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March 2017 | MCI (P) 003/03/2017



• Precision Engineering • Mechanical Engineering • Systems Engineering



COVER STORY: 18 Addi ve Manufacturing moves towards produc on of working components The products include prototypes and equipment parts that are no longer being produced


PRECISION ENGINEERING: 20 Obtaining burr-free surfaces reliably and efficiently Technologies for reliable and cost-effec ve processing are presented. 24 Quality Assurance: random-sample measurements do not suffice In future, it will be possible to record 100% of all important measured values. 27 PTC announces Creo 4.0 for smarter design The so ware’s new capabili es are expected to enable designers create ‘products of the future’.


MECHANICAL ENGINEERING: 28 Introduc on to pipeline flow-induced vibra on Computer-based simula on of the phenomenon can lead to less conserva ve and be er designs.

21 President Er. Edwin Khew Vice Presidents Er. Chan Ewe Jin Mr Mervyn Sirisena Er. Ng Say Cheong Er. Ong See Ho Er. Seow Kang Seng Dr Yeoh Lean Weng Honorary Secretary Dr Boh Jaw Woei

Chief Editor T Bhaskaran

Media Representa ve Mul nine Corpora on Pte Ltd sales@mul

Publica ons Manager Desmond Teo

Published by The Ins tu on of Engineers, Singapore 70 Bukit Tinggi Road Singapore 289758 Tel: 6469 5000 I Fax: 6467 1108

Publica ons Execu ve Queek Jiayu

Cover designed by Irin Kuah

Editorial Panel Mr Joseph William Eades Dr Chandra Segaran Dr Ang Keng Been Mr Kenneth Cheong Mr Gary Ong Design & layout by 2EZ Asia Pte Ltd Printed in Singapore

Cover image by Cognizant



CONTENTS MECHANICAL ENGINEERING: 32 Learning to play nice: Mechanical Engineers and the mul -genera onal manufacturing workforce The dierent strengths and limita ons of the various age-groups can be leveraged to advantage.

SYSTEMS ENGINEERING: 34 What is Systems Engineering? The ar cle sets the scene for more discourses on the subject.


36 Design Innova on for a smarter Singapore: a case study on smart energy innova on The results show that it is possible to reduce the energy consump on of the aircondi oning in a residen al building.

30 REGULAR SECTIONS 04 05 14 44 48



The Singapore Engineer is published monthly by The Ins tu on of Engineers, Singapore (IES). The publica on is distributed free-of-charge to IES members and aďŹƒliates. Views expressed in this publica on do not necessarily reflect those of the Editor or IES. All rights reserved. No part of this magazine shall be reproduced, mechanically or electronically, without the prior consent of IES. Whilst every care is taken to ensure accuracy of the content at press me, IES will not be liable for any discrepancies. Unsolicited contribu ons are welcome but their inclusion in the magazine is at the discre on of the Editor. THE SINGAPORE ENGINEER March 2017


From the Editor

A NEW LOOK AND DIRECTION FOR ‘THE SINGAPORE ENGINEER’ The 2017 editorial programme for ‘The Singapore Engineer’ responds to the rapid and o en disrup ve developments taking place, in all sectors of engineering, and their corresponding effects on Singapore. In publishing ‘The Singapore Engineer’, therefore, we will be giving equal importance to the various categories of engineering, so that the magazine strengthens its role as an important source of informa on for engineers, on the emerging technological challenges and solu ons that are becoming more cri cal than ever in an ever changing engineering landscape. We will bring you more exci ng, in-depth and analy cal ar cles of current and future trends, more sta s cal infographics, more local and regional industry news, opinion ar cles for industry honchos, etc. For the past 10 years of publica on as a monthly magazine, The Singapore Engineer has gone through a few changes. This latest round of revamp was made to give ‘The Singapore Engineer’ a more contemporary look and feel, with a new design and layout. This is reflected in the March 2017 Issue. Guiding the implementa on of these changes has been the invaluable feedback obtained from the Reader Experience Survey, conducted between September and October 2016 with IES members. Along the way, we will gather regular feedback from our members to fine-tune and improve the contents. Hopefully, in consequence, ‘The Singapore Engineer’ will become even more relevant to engineers and the engineering profession, in the years ahead, and a true “mouthpiece for the engineers of Singapore”. T. Bhaskaran Chief Editor



… (for) the magazine


(to) its role as an important source of information for engineers, on the emerging

technological challenges and

solutions that are becoming more critical than ever in an ever changing engineering landscape”




