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Mechanical Engineering Information

Mechanical engineering is one of the broadest and oldest engineering disciplines. Learn more about what it can offer.

As electrical engineering is linked with electrical systems, mechanical engineering is correlated with mechanical systems. As an engineering field, the latter makes use of principles in materials science and physics in order to come up with analysis, manufacture, maintenance and design of mechanical systems. This is also that engineering branch that takes charge of heat production to be used for the design and operation of certain machines and tools. It is also considered as one of the oldest professions under engineering disciplines.

Mechanical engineering became popular as a field of discipline during the 19th century European industrial revolution. Despite being linked to this recent event in history however, its roots can be traced to thousands of years ago. Now, it has been used in the study of mechatronics, nanotechnology and composites. It sometimes has overlapping applications with those of other engineering field namely civil engineering, electrical engineering, aerospace engineering and petroleum engineering.

Core concepts studied in mechanical engineering

Aside from emphasizing more on designing mechanical concepts, the field offers core concepts such as mechanics, thermodynamics, materials science, structural analysis and kinematics. These core principles are applied by mechanical engineers in their chosen field and often combine them with tools like computer-aided engineering and product lifecycle management. The fusion of the concepts and the tools result to the design and analysis of industrial equipment and machinery, manufacturing plants, motorized vehicles, heating and cooling systems, robotics, watercraft and aircraft and medical devices.

Educational requirements for aspiring mechanical engineers

While degrees in mechanical engineering are offered worldwide, there are some variations as to the length of time by which the course can be completed. In the cases of China, England, Bangladesh, India, Pakistan, Nepal and North America, the course will take between four to five years to finish. Finishing the bachelor's degree will take five to six years in Portugal, Spain and other parts of South America.

Although there are noted differences in the length of time by which engineering courses can be finished depending on the country where one enrolls, there are still similarities when it comes to the topics covered in the course. Fundamental subjects include statics and dynamics, instrumentation and measurement, fluid mechanics and fluid dynamics, mechanism design, manufacturing engineering, mathematics, electrotechnology and design engineering.

In addition to these, mechanical engineers are also expected to understand basic concepts from physics, chemistry, civil engineering, electrical engineering and chemical engineering. Calculus may also be included in the course curriculum, together with linear and abstract algebra as well as differential geometry.

Specialized courses or programs may also be offered to those interested to become mechanical engineers. These topics include transport and logistics, robotics, cryogenics, automotive engineering, fuel technology, biomechanics, optics and vibration. Community and research projects may also be required. Internships may also be necessary. Same is true with cooperative education.

Mechanical engineering licenses may also be available through the state, province or national government. This certification is required to make sure that engineers have the technical knowledge and experience when it comes to the practice of this profession.

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