek to open a new chapter in relations between the UK and the Gulf States, which include Saudi Arabia, Kuwait, the United Arab Emirates, Qatar, Bahrain, and Oman. She will renew centuries old ties and
  • Nigeria receives first Super Mushshaks

    The Pakistan Aeronautical Complex (PAC) Kamra handed over the first four MFI-17 Super Mushshak trainers to the Nigerian air force (NAF) on 5 December.
  • Nigeria receives first Super Mushshak

    The Pakistan Aeronautical Complex (PAC) Kamra handed over the first four MFI-17 Super Mushshak trainers to the Nigerian air force (NAF) on 5 December.
  • Report identifies maintenance opportunities for subsea firms

    Operations and maintenance – particularly inspection, repair and maintenance activities – have been identified in a new report as the highest potential area for subsea companies to diversify into offshore wind.Titled ‘Subsea Technological Challenges in Offshore Wind’, the report from NSRI (National Subsea Research Initiative) highlights opportunities the offshore wind industry holds for UK subsea companies, with a technology roadmap outlining the way ahead with industry-d
  • Siemens’ Hull wind plant hailed as giant leap for UK sector

    The opening of new Siemens’ offshore wind plant in Hull has been hailed as a major step forward for the UK’s offshore wind sector.
    Business secretary Greg Clark with the first 75m blade to roll off the production lineThe £310m redevelopment of Alexandra Dock by Siemens and Associated British Ports will create 1,000 jobs, 700 of which have already been filled by local people.
    The site – which represents Hull’s largest-ever inward investment and is one of Siemens&rsqu
  • MoD to invest £100m in drone programme

    Defence secretary Michael Fallon has announced a £100m deal that will see the RAF’s UAV capability enhanced with the introduction of Protector drones.
    (Credit: Crown Copyright)Developed by General Atomics Aeronautical Systems, the Protector will replace the UK’s current fleet of 10 Reaper drones, which are also manufactured by the California-based company. Last year it was announced that the new fleet would also double the UK’s capability, with 20 Protectors expected to c
  • OPINION: Western fighter manufacturers can breathe easier

    Western fighter manufacturers can breathe a collective sigh of relief as 2016 draws to a close.
  • North Korea artillery drill targets South, Seoul unveils sanctions

    North Korean leader Kim Jong-Un conducted a large-scale artillery drill simulating an attack on the South Korean capital and other targets, as Seoul and Tokyo on Friday unveiled fresh unilateral...
    This is summary only, please visit DefenceTalk.com for more defense news, discussion and military pictures!

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