North American mobile crane manufacturer, Broderson Manufacturing, introduced two new cab down rough terrain cranes at CONEXPO-CON/AGG 2017 in Las Vegas, Nevada. The 18-tonne rt400, featuring a 68 foot main boom and the 23-tonne rt500, featuring a 76 foot main boom, have produc on delivery dates of March 2017 and June 2017 respec vely. The cranes feature compact footprints for use in ght spaces, stateof-the-art rated capacity limiter systems, air-condi oned cabins and precision controls for increased performance eďŹƒciency. For more informa on, visit:





AIMS TO RECRUIT THE ‘BRIGHTEST MINDS’ In February 2017, Bri sh technology firm Dyson opened the Singapore Technology Centre, its latest research and development facility located at the Science Park. The SGD 587 million R&D centre houses its most advanced labs working on ar ficial intelligence, robo cs, so ware and vision systems, among others. Concentrated in its Global Technology Centre of Excellence, the firm aims to develop Internet-of-Thingscapable products for the smart homes market.

Trade and Industry (Industry) Minister S. Iswaran, who a ended the opening ceremony, was pleased to learn that the Singapore team was closely involved in the development of Dyson’s game-changing technologies and products such as the Digital Motor and the bladeless fan. “The success of this partnership is testament to the strong alignment between Dyson’s ambi on to be a global technology leader, and Singapore’s vision of developing an innova on-led economy,” he said.

Dyson will also leverage on analy cs to be er manage its global supply chain. Currently, it employs 1,100 people in Singapore, split between the Technology Centre and its advanced digital motors manufacturing facility at West Park. There are plans to expand and deepen its presence here, including growing the Singapore-based engineering team by 50 per cent. The firm is seeking highly skilled engineers across a broad range of engineering disciplines including connec vity, motors, sensors, electronics, robo cs, naviga on, so ware and purifica on. At the centre’s official opening, founder and chief engineer Sir James Dyson said that his firm was “on a hunt for the brightest minds”, and expressed his apprecia on for the understanding Singapore placed on the contribu ons of engineers. “It is no coincidence, that to realise our technology ambi ons, we are deepening our commitment to Singapore… Working together, we hope to make more breakthroughs. New technology will catapult us forward,” he added. Dyson sells more than 13 million machines in 75 countries globally, using four billion components from more than 500 suppliers. With manufacturing volumes doubling over the past four years, the firm expects the trend to con nue for the next four.



The acous c lab at the Singapore Technology Centre.

Sir Dyson explaining the technology behind the Dyson 360 Eye robot vacuum to Mr Iswaran. Photo: Dyson



BUILD UP MANPOWER IN LIFT AND ESCALATOR SECTOR To build manpower capabili es in the li and escalator sector, a Sectoral Tripar te Commi ee (STC) will be set up to look into measures to a ract, develop and retain locals in the sector. The STC, comprising representa ves from the Government, industry associa ons, firms, as well as trade unions, will develop a training framework which sets minimum qualifica ons for new entrants and con nual training requirements for exis ng workers. It will also explore career progression pathways by mapping out wages and skills at different levels as well as look into ways to improve the image of the li and escalator sector and its professions to a ract and retain locals.

A Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) was also signed between BCA, NTUC, the Employment and Employability Ins tute (e2i), Singapore Li & Escalator Contractors & Manufacturers Associa on, and ten li and escalator firms. The par es to the MOU will discuss ini a ves on manpower, skills, remunera on, and career development in the sector. They will also support manpower development programmes such as the BCA-Industry Scholarship and Sponsorship programmes, the Earn and Learn Programme, and the Place and Train programmes, among others.

“We need a strong core of skilled workers at all levels to ensure our li s and escalators are regularly and properly maintained to meet the ghtened li and escalator safety requirements. Manpower is also needed to cope with the increase in li s and escalators with more buildings in the pipeline,” said Dr John Keung, CEO of the Building and Construc on Authority (BCA).





COMBAT CYBER THREATS Nanyang Technological University and Israel’s Ben-Gurion University of the Negev (BGU) are collabora ng to find innova ve ways to counter cyber threats. The aim of this joint research project, called the Bio-Inspired Agile Cyber Security Assurance Framework (BICSAF), is to develop innovative technologies for tackling Advanced Persistent Threats. These are stealthy and con nuous computer hacking processes that can be used to target specific en es, such as private organisa ons and state agencies. Their long periods of covertness make it difficult to detect such threats with current technology. NTU Chief of Staff and Vice-President (Research) Prof Lam Khin Yong and BGU Vice-President and Dean (Research & Development) Prof Dan Blumberg signed the joint research agreement at the CyberTech Conference in Tel Aviv, Israel, in February this year. Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu was the event’s guest-of-honour. The project will have three million Singapore dollars in joint funding from NTU, BGU and Singapore’s Na onal Research Founda on (NRF). The collabora on is supported by NRF through its Na onal Cybersecurity R&D Programme.

