As fascinating as it is, engineering design can prove difficult to understand without a good grasp of some basic concepts. The following are some terms you will come across often as you explore this vast and compelling discipline.
A technical drawing that shows in detail how to build or develop something.
This term, that may sound curious to modern ears, comes from the 19th century, when the print process used to reproduce technical drawings resulted in white lines on a blue background. Nowadays, engineers often use Computer Assisted Drawing (CAD) to create their blueprints.
A design that shows the individual parts of a mechanism and how they fit together. Click here to visit the NASA website and see an interesting exploded view of the International Space Station (ISS).
This is a type of bar chart that shows a project’s schedule at a glance, allowing project managers to easily visualize different tasks and time frames.
Gantt charts are named after their inventor, Henry Gantt, an American engineer and management consultant who became famous for crafting an effective planning methodology that he used to bring to completion major infrastructure projects, such as the Hoover Dam.
These are preliminary models of a design that allows researchers and engineers to test specific elements without the cost of implementing full-scale development. Prototypes allow engineering designers to test their hypotheses and are considered essential to the product development process.
Stay tuned for the second part of our glossary, where we’ll explore other important terms that will allow you to gain a deeper understanding of the work of engineering designers.
Learn More About Engineering Design
Engineering design is an exciting field with myriad real-life applications. For example, these are some previous posts you can read to learn more about this fascinating topic.
- What is engineering design?
- Engineering design for children: 5 useful benefits
- What is the engineering design process?
- The amazing history behind Roman bridges
- What is Portland Cement?
- What is tilt-up construction?
- The Golden Gate, a photogenic marvel of engineering
Darnell Technical Services is an engineering design firm with extensive experience in PSEP projects.
Our headquarters are located in Santa Ana, California, and we have an office in Las Vegas, Nevada. Contact us today by telephone (714-285-0082 (CA), 702-945-2899 (NV)) or through our social media accounts on Facebook, Twitter, and LinkedIn to learn more about all the technical instruments and materials we put at your disposal.