Charging into the future

March 11, 2020

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The number of electric vehicles being driven in New Zealand is expected to increase significantly over the coming years. By the end of 2021, the government aims to have 64,000 electric vehicles on the road. In effect, it won’t be too long before more and more companies start offering charging solutions to their customers. New builds or significant renovations present the perfect opportunity to include pre-wiring, to align with upcoming electrical regulations changes.

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MATERIALS SOLUTIONS

Specialist in metals Additive Manufacturing in high performance alloys. We are moving 3D printing out of the laboratory and onto the factory floor. We solve complex printing engineering challenges and focus on high-end prototypes and serial production for customers across the Power Generation, Aerospace, Automotive and Process and Tooling sectors.

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ENGINEERING TECH

10 simple ways to ensure a successful infrastructure project

Article | August 4, 2021

In amongst the chatter about how we can 'do' infrastructure better, there's now a growing consensus that we need to improve the way we design our interventions - 'design' in the broader sense of the word, rather than the narrow sense we tend to use as engineers. My front-end principles for better infrastructure Over the course of my career, the following front-end principles have served well to ensure we think through, before we rush in where angels fear to tread. Be clear about the purpose and the expected outcomes, and engage communities in decision-making through an effective communication strategy. Prioritise the user, aiming to offer services that are modern, effective and affordable. Seek to improve people's quality of life and support the transition to a more sustainable future, while also facilitating the functioning of the economy, enhancing productivity and accommodating growth (to the extent possible, given other competing objectives). Extract greatest value from existing infrastructure through timely maintenance, repurposing, renewal and upgrading. Seek to remove constraints and bottlenecks. Aim to make best use of data, automation, innovation and technology (including for future asset management), recognising the complexity and risks this may introduce. Recognise, analyse, mitigate and manage technical, environmental and climate risks, and complete any surveys necessary to support this. Improve governance, with robust, timely and transparent decision-making, supported by strong evidence-based planning, clear prioritisation, and best practice technical design and delivery. Seek an appropriate funding balance between 'user pays' and general taxation which incentivises behaviours in the best long-term social, economic and environmental interests. Complete well-evidenced business cases and risk assessments of proposed initiatives before embarking on projects, including financing proposals. Aim to allocate the risks identified to those best able to carry them. Facilitate collaboration between the government and business to promote delivery of the broader social, economic and environmental benefits. Clearly, there are many other issues to consider as a project develops, and the above principles may seem obvious to some, and a counsel of perfection to others, but it's surprising how many are overlooked in the rush to build.

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ENGINEERING TECH

3 IMPORTANT STEPS TO REVERSE ENGINEERING A PART

Article | April 8, 2021

Over the past 120 years, there has been a production of millions of machine parts and products worldwide. However, few of these products are still relevant over the years because of the technological advancement, but lots of old parts used in machines are still in use. When a part breaks down or malfunctions, it is usually replaced using a process known as reverse engineering. There are many things that can be learned from a machine or software, just from reverse engineering. This is because the concept behind the reverse engineering process is to break something down to help understand it, and the engineer can then build a copy or try to improve it. Furthermore, there is a need for a reverse engineering design process as the technology advances to ensure the existing manufacturing systems’ continuity. Reverse engineering is an important process for everybody as we will be forced to replace entire machines without it. In this article, we will break down everything you need to know about reverse engineering, from reverse engineering to reverse engineering processes.

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ENGINEERING TECH

Infrastructure Policy Watch: cost of climate change to UK finances, public views on New Zealand infrastructure

Article | July 13, 2021

The Office for Budget Responsibility (OBR) in its latest Fiscal Risks Report has forecast the cost to the UK public finances from climate change (physical risks) and the transition to net-zero (transition risks) across a range of different scenarios. Describing the challenge, the OBR states: There are many other policy challenges to overcome, so the path to net zero can be expected to involve many policy levers on top of carbon taxes and emissions trading schemes, including bans and other regulations, and public subsidies and investment. These will all have economic and fiscal implications of one sort or another – either directly (via taxes and spending) or indirectly (via wider economic outcomes). Taking early action to achieve net zero would add 21% of GDP to public sector net debt by 2050, a smaller amount than that added by the Covid-19 pandemic. This amount comes from increased spending on net-zero investment, the loss of tax revenues (such as fuel duty), revenues from tax on carbon and other costs such as increased debt interest payments.

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Futuristic learning modules that need to be part of engineering education

Article | April 20, 2020

Engineering technology is evolving at a rapid pace across the world. Companies are depending on newer technologies like artificial intelligence, big data, machine learning, and automation. The new-age curriculum has transformed the way engineering education is delivered in the classroom. Here are futuristic modules that engineering education needs to include in the curriculum. The manufacturing facilities available today have formed a fully integrated production system powered by digital technologies.

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Spotlight

MATERIALS SOLUTIONS

Specialist in metals Additive Manufacturing in high performance alloys. We are moving 3D printing out of the laboratory and onto the factory floor. We solve complex printing engineering challenges and focus on high-end prototypes and serial production for customers across the Power Generation, Aerospace, Automotive and Process and Tooling sectors.

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