Mechatronics requires synergistic ways of looking at design tools and drive systems. Precisely designed components -- motors, drives, and gearboxes -- can be viewed as standardized modular units fulfilling requirements for speed, torque, motion sequence, dynamics, and positioning accuracy. (Source: Lenze Americas)
While I found the concepts introduced in this article very interesting, I struggled throughout as well. By placing the enineering burden from three major disciplines on one person without the benefit of additional perspectives that come from having a team is not a direction that I would normally pursue. Most folks recognize the value of interacting with their colleagues that specialize in other areas. Whenever I would build a test set, building a test fixture was a very important part of the design. Having very limited mechanical engineering ability, I consulted with the guys that had that expertise...and through our collaboration an effective test fixture design would emerge. I would respectfully disagree with the scenario of a very unintelligent design that did not work well because it was built by three different engineers with differing fields of expertise.
It seems to me that in order to educate a mechatronics engineer would also take an even more intensive education with a much more expanded degree plan - something a lot of folks would not be able to afford time-wise or financially - but if they didn't get a good education they would be a "jack of all trades and master of none" which might do well for home projects but not for industry.
There is currently much discussion around the term "platform," which may be preceded by the adjectives "mobile," "wearable," "medical," "healthcare," etc. However, regardless of the platform being discussed, they usually have one key aspect in common: They tend to be wireless. So, why is this one aspect so fairly universal? The answer is convenience.
Everyone has a MEMS story. For most of us it’s probably the airbag that saved our lives or the life of a loved one. Perhaps it’s the tire pressure sensor that alerted us about deflation before we were stranded alone on a dark muddy road.
Bioimimicry is not merely a helpful design tool -- it also encourages designers to think not only about how to solve design problems by imitating nature, but how to make the products, materials, and systems they design more ecologically sound and nature-friendly.
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