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isitor registration for the annual Sensors & Instrumentation and

Machine Building shows is now open. The events will be returning to Birmingham’s NEC on 30th September and 1st October, where they will be co-locating with Micro|Nano|Mems. Simply visit one of the websites and register for free entry to all three shows. This year’s Sensors &

Instrumentation will be the biggest so far, with more companies, larger stands, and an even greater variety of technologies on show. “The 2013 exhibition was a great

success,” commented Kathryn Ambrose, show organiser. “This year, not only are previous exhibitors returning, but we are also looking forward to welcoming a number of new companies.” Ambrose said: “In addition to

displaying well established products, a number of companies will be using Sensors & Instrumentation 2014 as the platform in which to launch brand new products to the UK marketplace. Staff will be on hand to answer questions and provide demonstrations.” Entry to the exhibition will also

give visitors the chance to attend some interesting and inspiring seminars. Topics covered will include: ‘Five red flags to consider before configuring your next measurement system’ by Kyle Voosen of National Instruments; ‘Flexibility in force measurement’ by Thomas Kleckers, HBM; and ‘Accelerometers – the truth and more’ by Neill Ovenden, DJB Instruments. Full details on these and other seminars can be found on the website. The Machine Building show will

include products and components aimed at the machine builder, with exhibitors this year including igus, Laser 2000, Kanya, Machine Building Systems and Aerotech. This will also feature a seminar programme. Topics covered will

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Parker Hannifin is sponsoring up to £80,000 to help The JCB Academy develop a practical hydraulic engineering training facility which will provide hands-on hydraulics education. The new facility is expected to open in November this year. The company will provide a hydraulic training rig at no cost, and discussions are also progressing with a view to Parker’s hydraulics experts supporting practical student workshops. The JCB Academy principal, Jim Wade, said: “This donation will enable us to really develop the

hydraulics programme that we offer. “Our students currently look at hydraulics in

theory and practice, but they get very little chance to actually test that out and experiment with hydraulic processes. The rig being donated will enable them to put that theory into practice. It will also provide key hands-on practical experience for people on our apprentice programme, and hopefully help them to be more effective when designing new hydraulic systems in the future.” Academy director of apprenticeships, Jim Bailey,

added: “Once completed, the new fluid power training area will provide a practical and attractive space for students and tutors alike.”


ver the years it

has been interesting to see the changing attitudes in industry towards the ‘future generation’ of engineers, with more and more companies getting involved with student training and education. The opening of technical colleges (such as the new one in Scarborough and the Wigan/Murrelektronik collaboration) aimed at promoting careers in STEM, is a step that will provide huge benefits to the UK economy.

Rachael Morling - Editor

The Institution of Engineering and Technology (IET) is warning that the Government proposal to remove GCSE engineering could make the skills crisis an even bigger cause of concern for UK employers. The IET has already highlighted

this to Ofqual following their proposals to streamline the number of GCSE courses in manufacturing, electronics and engineering. Paul Davies, IET head of policy,

said: “It is imperative that GCSE engineering be reformed rather than removed... It is widely recognised as a route to providing the crucial technical skills that young people need to succeed in industry. According to the IET Skills Survey, 44% of engineering, IT and technical recruits do not meet the


employer’s expected levels of skills. “It is important to engage

students with the discipline of engineering as early as possible… It is unclear whether these skills will be adequately covered by the proposed Design and Technology syllabus. The UK has a shortage of engineers and the removal of these subjects sends the wrong message about their importance to the UK’s economy. “We believe that rigorous,

highly valued qualifications should exist in engineering and technology areas that will be vital to the nation’s future and that all education policy makers should seek to maximise the take up of these qualifications.”

Roxtec is reporting a 45% growth from its UK operation with sales hitting £5m, representing a four-fold increase in sales over the past eight years. Graham O’Hare, managing director

of Roxtec’s UK arm, said the design and manufacture of customised multi cable penetration seals was a big factor in their success. He said: “We are working closely with our customers to make cable and pipe seals specific to their needs.”

Bauer Gear Motor, now a part of Altra Industrial Motion, is building a new manufacturing headquarters in its home town of Esslingen, Germany. Karl-Peter Simon, Bauer Gear

Motor managing director, said: “This investment will make Bauer Gear Motor one of the most flexible gear motor suppliers on the market. Introducing our new production concept will enable us to reduce our current standard production time for configurable gear motors from ten days to five days by the end of 2014. “This development will

demonstrate Bauer’s ability to supply customised gear motors with a very short lead time.”

Both James Walker UK and James Walker & Co are now accredited to standards ISO 9001 Quality management, AS/EN 9001 Aviation, Space & Defence, ISO 14001 Environmental management, and OHSAS 18001 Occupational health & safety.

include ‘Real time applications and controllers communicating via non- real-time Ethernet’ by Istvan Szabo, Szabo Software; and ‘Developments in Automation – Technology, Standards, Regulations and Policy’ by Dr Graeme Philp, Gambica Association. “Your visitor badge will provide free entry to the co-located shows,” added Ambrose. “With the events gaining in popularity, we highly advise that visitors pre-register to avoid queuing on the day.”



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