My Ancient Memories

Reviewing the first category from the Wikipedia in mechanical engineering of statics, it’s picking up where I leout off in high school.  That’s almost half a lifetime ago now.  Anyways, starting with Newton’s three laws:

  1. A body (object) in motion tends to remain in motion, and a body (object) at rest tends to remain at rest.
  2. A change of motion will be in equal proportion to the force applied and that force will be applied in a straight line.
  3. Every action (force) has an equal and opposite reaction.

There are equations that prove those laws, but I’m still working to understand them.  The way those apply to statics is that using those laws, a static is a structure or system that in its normal state is balanced and does not move. Theirs is really useful for structural engineers that create buildings, bridges, and other things we really need to not collapse on us.

Apparently structures are rated on their stability by where the center of gravity is.  If the center of gravity is within a structure it is considered stable while if the center of gravity is outside of the structure it is unstable.  Logical, but a structure is metastable if the center is in the foundation of the structure.

They actually had to invent a word for “more stable”.  Amazing.

Anti-College Experiment: The First Steps

Alright, let’s start where every five year old starts when they want to know something: Wikipedia.

What I’m trying to learn is supposed to take four to five years of intense study.  The short version is that mechanical engineering is the study and application of how things move and work.

The broadly accepted basics of the field are:

  •  Statics and Dynamics
  • Strength of materials
  • Instrumentation and measurement
  • Electrotechnology
  • Electronics
  • Thermodynamics, heat transfer and HVAC
  • Combustion, automotive engines and fuel
  • Fluid mechanics and fluid dynamics
  • Mechanism design and kinematics
  • Manufacturing engineering
  • Hydraulics and pneumatics
  • Mathematics with a focus on calculus, differential equations and linear algebra
  • Engineering design
  • Product design
  • Material engineering
  • Mechatronics
  • Design engineering

Oh my goodness.

How does one eat an elephant?  One bite at a time.