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What is Engineering?

Engineering is everything from the light bulb to the jet engine, the clockwork radio to the 3D television. Engineering is around us everyday and without it our lives would be completely different. The way we travel, interact and communicate is all affected by developments in modern engineering. From those who are famous inventors to those who are practically unheard of, engineers have worked tirelessly over the decades to improve and innovate.

From the invention of the first headphones through to the future of solar power, engineering is a field that is always looking to improve our environment, technology or the way we live our lives. Within engineering there are many sub-fields, all with specialists who are focused on very specific goals. These specialists can make amazing progress on their own but the truly remarkable moments are when their work comes together and provides something revolutionary. Often, this happens when a big problem needs solving, whether it's how to stop a disease spreading or stopping global warming, all kinds of engineers work together to try and find the solution.

Sound interesting? Well, below you can find out more about the future of engineering, some famous engineers and even download worksheets to learn even more.

Engineering the future

Leading experts will tell you that harnessing renewable energy is one of the prime challenges facing humanity. The sun provides more energy in a day than the world population uses in a year, so converting this source of free, unlimited energy is key to the future. But how do we convert it and store it? Well, that's where nanoengineering may help. 

This field looks at anything 1-100 nanometres in size (one nanometre is just a billionth of a metre) and could lead to revolutionary materials and products. This could be anything from helping to repair human tissue to creating a virtual reality game that incorporates all of your senses. The possibilities are endless and, with the rate of technological advancement due to be 30 times faster this half a century than the previous 50 years,  there's bound to be some huge discoveries to be made. The challenge will be to engineer the future so that humanity has a future. Will you be part of the solution to that challenge?

Famous Engineers

Every day engineers around the world are working to achieve the next big breakthrough in their field. Here's just a few of the engineers throughout the years who have developed something amazing and earned their place in the history books.

Engineering covers a wide range of products and technologies and there's been thousands of amazing inventions throughout history, we've picked a few of our favourites to talk about. Whether it's films, vacuum cleaners or early computers, these people paved the way for the technology we use today. In fact, without them our lives may have been very different.

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We have a selection of resources for teachers across Key Stages 1 to 4, just click the button below to find worksheets for the correct level.

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