Writing Better Reports

pencilNot sure what the difference is between a report and an essay?  Don’t know what is expected of you?  Learn what makes a good report at this workshop. By the end of the session you will:

  • understand why reports are written,
  • be able to plan and write a report,
  • know what to consider when laying out and presenting a report,
  • understand common problems and good practice in report writing .

You can find extra information at http://www.lboro.ac.uk/services/library/skills/topicslist/topic—report-writing.html

Just come to Library Training Room 1 on Tuesday 8th May 2012 between 6- 7.30pm.

Book a place on the Get the Know-How module on Learn LBAOO1

Icon courtesy of alessandro rei at www.iconfinder.com.

Free workshop on time management

alarm clock

Struggling to balance all your commitments? Want to avoid last minute panic with coursework deadlines looming?  Learn useful tips on time management and action planning by dropping  into the Library’s Training Room 1 from 12pm- 12.50 pm on Thursday 8th  March for the Library’s Get the Know-How course – Making the most of your Time

Book a place on the Get the Know-How module on Learn LBAOO1

More information about the course and resources on time management can be found at


Icon courtesy of alessandro rei at www.iconfinder.com

Finding Quality Information for your Assignments- Science

man runningDo you need to find journal articles to complete your assignments? Are you struggling to know where to begin?  If so why not come to G Block, Room G006 at 12pm on Friday 2nd  March for the Library’s Get the Know-How course – Finding Quality Information for your Assignments-Science 


Book a place on the Get the Know-How module on Learn LBAOO1

 information about the course and other resources to help with finding journal articles can be found at: http://www.lboro.ac.uk/library/skills/understand-info.html

IIcon courtesy of alessandro rei at www.iconfinder.com

Making the most of your reading – free workshop

book page

Are you suffering from information overload? Find out about strategies for making your reading more efficient by dropping into the Library Training Room 1 at 12pm12.50pm on Thursday 1st March for the Library’s free Get the Know-how course – Making the most of your Reading.

Book a place on the Get the Know-How module on Learn LBAOO1

More information about the course and other resources to help with reading skills can be found at: http://www.lboro.ac.uk/services/library/skills/topicslist/topic—reading-efficiently.html#

IIcon courtesy of alessandro rei at www.iconfinder.com

Watt's happening at the Science Museum?

On Wednesday 23rd March a new permanent exhibition will open at the Science Museum in London dedicated to the life and work of the engineer James Watt. Launched at a special event the day before by writer and broadcaster Adam Hart-Davies the centrepiece of the exhibition will be the attic workshop of the Scottish inventor which will be opened up to visitors for the first time. When Watt died in 1819 the workshop was locked and remained undisturbed until 1924, when the complete workshop including door, window, skylight and floorboards was transported to the Science Museum together with over 6,500 objects from inside. Although the workshop has been on display, visitors have never been allowed inside until now. Objects inside include the world’s oldest circular saw and Watt’s original 1765 model for the first separate condenser which has been described as “the greatest single improvement to the steam engine ever made”.

Boiler from James Watt beam engine - Loughborough University

Watt beam engine boiler - Loughborough University

The new display is housed alongside his early steam engines which can be viewed in the Museum’s Energy Hall. The University too can boast a James Watt beam engine which stands outside the Students Union. Dated 1850, it was donated to the former College by the London Metropolitan Water Board in 1934 and was re-erected by students.

For more information on the Exhibition visit the Science Museum web page. An interesting background article was also published recently by Adam Hart-Davies in the Daily Telegraph.

For more information on engines and engineering in general don’t forget the databases available via MetaLib such as Compendex and our new service Scopus, both accessible with your Athens username and password.