NTU’s strong hardware-based research exper se and BGU’s so ware-based core competences to combat this intractable problem.” Mr George Loh, Director (Programmes) of NRF and Co-Chair of the Na onal Cybersecurity R&D Programme Commi ee, noted that Singapore has established a holis c na onal cybersecurity strategy that supported the na onal goal of becoming a Smart Na on, while also enhancing Singapore’s standing as a trusted digital hub. “The collabora on between NTU and BGU will explore novel ideas to develop cyber-immune technologies to fight external adversaries that launch cyber-a acks on our cri cal systems, much like how our biological immune system works,” he added. The university’s Department of So ware and Informa on Systems Engineering is the largest in Israel, with significant resources in cyber security research. At the na onal level, BGU has also set up the Cyber Security Research Centre with the Israel Na onal Cyber Bureau to iden fy risks while protec ng cri cal na onal infrastructure.

Led by the Cyber Security Research Centre at NTU, faculty and researchers from both universi es will be involved. Said Prof Lam, “Through this partnership, NTU and BGU will be able to develop innova ve methods for comba ng one of the most complicated problems in cyber security – Advanced Persistent Threats. This project will leverage on



BGU Vice-President and Dean (Research and Development) Prof Dan Blumberg (le ) and NTU Singapore Chief of Staff and Vice-President (Research) Prof Lam Khin Yong (right) complete the formali es to the agreement that will see both universi es collaborate to find innova ve ways to tackle advanced cyber threats. Photo: Gilad Kavalerchik.



NEW FORCE IN DISCRETES, LOGIC AND MOSFETS Nexperia, the former Standard Products division of NXP, today announced the formal comple on of its launch as a separate en ty. Headquartered in Nijmegen, Netherlands and backed by a consor um of financial investors consis ng of Beijing Jianguang Asset Management Co. Ltd and Wise Road Capital Ltd, Nexperia is a stand-alone, world-class leader in Discretes, Logic and Metal-Oxide-Semiconductor Field-Effect Transistors (MOSFETs), retaining all the exper se, manufacturing resources and key personnel of the former NXP division, while bringing a new focus and powerful commitment to these product areas. To find out more, visit: h p://




SINGAPORE’S FIRST AUTOMATED GUIDED VEHICLE PARKING SYSTEM TO BE DEPLOYED AT ROBINSON TOWERS MHE-Demag, the material handling arm of diversified industrial group Jebsen & Jessen (SEA), has been earmarked to deploy Singapore’s first Automa c Guided Vehicle (AGV)-based parking system at Robinson Towers, located on Robinson Road. The system is controlled and managed by a computerised system and provides 90 parking lots for all types of cars weighing up to a maximum of 2,600 kg. Each parking lot can accommodate a vehicle up to 5.3 m long, 2.3 m wide and 2.0 m tall. The AGV, which is the key component of the automa c parking system, carries, manoeuvres and parks vehicles in randomly-determined parking lots. It is a mobile robot that navigates via markers on the ground, and can be supplemented by op cal sensors, magnets, and lasers. With this system, the conven onal car ramp is replaced with a car li for mul -storey parking and the parking of cars at each storey will be handled by its designated AGV.

Compared to mechanised parking systems, MHE-Demag’s solu on eliminates the need for steel suppor ng structures and parking pallets, which means that fire-proofing is also not required. Instead, the cars are placed on AGV pla orms and transported to their rela ve parking bays. The reduced space required between each vehicle increases u lisa on and hence allows more vehicles to be parked within a given space. No addi onal building provision is needed for the system and it can be adapted into exis ng parking systems in buildings easily. According to report in The Straits Times, the me taken to retrieve a vehicle using AGV is approximately a fi h of that taken by mechanised parking systems. The en re parking installa on in Robinson Towers is scheduled for comple on by the end of 2018. Once complete, vehicles owners would only need to drive into the parking bay and the AGV will take over, instead of driving around to look for vacant lots. Retrieval will be facilitated through a mobile app.


