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MIA theme 1.1 - Engineering in history & modern era - 2019

Engineering in history
Engineering in the modern era
Study theme 1.1
ELO 7 – Impact of Engineering
Managing the
impact of
ELO 7 – Impact of Engineering
and the
Climate Change
Water Pollution
Air Pollution
Water Quality Control
Solid Waste Management
ELO 7 – Impact of Engineering
Society and
Engineering History
Innovation, Technology Transfer
Sociological Insights
Philosophy of Engineering
Engineering in history
The Scientific
and Industrial
Hunter Gatherers and their Technologies
• Hunter gatherers based in East Africa
• +-2 000 000 years ago
• Axe and spear
• Controlled use of fire
• Clothing, utensils for domestic use and early art forms
Agricultural Revolution / Neolithic Revolution
• Development of agriculture was a critical turning point:
• +- 10 000 – 7000 years ago
Spread of agriculture
Why in Mesopotamia first?
• Number of theories
• The ease of domestication of local foods
• The fertility of land
• Etc
Advantages and Disadvantages of Agricultural
Crash Course – Agricultural Revolution
• https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Yocja_N5s1I&list=
• Lecture : up until 6mins
• (Note: This video is part of curriculum )
Influence of agriculture
Influence of agriculture
• Societal changes
• Career specialisation
• Support an aristocracy
• Settlements of people
• Support development of technologies
• Denser populations
• But disease and war
• Writing
Early Engineering – Mesopotamia and Egypt
• Wheel in Mesopotamia @ 3500 BC. [Mesopotamia = Modern day
• Writing around 4000 BC
• Building technology advanced quickly from 3000BC.
• Bricks in Mesopotamia
• Egyptian stone for pyramids (2650 – 2190 BC).
• Great pyramids of Giza was commissioned by pharaoh Cheops
around 2600BC
• Metallurgy
• Golden Rhino of Mapungubwe
• Benin – bronze sculptures
• Building technology
• Ruins of Kush
• Great ruined mosque and palace of the city of
• Granite ruins at Zimbabwe
India and China
• 9th century AD – India used the number zero as a
• Indian numbering system 1-9
• Chinese invented gun powder, silk weaving technology
etc etc
Greeks and Romans
• Greeks considered the foundation of European knowledge
• Focused on liberal arts, not mechanical ones
• Romans (743 BC) inherited Greek knowledge, focused more on
practical outcomes
• Wars, roads, Colonization of Europe
• The term engineer comes from the Latin term “ingeniator”
meaning ingenious person
The scientific revolution and the rise of capitalism
• Beginning of the 17th century (1600’s)
• In Europe, the Renaissance ushered in the Scientific Revolution
• Observation and Experiment began to challenge existing dogma
• The rise of capitalism in the 17th century bought about a renewed
interest in the practice of the trades and a more practical orientation
towards knowledge.
The Scientific Revolution
• https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=vzo8vnxSARg
• Lecture up to 5mins;
• then 6m30s to 7m30s
• Then 9h30s to 12m00s
(Note: Entire video is part of curriculum )
• Credit for discoveries?
• Western history vs world history
• Reporting of history
The rise of capitalism
• Exploration, empire and the accumulation of capital
• Europeans set out to explore and seize new resources
1000’s – Norse explorer Leif Ericson in Vinland and Canada
1271 – Marco Polo et al. sets of on a 24 year journey into Asia
1492 – Christopher Columbus (Spain) reaches the Bahamas
1488 – Bartolomeu Dias (Portugal) Sailed around the Southern tip of Africa
1497 – Vasco da Gama (Portugal) sails from Portugal to India
1652 – Jan van Riebeek (Dutch) landed at the Cape
• Spain and Portugal led the way in the 16th century.
• The main economic centres moved away from the Mediterranean
to the Atlantic seaboard.
• By the early 17th century the Netherlands dominated world trade
The industrial revolution
• Crash Course History – Industrial Revolution
• https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=zhL5DCizj5c
• Lecture: Up until 4m0s
• Then 6m0s till 9m0s
(Note: This video is part of curriculum )
• Why did it start in Britain?
• Industrialisation to replace labour
Steam power
• Started in Britain in the mid eighteenth century
• Thomas Savery
• Patented a primitive (pistonless) steam engine in 1698 (the miners
• 1712 Thomas Newcomen developed a practical atmospheric
engine to harness steam power.