Win a trip to the high Arctic in a new engineering competition

Svalbard ice

Svalbard archipelago

Fancy a four day all expenses paid trip to Norway, including a visit to the Svalbard archipelago, a helicopter trip to a 472 metre tall gas platform and a chance to visit the seabed 300m below sea level? This is the prize for a new engineering competition being run by the New Scientist magazine, energy company Statoil and the Royal Academy of Engineering. In order to win you have to propose an answer to the following questions “What is the next Big Thing for engineers?”  In no more than 100 words you must suggest “Which engineering project you think will have the greatest impact on human life in the next 30 years and why?”  The closing date for entries is midnight on Tuesday 1st March 2011.

The five best project suggestions will be selected together with the entry which makes the best case for each one. New Scientist readers will then be asked to vote for their favourite project. The person who sent in the best entry for that project will be the winner.  For more information about the competition including the entry form and terms and conditions see the New Scientist website.

Image by ichikawayuichi and reproduced under Creative Commons Licence

Tall, taller, tallest!

London Bridge Tower

"The Shard" - London

Just before Christmas, London Bridge Tower, nicknamed “the Shard”, officially became the UK’s tallest building when the construction of the central core was complete. At 245m it is now taller than the Canary Wharf building at One Canada Square. However, there are still two year’s work ahead before it is finished. The completed structure will be another 65m in height and will become the tallest commercial building in Europe. 

Designed by architect Renzo Piano and famously starting life as a sketch on the back of a napkin in a Berlin restaurant, it has a number of sustainable features including the recyling of heat generated by office computers for apartments higher in the structure. A triple-skin glass facade will contain venetian blinds controlled by computers, reducing the need for air-conditioning by shielding occupants from the sun.

With a final height of 310m it is still a long way short of the world’s tallest building. It’s only a year since that title was claimed when the Burj Khalifa in Dubai was completed. Recently in the news when Tom Cruise was seen apparently dangling from it during filming of the latest Mission Impossible movie it stands an amazing 828m tall.

If you are looking for more information on construction and buildings why not take a look at the following sources: Civil Engineering Abstracts, Compendex and the Construction Information Service. You can find these all in the Civil Engineering category in MetaLib.

Image courtesy of George Rex used under Creative Commons Licence.

Only connect? – innovation in engineering

Royal Academy of Engineering logo

What is the connection between a new way to detect landmines, a global mobile satellite communication system, a more environmentally friendly way to produce the chemical methyl methacrylate and the world’s first self-aligning ankle-foot prosthesis? … Give up?

Well, the answer is that they are the four short-listed technologies competing MacRobert Gold Medalto win the prestigious MacRobert Award which is presented each year by the Royal Academy of Engineering for innovation in engineering.  The winning organisation receives the MacRobert Gold Medal and a prize of £50,000 which will be presented at the Academy Awards Dinner in London on Monday 7 June.

Last year the Award was won by Arup Group Ltd. for the Beijing National Aquatics Centre (the Water Cube), which was  built for the 2008 Olympics.  The companies competing this year are:

  • Cobham Technical Services – for a dual sensor landmine detector which reduces the number of false alarms.
  • Inmarsat plc – whose Broadband Global Area Network provides internet access around the world.
  • Lucite International UK Ltd. – for a novel and greener process for making the key ingredient in acrylic plastics.
  • Chas A. Blatchford  & Sons – for a hydraulic ankle-foot for amputees which helps them walk more naturally.

More detailed  information on all four nominated technologies can be found on the Royal Academy of Engineering website.



Vote……. IMechE?

IMechE logoAs the media and pollsters continue to debate the outcomes of the latest televised election debates, the Institution of Mechanical Engineers is hoping to influence the politicians themselves with the launch of a Manifesto for UK Engineering.

The Institution states that “Engineering is at the heart of all things we do as a nation and influences policy and decision making across all government departments” and urges “all political parties to recognise the importance of engineering across all sectors and industries by pledging their support for our Manifesto for Engineering”. Judge for yourself by accessing the manifesto here.

The history of  the Institution of Mechanical Engineers goes back 160 years with past Presidents including George Stephenson, the railway pioneer. The Library offers online access to both current issues  of the Proceedings and the archive dating back to 1847. Alternatively why not search for more IMechE publications using the Compendex engineering database which is available via MetaLib?