INFRASTRUCTURE PROJECTS IN SINGAPORE AND AUSTRALIA Nippon Steel & Sumitomo Metal Corpora on (NSSMC) has delivered about 1,000 tons of HAT-type steel sheet piles to Avenue Engineering Pte Ltd for the construc on of earthretaining walls for a PUB Outlet Drain project in Singapore. Concurrently, NSSMC has also delivered some 2,000 tons of the same product to McConnell Dowell for construc ng earth-retaining walls for a road tunnel project commissioned by the South Australian Department of Planning, Transport and Infrastructure. HAT-type steel sheet piles are predominantly used for marine and river works. They have been adopted for urban civil works as they can be installed quickly and are more stable than the conven onal U- and Z-type sheet piles, have greater interlock integrity and come in a variety of sizes to suit various construc on needs. For more informa on, visit h p:// news/20170124_100.html



Installa on of HAT-type sheet steel piles in a residen al area of Singapore. Photo: Nippon Steel & Sumitomo Metal Corpora on.


(From le ) Mr Teo Eng Cheong, Surbana Jurong’s Chief Execu ve Officer Interna onal (Singapore, Southeast Asia, North Asia) and U Tha Htay, MCEA’s President, at the MOU signing ceremony, held at Sule Shangri-la Hotel, Yangon, Myanmar.


ON HOUSING SOLUTIONS FOR MYANMAR Surbana Interna onal Consultants (Myanmar) has signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) with the Myanmar Construc on Entrepreneurs Associa on (MCEA), as a result of which Surbana Jurong will become the associa on’s lead technical consultant for low cost and affordable housing projects in Myanmar. The MOU was signed by Mr Teo Eng Cheong, Chief Execu ve Officer Interna onal (Singapore, Southeast Asia, North Asia), Surbana Jurong Private Limited and U Tha Htay, President, MCEA. The signing of the MOU comes at an important me as MCEA works with the Myanmar government to meet demand for housing amidst increasing home ownership in the country. The government’s Five-Year Plan aims to deliver 1,000,000 residen al units by 2030. Surbana Jurong will assist MCEA in the development of a low cost and affordable housing prototype design that focuses on 3Cs - Community, Connec vity and Constructability. “Surbana Jurong has built ci es and shaped lives for more than 50 years. We have par cipated in the evolu on of affordable housing in different countries. Our experience allows us to offer engineering and design solu ons specific to Myanmar’s changing needs,” said Mr Teo.

Adding on, Mr Tha Htay said, “The signing of the MOU between MCEA and Surbana Jurong represents an exci ng chapter in the development of low cost and affordable housing in Myanmar. With our local knowledge and Surbana Jurong’s interna onal experience, we hope to realise our vision of helping more people own their homes in Myanmar.” Future homeowners in Myanmar can look forward to living spaces designed to cul vate strong community bonds and preserve the natural environment. A range of community-focused spaces such as courtyards and lobbies will be integrated into the estates to encourage interac on. Landscaped pathways that link residents to ameni es will also be key features of the estates. Surbana Jurong will assist MCEA by employing technology that minimises construc on me and cost without compromising on design, safety and func onality. The MOU with MCEA enhances Surbana Jurong’s presence in Myanmar, since its entry into the market four years ago. Surbana Jurong has provided its exper se in master-planning, architecture and engineering to various residen al and industrial projects including the 220-acre Ayeyarwun-Yadanar affordable housing project in Dagon Seikkan Township. THE SINGAPORE ENGINEER March 2017




TO ENHANCE TUNNEL INSPECTIONS Unmanned Aircra Systems (UAS) and Unmanned Vehicles (UV), be er known as drones, have been touted as the ‘next big thing’ across many industries with their ability to work autonomously and relessly. Seeking to explore this opportunity, the Land Transport Authority (LTA) issued a Request for Informa on (RFI) on 1 March 2017 to evaluate the feasibility and effec veness of using such technology for MRT and road tunnel inspec ons. RFI par cipants have been invited to design and develop suitable trials using UAS, UV and other relevant technologies to conduct automated inspec ons in MRT and road tunnels. The trials will also have to incorporate 360-degree video mapping, include so ware to automa cally detect defects from collected footage, and provide their loca ons. Currently, regular manual inspec ons are carried out to detect anomalies such as cracks or water leakage. Road

tunnel inspec ons also cover rainwater storage tanks and voided slab spaces where u lity lines are located. However, such checks are labour-intensive as they require workers to physically comb the tunnels. The inspec on of rail tunnels is even more challenging as workers can only do so within limited hours at night, a er passenger service ceases. LTA hopes that drone technology will not only improve the accuracy of inspec ons, but also free up engineers’ me, enabling them to focus on analysing the data captured to recommend any necessary remedial measures. The new trials will help to further current research developments and validate UAS and UV technologies under demanding opera onal condi ons. If found effec ve, LTA aims to fully deploy these technologies for tunnel inspec ons in the next five years.


