Mechanical engineer

Produces specifications for, designs, develops, manufactures and installs new/modified mechanical components or systems.

Job description

Engineering is the application of science for the benefit of humankind; mechanical engineering deals with moving parts, flow and heat. Mechanical engineers make things work and are involved in design, testing, inspection and manufacturing. They design and develop everything that qualifies as a device or machine, from an item as simple as a can opener to a modern jet aircraft. Mechanical components are found in obvious things like cars, aircraft and big machines, but other things too, like medical devices and equipment for generating energy. Virtually everything you buy or use has had a mechanical engineer involved in its design and production.

Mechanical engineers don't design quite everything, but they do design the tools and processes that make every tangible product. Robots that weld car bodies, automatic vehicles that feed materials through a factory, and the methods used to melt and shape metals and plastics are all the result of mechanical engineering design and development.

Mechanical engineers are also at the centre of the energy industry. They are creating the innovations that will allow us to access energy from renewable sources, as well as developing technologies to ensure that we use established energy sources efficiently and responsibly. Mechanical engineers are creating high-performance materials for larger, more economical, recyclable wind turbine blades and developing wave energy systems that can survive an Atlantic storm.

The mechanical engineers' versatility allows them to work in a range of roles including research, design, project management, technical sales, computer-aided engineering, process control, manufacturing engineering, aeronautics, materials engineering and product development. In these roles they serve nearly every industry, including the rapidly evolving energy sector.

Work activities

  • Using a mix of science and mathematics along with engineering techniques to design, test and create
  • Developing detailed designs using a range of computer packages
  • Integrating mechanical designs with electrical and electronic system and using specialised computation as a tool to support their work
  • Creating, coordinating and monitoring all aspects of production, fabrication and product design
  • Performing engineering assignments related to design and analysis for packaging equipment and line systems
  • Optimising new systems and upgrades to existing processes and facilities
  • developing reliability protocols and reports
  • Working with maintenance teams to develop and implement preventative maintenance processes.