- Course: Mechanical Engineering MEng
- Job title: Mechanical Design Engineer
- Company: Guidance Automation
What is the name of the company you work for and what do they do?
Guidance Automation - they provide autonomous vehicle technologies for a variety of applications. Their technology can be used to automate existing manual vehicles, provide navigational systems for AGVs, or replace line-following technology within AGVs.
What is your role within the company?
At Guidance I am their Mechanical Design Engineer. I usually work on a variety projects assigned to me, this can involve working with SolidWorks or out in the workshop manufacturing designs/ assisting with constructing our AGVs.
Can you give me an insight into a typical day?
Typically, I’ll come into work and continue with a current project, either working with SolidWorks or constructing our prototype vehicles in the workshop. We’d then have a standup meeting around 10:30 to discuss what we plan to do that day. Throughout the day I will continue to work on the project. I may also assist production and marketing with whatever they need, for example amending CAD drawings or inspecting CAD models for details.
What do you enjoy the most and do you get involved in any interesting projects?
I really enjoy my job! I’ve been involved with some interesting projects, initially I had to incorporate a vending machine into a shelving unit using scrapped vending machine parts. I designed, manufactured, wired up, and programmed it so the shelving unit would dispense items onto a moving AGV. The idea of this was to demonstrate the capabilities of our AGVs and their navigation.
I’ve also been a part of constructing prototype AGVs, designed to receive and drop off 10-15kg packages at two different conveyor heights. These vehicles were used at trade shows to demonstrate our navigation capabilities. Two of these vehicles got shipped and sold to a company in America for a warehouse application.
Why did you want to undertake a year in industry?
I really wanted to get some experience in a proper mechanical engineering role. I think it’s important for once I leave university, the experience will be what future employers are looking out for.
What do you think you have got out of this experience so far?
I’ve got a lot out of my placement so far, especially developing my CAD skills and confidence in a mechanical engineering role. It will be a massive help once I leave university.
Do you have any tips and advice for current students thinking of undertaking a year in industry?
Go for it! Apply early and keep sending out applications. I got my placement right before exams and started a week after my last exam so it’s never too late.