FIRST CARGO SPACECRAFT AS EARLY AS MID APRIL More progress has been made towards China’s first space logis c mission, set for li off in April. The Tianzhou-1 mission will mark a cri cal step in valida ng the China Na onal Space Administraion (CNSA)’s capability to resupply its future orbi ng outpost to keep it opera onal. Tianzhou-1 will launch from the Wenchang Satellite Launch Centre atop a Long March-7 rocket, marking the second mission of China’s future workhorse rocket that debuted last year and will eventually support both cargo and crew launches to the Chinese space sta on.

the Tiangong-1 and 2 modules used by China to master the tools and techniques needed in the opera on of a long-term outpost in space. The cargo vessel is ten meters long and has a launch mass of approximately 13,500 kg.

The shakedown flight for the indigenously-designed cargo spacecra will consist of a five-month mission, three of which will be spent in free flight and two docked to the Tiangong-2 miniature space sta on to test and demonstrate its endurance. Refuelling and docking procedures will be conducted and refined during this period. The Tianzhou cargo spacecra is based on the design of



3D render of Tianzhou-1 (le ) in Earth orbit. Image: CASC



FLEXIBLE TERAHERTZ RADIATION SOURCE FOR FAST AND NON INVASIVE SCREENING Novel invention presents promising applications in spectroscopy, safety surveillance, cancer diagnosis, imaging and communication A major breakthrough in terahertz (THz) technology research at NUS could make portable sensors for explosives, wearable chemical agent detectors, and noninvasive imaging techniques for tumour detec on a reality in the near future. Led by Associate Professor Yang Hyunsoo and Dr Wu Yang from the NUS Department of Electrical and Computer Engineering and the NUS Nanoscience and Nanotechnology Ins tute, the research team has successfully developed high performance and low-power driven THz emi ers. The inven on was achieved in collabora on with researchers from the A*STAR’s Ins tute of Materials Research and Engineering, as well as Tongji University in China. These emi ers can be mass-produced at low cost, addressing a cri cal challenge for industrial applica on of THz technology. Used for the genera on of THz waves, they can also func on on flexible surfaces without compromising performance.

Assoc Prof Yang Hyunsoo (right) and Dr Wu Yang from the NUS Faculty of Engineering and NUS Nanoscience and Nanotechnology Ins tute. Their novel inven on is a major technological breakthrough and addresses a cri cal challenge for industrial applica on of THz technology. Photo: NUS

“Our inven on is a big step forward in THz technology and we believe that this will greatly accelerate its applica on in various fields. For instance … (it) can contribute towards miniaturisa on of bulky THz systems to be used in the detec on of dangerous chemicals and explosives,” explained Assoc Prof Yang.

of chemicals, drugs and explosives, coa ng analysis and quality control of integrated circuit chips.

He also men oned that the lower cost of the emi ers could benefit the healthcare industry in the form of affordable, improved diagnos c devices. Fabrica ng it on flexible surfaces also enables it to be incorporated into wearables.

Making waves in terahertz THz waves have a racted a lot of a en on in the past two decades as they have promising applica ons in a wide range of areas from medicine and surveillance to compu ng and communica on. Being non-ionising as well as non-destruc ve, THz waves can pass through non-conduc ng materials such as clothes, paper, wood and brick, making them ideal for applica ons in areas such as cancer diagnosis, detec on

However, current THz sources are large, mul -component systems that are heavy and expensive. Such systems are also hard to transport, operate, and maintain.

Low-cost, flexible and low-power driven THz emi ers Using metallic thin film heterostructures that are 12-nanometre in thickness, the NUS-developed emi ers produce broadband THz waves with a higher power output than a standard 500-micrometre thick rigid electro-op cal crystal emi er. In addi on, they can be powered by a low-power laser, lowering the opera ng cost substan ally. The research team tested their device on flexible surfaces and found that its performance was not compromised despite being subjected to a large bending curvature. They have filed a patent for the inven on and hope to work with industry partners to further explore various applica ons of this new technology.




MTA2017 TO SPOTLIGHT NEW TECHNOLOGIES WITH SPECIALISED ZONES “As manufacturing con nues to evolve and value crea on has become an integral component of the change process, many tradi onal manufacturing businesses in the Asian region need to become agile and embrace change. The new features, along with the recurring Capabili es Hub, are designed to serve industry players who are looking to leverage on technology and innova on to maintain their market leadership and stay ahead of the change curve,” says Mr. William Lim, Project Director of Machinery Events at Singapore Exhibi on Services, organiser of MTA2017. Lim adds, “More importantly, the newfound knowledge and skillsets will ensure that companies and their workforce will be well-posi oned for growth opportuni es in the new manufacturing era.” Visitors checking out a high-speed compara ve gauging system for inspec on of high-volume manufactured parts at MTA 2015.