• James Watt more than doubled Newcomen engine efficiency
• Introduced a separate condenser
• By end of 1700’s, 500 Watt and Boulton engines were in Britian
The spread of industrialization
• British loss of technical leadership (from 1850 onwards)
Complacency and conservatism of its society
Undervaluing and neglecting practical and commercial applications
Preoccupation with individually fitted final products discouraged standardisation
Dominance of steam engine delayed the development of other forms of power.
Restrictions by railway lobby on road transport (including a law that required a man
with a flag to walk in front of any road vehicle)
The spread of industrialization
• Germany:
• Push to expand foreign trade and emphasis on exporting industrial products
• Promote education relevant to industrialisation
• Manufacturers set up their own industrial research laboratories
• Japan
• Latecomer
• Meiji restoration (1868) saw Japan move from a Feudal society to a market
• The steam engine was important but the interplay between new means
of production and growing requirements of industry and commerce
really drove the industrial revolution
The industrial revolution – social impacts
• Social and economic impact of the industrial revolution:
• Population of England and Wales:
• 1750: 6 million;
• 1800: 9 million;
• 1850: 18 million…
• Decline in death rate,
• better transport improved food procurement,
• provision of clean drinking water and sanitation
• Child Labour
• Automation and subsequent job losses
Human Population Growth
• Human population growth in 5 minutes
Engineering in the modern era
The automobile industry and changes in production
Taylor scientific management
Modern manufacturing
Engineering and infrastructure
Case Studies
The automobile industry and changes in production
•Internal combustion engine
• Most common in vehicles and portable machinery
• 4 stroke engine: Conceived by Beau de Rochas (1862)
• 4 stroke engine: 1st made to work by Nikolaus Otto
The automobile industry and
changes in production
• Gotlieb Daimler
• 1st motorcycle 1885
• Karl Benz
• 1st Automobile 1885
• William Maybach
• 1st carburettor (Patent 1909)
• Charles Kettering
• Electric starter (1912)
• Rudolph Diesel
• Compression engine
• Difficulty with fuel injection
• Diesel powered ships from world war 1
The automobile industry and
changes in production
• Early automobile industry:
• Initially there were highly skilled craftsmen
• Automobile were made to custom order
• Ford
• Introduced the moving production line (1913) (said to have been adapted from Chicago
meat works chain conveyors (1890’s)
• Model T was designed for ease of assembly
• To start with labour turnaround was as high as 380%
• Ford doubled pay rates and held on to his workers but there were little intrinsic
satisfaction in their work
Impact of the automobile
• It reduced the need for people to live near railway lines and
stations as long as there were roads to connect them
• It created mobility on a scale never seen before (Modern
endurance horseback riding = 80-160km in a day (single rider, no
• Changed city life and accelerated the expansion of cities into
• Negative impact:
• Traffic congestion, Atmospheric pollution, Fatalities and injuries
The automobile industry and
changes in production
• Social impacts
• Collingridge (1980) – the initial understanding of any new technology is so limited that
control can only be arbitrary
• Automobile
• Early control measures for dust, frightening horses and scaring cows
• But missed the problem of road toll
• By the year 2000 automobiles killed 25-30million people approaching that of the two
world wars)
Taylor scientific management
• Developed by Frederick Taylor, pursued by Henry Ford
• Division of labour to a level of minute detail, allowing just those
amounts of skills to be purchased as were needed for each
subdivided element of the overall task
• Time and motion study to find the best and quickest way of doing
work and to allocate time for doing it
Modern manufacturing
• 1890 - 1900 Manufacturing replaced agriculture as the
leading source of economic growth in the US
• In 2010 China contributed 19,8% of world's
manufacturing output. It became the largest
manufacturer in the world that year, a position the US
held for about 110 years.
4th Industrial Revolution
• 1st : Steam Power
• 2nd: Electric Power to create mass production
• 3rd: Digital Revolution
• 4th: Embedded Technology
• Artificial Intelligence
• Biotechnology
• Nanotechnology
Engineering and infrastructure
• Infrastructure
• Modern term for a traditional focus of engineering activity
• The larger a project, the wider its consequences.
