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Issue 70

March 2017

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An artist's impression of the Rosetta spacecraft approaching comet 67P/Churyumob-Gerasimenko.
  • Aerospace
  • Issue 70

Communicating with outer space

The Royal Academy of Engineering awarded a team at BAE Systems the Major Project Award in June 2016 for their development of a powerful satellite modem system, pivotal in enabling the precise control of the pioneering Rosetta spacecraft and the first-ever soft landing of a spacecraft on a comet.

The Stravos Niarchos Foundation Cultural Centre.
  • Civil & structural
  • Arts & culture
  • Issue 70

Design-led innovation and sustainability

The Stavros Niarchos Foundation Cultural Center, the new home of the Greek National Opera and the Greek National Library, boasts an innovative, slender canopy that is the largest and most highly engineered ferrocement structure in the world.

A wind turbine inside a testing factory.
  • Design & manufacturing
  • Environment & sustainability
  • Issue 70

Future-proofing the next generation of wind turbine blades

Before deploying new equipment in an offshore environment, testing is vital and can reduce the time and cost of manufacturing longer blades. Replicating the harsh conditions within the confines of a test hall requires access to specialist, purpose-built facilities.

Four British Women's cyclists, cycling in a line in front of a crowd, in the velodrome at the Rio Olympics.
  • Sports & leisure
  • Issue 70

Going for gold

The success of Great Britain’s cycling team at the 2016 Rio Summer Olympic Games was celebrated, but what about the closely guarded technology that contributed to their success? The engineering approaches taken to shave as much time as possible off the clock are spoken about by Professor Tony Purnell.

Quick read

A group of chords plugged in to an adaptor.
  • Electricals & electronics
  • Technology & robotics
  • How does that work?
  • Issue 70

Powerline networking

Most homes and businesses use wireless networks so powerline networking, which uses electrical wiring as a data network, may be considered a redundant technology. However, it’s a simple technology that complements wireless by reaching those areas that might be beyond a Wi-Fi network.

A headshot of Orla Murphy next to a blue car.
  • Electricals & electronics
  • How I got here
  • Issue 70

Q&A: Orla Murphy

Orla Murphy is an audio engineer at Jaguar Land Rover. Her role focuses on optimising and improving the sound systems in the company’s vehicles, combining her passions for science, maths and music.

A person with a siemens jacket on wearing a virtual reality headset and a handheld controller to practise engineering.
  • Technology & robotics
  • Software & computer science
  • Issue 70

How virtual reality is changing engineering

Virtual reality is now well established in multiple industries and sectors, from entertainment, communications and education to design, scientific research and defence. Professor Anthony Steed explores how companies use immersive tech to transform their engineering processes.

Armourgel bodysuit with extra protection around the elbows and back.
  • Materials
  • Innovation Watch
  • Issue 70

Thin and flexible but tough protection

Armourgel, an energy-absorbing material that can be incorporated into clothing, is being adapted from its origins in sportswear into a protective device for the hip that aims to protect the weak and fragile hip bones of osteoporosis patients and frequent fallers.

Julia King, Baroness Brown of Cambridge DBE FREng speaking at Aston University.
  • Materials
  • Environment & sustainability
  • Profiles
  • Issue 70

Forging links between academia and industry

For Julia King, Baroness Brown of Cambridge DBE FREng, materials science has been a common theme in a career that has taken in the academic world at all levels, to becoming a vice-chancellor, along with time in the higher echelons of corporate engineering at Rolls-Roce.