MTA2017 – Asia’s premier manufacturing technology industry event returning from 4 to 7 April at the Singapore Expo, will kick off a host of new features - The Op cs & Photonics Innova on Hub, The Semiconductor Innova on Centre, and a 3D Prin ng Seminar at the 3D Prin ng @ MTA feature area. The new feature areas will highlight advanced technologies for high-value manufacturing. In each specialised zone, trade a endees will be exposed to the latest cu ng-edge products and services in the field of op cs and photonics, advanced semiconductor manufacturing and addi ve manufacturing technologies and solu ons. A centrepiece at MTA, the Capabili es Hub gathers local parts and component manufacturers and service providers to highlight their manufacturing competencies in the highvalue sectors of Aerospace, Complex Equipment, Medical Technology and Oil & Gas. Organised in partnership with the Singapore Ins tute of Manufacturing Technology (SIMTech), this area will see local and overseas players converge to network, exchange knowledge, discuss poten al collabora ons and forge partnerships. Held alongside MTA2017, MetrologyAsia2017 is dedicated to showcasing cu ng-edge metrology and inspec on equipment and spotligh ng companies specialising in high-end test and measurement apparatuses and systems. A endees will learn about the latest in metrology solu ons from the top technology providers around the world. 14


With knowledge sharing being a vital element, the conferences at MTA2017 are specially formulated to enhance industry professionals’ insights in new manufacturing concepts. The Smart Manufacturing Asia conference will have industry thought leaders and experts delving into per nent topics and offering prac cal ps in digital manufacturing, Industry 4.0, robo cs and industrial automa on. The Precision Engineering Centre of Innova on (PE COI) Annual Conference and the Interna onal Conference on Op cal and Photonic Engineering (icOPEN), both having seen highly successful edi ons, will return to debate on latest trends and issues facing the precision engineering industry.

MTA2017 AT A GLANCE: Show:

MTA2017 – Manufacturing Technology Asia (held alongside MetrologyAsia2017)

Incorpora ng:

iAutoma on2017, MetalAsia2017, Outsource&SubCon2017, ToolTec2017


4 – 7 April 2017 (Tuesday - Friday)


Singapore Expo

Opening Hours:

10.30am to 6pm daily


Business and trade professionals


Visitor registra on: on/




TREND TOWARDS DIGITALISATION AND AUTOMATION IN THE SHEET METALWORKING INDUSTRY One of the main themes at EuroBLECH 2016, the 24th Interna onal Sheet Metal Working Technology Exhibi on, held in Hannover, Germany, from 25 to 29 October 2016, was the overall trend for digitalisa on and automa on of produc on processes. The innova ve spirit in the industry sector led to a 2% increase in net exhibi on space and visitor numbers compared to the previous event. EuroBLECH 2016, which was organised by Mack Brooks Exhibi ons Ltd, UK, a racted a total of 60,636 visitors from 102 countries. A total of 1,505 exhibitors from 41 countries showcased their products and services on a net exhibi on space of 87,800 m2. The exhibi on survey results confirm both the exhibi on’s renowned standing within the interna onal sheet metal working industry and its posi on as a leading industry event. Furthermore, the survey shows some important industry trends on markets and the economic situa on of the industry sectors. Exhibitors assessed the economic situa on of the sheet metal working industry as much more favourable than two years ago. In the exhibitor survey, almost 70% of the German exhibitors and some 40% of the exhibitors from outside Germany, rated the current economic situa on as posi ve; - an increase by 6% and 5% respec vely, compared to the previous event.

A Flexible Manufacturing System exhibited at EuroBLECH 2016.



According to the exhibitor survey, the main reasons for exhibi ng were to a ract new customers and approach new markets. Major target markets for manufacturers and providers of sheet metal working machines and solu ons were the EU-countries, in par cular Germany, followed by other European countries, Asia and the Americas. When asked about key future markets, exhibitors referred to Germany, the USA, China, Russia and Poland. Interna onal business ac vi es are, therefore, a major focus for the sheet metal working industry. With its high degree in interna onal a endance, EuroBLECH 2016 reflected the importance of global business contacts: Fi yfour percent of exhibitors and 39% of visitors were from outside Germany - an all- me record. Visitor numbers from EU countries, other than Germany, increased by 11%, while that for Asia, increased by 46%. Visitor numbers from the Americas, in contrast, decreased by a quarter. There were some shi s with regard to the top visitor countries: Italy regained its 3rd place in the list of top visitor countries, a er Germany and the Netherlands. While Turkey and the USA had slightly dropped behind, Romania is listed within the top 15 visitor countries, for the first me, and India is also back again in this ranking. EuroBLECH 2018, the next event in the series, will, be held from 23 to 26 October 2018, in Hannover, Germany.

