UNESCO’s recent decision that 4 March will henceforth be celebrated as World Engineering Day for Sustainable Development was a significant moment for both early-career and established engineers alike. Starting in 2020, the annual celebration will present a global opportunity to celebrate the profession and encourage the next generation of engineers to solve the challenges of the future. Our previous article on the announcement can be found here.
We sat down with WFEO President Dr Marlene Kanga, who led the initiative, to hear her response to the announcement:
“Engineers have a hand in designing, creating, or modifying nearly everything we touch, wear, eat, see, and hear in our daily lives.”– American Society of Engineering Education
UNESCO’s recent declaration that 4 March will henceforth be celebrated as World Engineering Day for Sustainable Development was a significant moment for both early-career and established engineers alike. Starting in 2020, the annual celebration presents a global opportunity to recognise the profession and encourage the next generation of engineers to solve the challenges of the future.
Image caption (Credit NASA): Astronaut Neil A. Armstrong, Apollo ll mission commander, at the modular equipment storage assembly (MESA) of the Lunar Module “Eagle” on the historic first extravehicular activity (EVA) on the lunar surface. Astronaut Edwin E. Aldrin Jr. took the photograph with a Hasselblad 70mm camera. Most photos from the Apollo 11 mission show Buzz Aldrin. This is one of only a few that show Neil Armstrong (some of these are blurry).
Create the Future episode two
The second episode of the Create the Future podcast – Moon landing and Mars rovers: our forays into space – is out now! Celebrating the 50th anniversary of the Moon landing, we talk with Apollo engineer Dr David Baker and then traverse the surface of Mars with Airbus ExoMars rover engineer Abbie Hutty.
We’re excited to announce the launch of our new podcast series, Create the Future! *NEW LINKS UPDATED BELOW*
Create the Future
Engineering is everywhere. From nanotechnology and the Internet of Things to autonomous vehicles, healthcare, and even your morning cup of coffee – engineering shapes the world around us. Engineers launched us forward from our first use of tools to an era of space exploration, and they will play a central role in solving the challenges of our future. Create the Future explores the wonderful world of skill, creativity, and innovation that is engineering, and highlights how engineers impact our lives each and every day.
Hosted by Sue Nelson, each episode will look into a different area of engineering and bring together the knowledge, experiences, and ideas of both industry experts and young professionals.
Heart attacks (myocardial infarctions) are the leading cause of death worldwide. They result in more than 2.4 million deaths per year in the US, more than 4 million deaths in Europe and North Asia, and one-third of total deaths in developing countries. Heart attacks can be difficult to treat – effective surgical care for heart attacks requires transdisciplinary collaboration – but there are, nonetheless, treatments available. One such treatment is to apply a cardiac patch, a structure that replaces or assists damaged tissue before the entire organ is affected. A new viscoelastic patch, recently developed through collaborative efforts between clinicians and engineers, demonstrates promising results for future cardiac therapies.
The unprecedented pace of innovation today leaves many people wondering about our future. Whether robots will take our jobs; whether AI-based decisions about our security, finances, and health are obscure or biased; and whether our increasing energy demands will drive the Earth’s climate to the edge of catastrophe – these questions occupy the forefront of contemporary discourse.
Lord Browne of Madingley, Chairman of the Queen Elizabeth Prize for Engineering, argues in ‘Make, Think, Imagine’that we need not and must not put the brakes on technological advance. Civilisation is founded on engineering innovation; all progress stems from the human urge to make things and to shape the world around us, resulting in greater freedom, health and wealth for all. Below is an excerpt from the book.
3D printing optoelectronic devices directly into curved structures could create a new paradigm for ocular prosthetics.
Today, optoelectronic devices such as LEDs and light receptors (photodiodes) are everywhere, ranging in application from mobile phone screens and energy-efficient lighting to large digital display panels and image sensors. These devices – which convert electrical energy into light or vice versa– transmit a substantial amount of visual information. Made using the same techniques used to make computer chips, optoelectronic devices similarly get smaller and smaller as technology evolves, eventually coming into closer contact with human bodies (the now-omnipresent smartwatch, for instance). With this increasing proximity comes an increasing role in our lives; where we currently rely on wearable sensing and therapeutic devices to monitor our health, routine use of smart prosthetics in our skin, tissues, and organs is fast becoming a reality.
2015 Queen Elizabeth Prize for Engineering winner, Dr Robert Langer, recently spoke with Health Europa about his introduction to bioengineering, his work on large molecule drug delivery, and the progression and impact of bioengineering in recent decades. The below article has been republished with permission.
As this week is European Week Against Cancer (EWAC), we speak to Dr Robert Langer, the first person to engineer polymers to advance drug delivery, treating many diseases such as cancer.
Introducing Dr Langer, the ground-breaking chemical engineer who has been awarded the Queen Elizabeth Prize for Engineering for his revolutionary advances in engineering. Langer was named as one of the 25 most important individuals in biotechnology by Forbes Magazine and CNN (1999) and Bio World (1990), and as one of the 100 most important people – ‘America’s Best’ – by Time magazine (2001). In light of European Week Against Cancer, Langer talks to Health Europa about the evolving environment of biotechnology, utilising large molecule-controlled drug delivery, treating diseases such as cancer and the future of his research.