Mechanical Components

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Valves provide vital link

As cycling continues to gain popularity, cyclists are demanding more from their bikes. Every component comes under scrutiny when looking to engineer a better bike – and the chain is no different.


Built for battle - Robot Wars' revamped House Robots

The return of Robot Wars to our screens this summer had completely re-engineered house robots, which were needed to keep up with the competition. Justin Cunningham finds out how the technology has ...


Raising the BAR

If you have the best sailor in the Olympic history, sailing the best boat available, then the long wait for a British victory in the America's Cup will be over. Easier said than done of course



Solution to last month’s coffee time challenge

The solution to our May edition challenge about tackling the problem of subsiding railway tracks started in Finland where the marshy landscape freezes solid in the winter but melts in summer.



Shock result

Shock-absorbing elastomers sit at the heart of a revolutionary suspension system. Lou Reade reports



Magnetic refrigeration gets rid of gas

Tom Shelley reports on an alternative refrigeration technology that uses no gas and could retain its efficiency even when used on a very small scale



Sealing in extreme conditions

Tom Shelley reports on developments to push the operating envelopes of seals for gas turbines and jet engines



Pressing for success

Tom Shelley reports on a visit to a Midlands maker of high tech metal pressings



A beginner's guide to spring selection

Springs are fundamental mechanical components which form the basis of many mechanical systems. A spring can be defined as an elastic member which exerts a resisting force when its shape is changed. ...



2D Geometry solves heat effect problems

A simple idea copes with heat effects in fibre optic components, electronic packaging and advanced sandwich composite constructions. Tom Shelley reports


Neodymium has magnetic appeal

Even though prices of rare earth magnets are falling and their performance improving, many design engineers are still choosing not to use them in new devices. Dean Palmer investigates



Two lips seal better than one

Race car engine crankshaft seals are required to cause minimal friction at the same time as maintaining increasingly high crankcase vacuums.



Low wear, high pressure shaft seal

A radial shaft seal has been developed that remains stable under pressure in dynamic applications up to 10 bar and is capable of withstanding pressure peaks of up to 30 bar, with a bursting strength ...