Developments in automa on were highlighted at the exhibi on.


ADDITIVE MANUFACTURING MOVES TOWARDS PRODUCTION OF WORKING COMPONENTS Industries are poised to reap the benefits of this exci ng development. Many industries are already experiencing the strong impact of Addi ve Manufacturing or 3D Prin ng. The ini al applica on of this technology was in the produc on of small- and large-scale display models of buildings and structures, as well as equipment, systems and plants, with a high level of detail and accuracy. According to 3D Ma ers, a Singapore-based Addi ve Manufacturing company, the technology has progressed beyond display shelves, to small components that integrate into working systems and solve opera onal needs. The company believes that, in the next few years, Addi ve Manufacturing will have an important role in the produc on of medium- to large-sized metal components, measuring even up to a few metres, for ‘heavy duty’ industrial sectors such as precision manufacturing, oil & gas, marine, construc on and transporta on. The prin ng of precious metals for jewellery is also expected to leapfrog, given the clear possibili es in customisa on. Market reports have indicated that 3D prin ng will grow rapidly over the next decade, in the areas of directly fabricated jewellery, me-piece components and accessories made from precious metal powder.

Typical prototype produc on can take many weeks or even months. This not only slows down the me-to-market but also tends to increase the number of changes made in each cycle. Addi ve Manufacturing can produce prototypes in two to three days, at a frac on of the tradi onal cost, allowing mul ple revisions before produc on, and significantly shortening the me-to-market. A company had an urgent need to produce prototypes for its new point-of-sale system, in order to check the size and fit of the pieces, before re-commi ng to a full produc on run. But there was insufficient me for the tradi onal prototyping. Accordingly, the company approached 3D Ma ers who obtained the relevant files from the client, and, a er checking for printability and making some minor edits, proceeded to prin ng. The pieces were produced, ready for collec on, with the required paper work, in just four days, from the commencement of work. The client was able to successfully check the fit and put the produc on run back on target.

As innova on in materials con nues, the medical and avia on industries are expected to rapidly adopt the use of metal prin ng for day-to-day applica ons, par cularly when the regula ons in these sectors adapt to new technologies. According to 3D Ma ers, the evolu on that Addi ve Manufacturing has begun to undergo, from being a product development tool to poten ally becoming a full-blown produc on tool, is an extremely clear indica on of its future. Beyond the tradi onal plas cs and polymers, the area that will lead 3D prin ng, in the 21st century, will be metal Addi ve Manufacturing processes such as powder bed fusion, metal binder je ng, and directed energy deposi on.

Prototyping applica on Prototyping is a cri cal step in the design of new or updated parts. It is used to check everything, from look and feel, to fit and func onal performance of the parts, before commi ng to produc on.



The prototypes were produced in just four days.


Prin ng spare parts for older equipment

3D Ma ers

Obtaining spare parts for older equipment can be difficult, as the Original Equipment Manufacturers (OEMs) may have stopped producing the item, or they may have gone out of business altogether.

Founded in Singapore in 2012, 3D Ma ers is an Addi ve Manufacturer, providing end-to-end solu ons across Southeast Asia. Apart from helping clients with scale-accurate models and fast prototyping, the company also enhances the design and manufacturing capabili es of clients, by shortening lead mes for obtaining spares and obsolete parts, as well as speeding up the introduc on of new products into the market.

But, o en, these spare parts are cri cal to maintaining equipment up- me. With its in-house capabili es, 3D Ma ers can ‘reverse engineer’, to create a CAD model and print a new part in a range of metals, including stainless steel 316L, stainless steel PH1, tanium, aluminum and Inconel, to suit the par cular applica on. A client of 3D Ma ers had a contract to maintain vehicles. However, a key part in the vehicles was failing and the original manufacturer no longer produced it. The solu on was to use a replacement part. The design team at 3D Ma ers developed the 3D model, and working together with the client, selected the appropriate stainless steel alloy.

Key industries supported by 3D Ma ers include manufacturing and precision engineering, building and construc on, marine and offshore, electronics and infocomm, as well as adver sing and design. A sister company, 3D Metalforge, which will soon be unveiling its new facility, is dedicated to metal prin ng and will provide industrystandard, cost-effec ve Addi ve Manufacturing solu ons.

A number of the parts were printed and delivered to the client. These parts were installed in the vehicles, which are currently opera onal. The part, which was no longer produced by the manufacturer, could, once again, be created, using 3D prin ng, and installed in the vehicles.

