course was held in the Department of Materials Science and Metallurgy, University of Cambridge and the academic director is Dr Harry Bhadeshia of that department. For further information contact Course Administrator, University of Cambridge, Programme for Industry, 1 Trumpington Street, Cambridge, CB2 lQA, UK. Tel: +44 01223 302233. Fax: +44 01223 301122.
Tribology course A three-day short course on tribology was held on 3-5 April 1995 at Cambridge University. Tribology, the science and technology of friction, lubrication and wear, makes a vital contribution to many areas of industry and yet is often underrepresented in the education of scientists and engineers. This short course covered the fundamental aspects of this interdisciplinary subject, and will be taught by members of staff of the Departments of Engineering and Materials Science and Metallurgy, as well as invited external speakers. The course was designed to provide an insight into the following areas: l l l l l
Surface examination and topography Fundamentals of contact mechanics Fluid film lubrication Friction and its control Wear and its reduction
Thermoplastics Welding Technology: materials and processes A three-day course is to be held at the Uni- versity of Cambridge in conjuno tion with TWI. The aim of the course is to allow participants to gain knowledge and confidence in selecting the thermoplastics and joining processes appropriate to their business. The course will present the underlying properties of thermoplastics, their characterization and a description of welding techniques, both well established and novel. Together these will provide the basis for selecting optimal joining processes for different applications and materials. The lectures will be reinforced by practical demonstrations and clinics in the Department of Materials Science and TWI so that delegates will be able to seek expert confidential advice about their own particular engineering problems. The course is designed for engineers and designers who are working with thermoplastics or who have worked in metals and are thinking of changing to these materials. The course would also be of interest to manufacturers of thermoplastic materials who wish to gain an appreciation of this important technology as a means of serving their customers more effectively. The course will be accessible to anyone with a degree or equivalent experience in the field. It is multidisciplinary and no knowledge of the properties of thermoplastics or relevant joining technology is required. Participants will be asked to provide more details of their interests and background prior to the course so that these can be taken into account. The course will be led by Professor Alan Windle from the Department of Materials Science and Dr Martin Wilson from TWI. For further information contact Anne Kent, University of Cambridge, Programme for Industry, 1 Trumpington Street, Cambridge CB2 IAQ, UK. Tel: +44 0223 332722. Fax: +44 0223 301122.
The course was designed to be of interest and value both to young professionals (in research or design) who have recently moved into the field and wish to improve their level of background knowledge and understanding, and also more senior industrial staff who require an appreciation of the scientific basis of this important subject. The lectures were sensitive to participants’ backgrounds and although some mathematical treatment wass inevitable, it was self-contained and the course will be accessible to graduates in engineering or the physical sciences with no previous exposure to tribology.
New support for manufacturing SMEs
For further information contact: Course Administrator, University of Cambridge, Programme for Industry, 1 Trumpington Street, Cambridge, CB2 lQA, UK. Tel: +44 01223 302233. Fax: +44 01223 301122.
On 17 July 1995, Richard Page, Minister for Small Firms, Industry and Energy, launched Joining Forces, the national materials joining technology transfer programme for small and medium-sized businesses
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(SMEs). The launch took place at Abington, near Cambridge, headquarters of The Welding Institute (TWI) which is running the programme for the UK Department of Trade and Industry. ‘Joining Forces’ is a trail-blazing initiative to boost the business performance of UK manufacturing companies. To maintain competitiveness these companies need to use the best and most appropriate materials joining processes in their production. However, small and growing companies frequently lack the expertise needed for correct choice and implementation of best practice in joining technology. ‘Joining Forces’ is designed to give these companies a simple means to assess and evaluate the technology available and its likely impact on their business. The ‘Joining Forces’ programme gives SMEs easy access to the vast resource of knowledge and know-how that TWI has accumulated during its long involvement with industry worldwide (TWI is an internationally recognized centre of excellence in materials joining technology.) Backed by f5 million seed funding from the DTI, TWI is setting up a range of activities specifically to help small businesses. Technology transfer will be achieved by: Best practice demonstrations at TWI and other sites throughout the UK. Five have already been set up at Abington - adhesives, spray coatings, laser cutting, sheet processes, and microtechnol%Y Video consultation facilities - to provide technical advice rapidly and economically. Product and process reviews and feasibility studies - to identify opportunities for improvement and provide the facts to confirm the business benefits available Workshops and seminars, a user guide, and a help desk - providing up-to-date insights into the commercial benefits of best practice Programme partners - companies in supply chains and others with a vested interest in the success of SMEs are supporting Joining Forces, extending its reach and increasing effectiveness. Companies already committed to programme partnership are ESAB Group (UK) Ltd, Babcock International Group, Eutectic Co Ltd, AAB&TR Ltd, Nexus Media Ltd, Cambridge Vacuum Engineering Ltd and BTM (UK) Ltd. TWI is also working alongside the newly established chain of Business