• Engineers are being drawn into debates on social topics
• E.g. water, Electricity supply
• The answers often depend more on political, cultural,
social aspects than on what the engineers think is best
Moving to renewable energy?
• What are the negative impacts of moving to
renewable energy?
• Environment
• Social
Engineering and infrastructure
• Railroad
• Speed changed their perception of distance.
• With steel wheels and steel rail remains very effective
• Roads
• Good road systems allowed the automobile to dominant mode
of transport
• Building of the interstate highway in the USA took 40 years and
was one of the largest engineering projects ever.
Engineering and infrastructure
• Desalination?
• Larger Dams?
• Cross Border Deals
• Lesotho Highlands Water Project
• Source?
• Fossil: Nuclear vs Coal vs Gas
• Renewable? : Solar, Wind
Case studies: Coalbrookdale to
Silicone valley
• What conditions are conductive for innovation
• What makes an area thrive?
• Is it coincidence that both these revolutions took are based in
• What can we learn from them about the common factors that will be
essential to the success of future industrial developments?
Case studies: Coalbrookdale to
Silicone Valley
• Coalbrookdale:
• Coking: Process to eliminating sulphur from coal.
• Patent granted in 1620
• In 1707 Abraham Darby patented a method for casting iron pots in
• In 1708 he moved to Coalbrookdale and took over a site with an
existing blast furnace
• By transferring technology from the brewing industry
• He built a blast furnace running on coke.
• The iron produced was ideal for cooking utensils and pots.
Case studies: Coalbrookdale to
Silicone Valley
• Coalbrookdale developed rapidly – Darby developed additional blast
furnaces, added forges, rolling mills, foundries and 32km of wagon
• Furnace site was ½ way down a slope, with coal mines at the top and
river Severn at the bottom.
• Furnace was powered initially by waterwheels
HP –
The beginning
of Silicon Valley
Case studies: Coalbrookdale to Silicone Valley
• Silicon Valley:
• Industrial concentration consisting largely of electronics and
information corporations in San Francisco area
• Since before WW2 fundamental research into semiconductors @
Stanford University
• Profesor Terman (Dean Engineering) dedicated Stanford and the
industry in tandem as a “community of scholars”
Case studies: Coalbrookdale to Silicone Valley
•Silicon Valley:
• Hewlett Packard Founded in 1939
• Fairchild semiconductor was founded in 1957
• Beginning of transistor use in computers
• Traitorous Eight left
• Led to Intel, AMD
• 31 semiconductor companies
were started in the Valley
Case studies: Coalbrookdale to Silicone Valley
• Common threads between Coalbrookdale and Silicone valley:
• The informal channels of information exchange seems to be as
important as the formal channels
• Sense of community
• It inhibits the spread of population
• Inhibits constraints and limits urban sprawl
• And underpinning common purpose may develop – you work for
the valley
• Puts people in touch with their basic communal feelings
• The valley physically locates and concentrates people
Tesla vs Edison
Contrasting style in
bringing us electricity
• Edison – Tireless tinkering by
trial and error
• Array of machinists in his lab
• Lab similar to Guild system
• Stressed the importance of
• Learning from others was highly
• Tesla - hardly ever made
• Few workers in his lab.
• He was well educated –
replaced guesswork with
scientific reasoning
• Amazingly vivid imagination
What Edison did in his lab, Tesla
did in his mind
Tesla vs Edison
Contrasting style in
bringing us electricity
• Free and easy communication in
• Agile businessman
• Great ability to obtain financial
• Founded businesses to apply his
• Lab left room for tinkering but
workers were largely unskilled
• Disliked mathematics and theory
• “I was almost a sorry witness of his
doings, knowing that just a little
theory and calculation would have
saved him 90% of the labour... The
truly prodigious amount of his
accomplishments is little short of a
miracle.”: Tesla
• Media and society was unsympathetic
to Tesla
• Came from Eastern Europe
• Germ phobia/ no social life/ avoided
the distractions of female company till
he died / plagued with
• Tesla worked for Edison but left after
not receiving a claimed $50 000 that
was apparently verbally promised to
him by Edison.
• Tesla’s value to Edison was minimised
because his system didn’t allow
Tesla’s genius to be applied outside
Edison’s goals.