Even MORE engineering resources worth bookmarking

Education is one of the keystones of mechanical engineering. The breakthroughs and changes that continually beset the industry can leave you on the outside looking in real fast if you don’t take the initiative to keep up with the changes. The technology age means greater innovations, so you’ll need to make sure you have a few aces up your sleeve to keep you relevant.

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Of course, the internet is almost always your greatest ally in that fight, as there are engineering resources all around that can keep you in the know. However, some of the slightly off-the-beaten-bath resources may just give you that edge that helps you move from just another engineer to being a top-notch professional. Here are a few of those hidden gems.

The Institution of Mechanical Engineers Team YouTube channel

 

In this video: Profile of Joanna Gleeson, a 28-year-old Mechanical Engineer who works for Corus Steelworks.

Yes, YouTube is good for more than just watching videos of ice cream-eating kittens getting brain freeze and movie trailers. The IMechE folks have built themselves quite a tremendous online portal for mechanical engineers, spotlighting things like career profiles and stories of working mechanical engineers, student projects and events, and practical applications and lessons, such as how engineering has advanced health care, and the effects of volcanic ash on plane engines. Resources like this are how young engineers develop into great ones, guiding you to the cutting edge of the industry in gentle, easily-accessible bite-sized chunks. This is a site you’ll want to bookmark, whether you’re a student, a working engineer, or just a tech geek.

The Great Courses: mechanical engineering

Continuing education is vital in most professions, particularly if you want to stay in the forefront of the industry’s changes. Few fields of endeavor advance as quickly as mechanical engineering, meaning staying on top of the latest changes and advances is particularly important.

Sure, you could head over to Lynda.com and find some courses, but we’ll take The Great Courses and their enormous lineup of courses like Thermodynamics: Four Laws That Move the Universe and Understanding the Science for Tomorrow: Myth and Reality, among 74 others in the field. If online truly is the future of higher education (and it is), this type of coursework will be something you’ll want to be sure you are caught up on, and invest some time and even a little money in going back to from time to time.

Engineer Student

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Diagram of basic drop forging set up

If you’re a UK engineering student, where better to get all the resources you need to get your National Diploma/Certificate? For students, perhaps the greatest achievement of the internet is eliminating the constant need to hang out in the library. This no-frills site is full of links that cover pneumatics, manufacturing techniques, materials, and mechanical principles, Engineer Student is a one-stop shop.

If you’re NOT a UK engineering student, don’t worry, you can still use it to brush up on scientific basics like Boyles law, thermal conductivity, and wave properties. I guess you could just Google aluminum's boiling point, but this place...this place has a chart. You know you love charts.

MIT OpenCourseWare

This photo sequence shows the

This photo sequence shows the "gobbling droplets" phenomenon. A jet of liquid is unstable because of surface tension and usually breaks into small droplets. The addition of minute quantities of polymeric molecules provides an additive elastic stress which stabilizes the liquid column. In this situation the terminal droplet has the time to gobble many of its incoming neighbors before its detachment. (Photo by Jose Bico and Christian Clasen, used courtesy of Prof. Gareth McKinley.)

In what is surely the most obvious and pick on the planet, I still don't think any list like this would be worth anything if it didn't mention MIT OpenCourseWare. I won't lecture you with the ethos behind OpenCourseWare (although you should familiarize yourself with it if you haven't already). I doubt very seriously there's a more thorough and free resource out there for teaching yourself a lot more than just the fundamentals.


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  • phil scott

    Hello, I am a 75 year old ME, when I began things were at least 90% less complex as they are today, its going to take not just absolute diligence in keeping up, but more than a few years hands on with the tools in hand, fixing things to fully understand them. A herculean challenge in my book unless you specialize.

    That said my old school experience still pays off well for me today,

    Phil Scott ME