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Through Engineers’ Eyes

You are on your way towards gaining 'engineers’ eyes’
This short video explains what you have encountered and what is to come.

At the end of each week, a quick video will highlight your progress towards Engineers’ Eyes and a concept wheel will show you how it all fits in.

Wheel revealing the words Week 1 Load/extension for springs, stiffness of springs, linear/non-linear springs, static/dynamic conditions Week 1 concept wheel (Click to expand)

You haven’t heard much about forces so far. In fact we didn’t want to use the word at all (although it might have crept in by mistake somewhere). Force is a mysterious concept that we’ll explore next week.

Instead we talked about ‘loads’. Loads are a plain fact. You saw us hang a weight pan full of washers on an elastic band. That’s a load. If it was stationary it was a static load: if it was moving then it might be a dynamic load.

You heard a lot about springs. For example, we measured how a spring stretched when we added load to it. That led to the idea of stiffness.

Next week introduces load transducers – devices that can tell us how big a load is. But more importantly, you’ll start hearing about ‘forces’, and our load transducers will turn into force transducers.

Talking points

These are to get you started. Share any other thoughts you’ve had.

  • Week 2 will involve trigonometry. When did you last use sine, cosine and tangent?

Share your experiments

Don’t forget to share your experiments on the Through Engineers’ Eyes Padlet wall for this week.

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Through Engineers' Eyes: Engineering Mechanics by Experiment, Analysis and Design

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FutureLearn - Learning For Life

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