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PROFESSION WATCH


UK MANUFACTURING STEPS UP IN Government calls on giants of UK engineering with no previous experience in medical device


Health services throughout the world are continuing to clamour for essential medical equipment to cope with the COVID-19 outbreak, with ventilators being top of the list. Production capacity has already been reached and the supply chain spanning closed borders is under significant strain. Nonetheless, the ventilator is the single


most vital piece of equipment needed to keep people with lung failure alive long enough for their immune systems to fight off the virus. In the absence of normal lung function, the ventilator supplies


oxygen and removes carbon dioxide. It is sophisticated technology and requires engineering precision to manufacture. To meet the demand and fulfil the


needs of the NHS alone, the UK government has enlisted the help of manufacturers that are not specialists in medical device technology, a step that hasn’t been taken since World War II. After initially snubbing EU help and stating that it had merely missed the deadline, the government then approached manufacturers such as Dyson to design and build new ventilators in the hope that


❱❱ The race is on for UK engineering giants to produce Smiths ParaPAC300 ventilators for the NHS


‘THIS IS ENGINEERING DAY’ IS SET TO ATTRACT MORE ENGINEERS AS INTEREST IN THE SUBJECT GROWS


The Royal Academy of Engineering is planning to lead a second This is Engineering Day during November this year as a way of celebrating the engineers shaping our everyday lives and the world around us. This is Engineering Day 2020 will be


themed “Be the Difference” and engineering companies, organisations and individual engineers are all invited to get involved and think of ways in which they can showcase how engineers make a difference – online, on social media or via events and engagement activities. Many of the emerging and in-demand


jobs identified by the World Economic Forum are engineering jobs, yet every year the UK is short of up to 59,000 engineers, while only 12 per cent of the engineering workforce in the UK is female, and 9 per cent are from black, Asian and minority ethnic backgrounds. So far, the “This is Engineering”


campaign is having an impact – before the campaign launched in January 2018, 39 per cent of young people surveyed aged 11-19 said they would consider a career in engineering but by the end of 2019 this had risen to 60 per cent among those who had seen the campaign videos. According to Dr Hayaatun Sillem CBE,


chief executive of the Royal Academy of Engineering, more than 150 engineering companies and organisations across the UK have so far pledged to help the academy to show a different, diverse and surprising image of the profession. “Today, we’re calling for even more


36 /// Testing & Test Houses /// April 2020


❱❱ This is Engineering day hopes to showcase the talents of young engineers in the country today and attract more people into the profession


partners to join our This is Engineering campaign and celebrate the event in November as we continue our work to transform the image of engineering so


that many more talented young people from all backgrounds can see a future for themselves in this vital and rewarding profession.”


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