With an extensive range of materials to choose from, Addi ve Manufacturing can extend the fron ers in aesthe cs, through contour cra ing and curvilinear designs, tessella ons and other means.

Gears produced by 3D prin ng. THE SINGAPORE ENGINEER March 2017




RELIABLY AND EFFICIENTLY by Doris Schulz, Journalist, SCHULZ.PRESSE.TEXT, Korntal, Germany

For today’s manufacturers of precision components, there is no ge ng around deburring, rounding and polishing. These produc on steps are o en seen as a some mes costly, yet necessary evil. Use of the right technology permits reliable processing at reduced costs. It is prac cally impossible to fully avoid the occurrence of burrs when using any of the tradi onal metalworking processes. Due to the fact that these manufacturing or processing remnants represent a risk from both a func onal and an ergonomic standpoint, they have to be removed. As was the case in days of old, this is frequently done manually, today. Quite apart from the fact that the necessary process reliability and reproducibility are not assured, this manual work results in high costs and o en leads to me-consuming rework - at the expense of economic efficiency and the company’s compe ve edge. And thus, it is no wonder that deburring, rounding and polishing are o en seen as a costly, yet necessary evil.

Process reliability and costs More and more demanding requirements for process reliability in produc on and product quality, as well as cost pressure in global compe on, necessitate more economic efficiency for the manufacturing steps of deburring, rounding and polishing. At the same me, uniform high quality must be assured in a reproducible manner. Various processes have established themselves towards this end, for example, automated brush deburring, deburring with special tooling which is integrated into the machining centres, barrel finishing and high-pressure water jets. Many of these processes have been further developed in recent years, and new technologies have also been introduced into the market.

In this system for high-pressure water jet deburring, CNC posi oned nozzles which generate water jets, with pressures of up to 50 MPa, remove chips and burrs from cross-holes, threaded holes and deep holes, as well as from inside the workpiece. Image by Zippel.



In the case of surf finishing, by means of which the workpiece is guided by a robot through a rota ng bowl filled with grinding medium, certain areas can be processed selec vely, or different radii can be achieved by variously posi oning the robot arm. Image by Rösler.

A new dimension in barrel finishing Various developments such as drag finishing and surf or stream finishing make it possible to achieve reliable and economic lot processing by means of barrel finishing, for parts which are sensi ve to damage. These could previously be deburred, ground, polished or smoothed only by means of a costly, non-reproducible manual procedure or, at great expense, with the help of a machine. In the case of drag finishing, the parts are clamped to workpiece carriers which are then dragged through a barrel with abrasive par cles or a polishing medium. Uniform flow of the abrasive par cles or polishing medium around all sides of the workpieces results in effec ve but nevertheless gentle processing. Even in the case of workpieces with complex geometries, ideal, reproducible processing results, represen ng ‘hand-made’ quality’, can be achieved within a rela vely short period of me. Surf or stream finishing goes one step further. A robot immerses the workpiece at a precisely defined posi on into the rota ng bowl which is filled with the grinding medium, and accurately guides it. This makes it possible


to selec vely process certain areas, or different radii can be achieved by variously posi oning the robot arm. High grinding pressure is generated by rota ng the bowl while the component is surfing in the grinding medium. This results in intensive, reliable processing with short cycle mes and a surface finish which complies with the specified requirement.

Reliably and quickly removing burrs Not every burr on a geometrically complex workpiece is easy to reach. Thermal Energy Machining (TEM) makes it possible to remove burrs reliably, efficiently and with consistently high quality, where mechanical processing would be either uneconomical or not possible at all. TEM is suitable for components made of nearly all metallic materials and thermoplas cs, from which internal as well as external burrs need to be removed - even from very ‘difficult to access’ places. For the deburring process, the parts are posi oned inside a bell-shaped chamber which is herme cally sealed. A precisely defined mixture of gases (eg oxygen and methane) is fed to the chamber by means of a gas metering system. It flows through the en re component, or the complete batch. The igni on and burning of the gas mixture results in temperatures ranging from 2500° C to 3300° C. The burrs reach igni on temperature and react with the excess oxygen. This causes complete combus on of all burrs within approximately 20 milliseconds (ms) and their roots are also sealed as a result. Due to the fact that the process lasts just a few milliseconds, the workpieces

are only very slightly heated up. No material is removed from the surface. Overall cycle me is usually less than two minutes. TEM makes it possible to achieve ‘sharp-edged / burrfree’ deburring quality. Depending on the material, slight rounding of the edges is also possible. Use of this process is limited by the size of the part as well as when targeted edge rounding is needed during deburring. TEM systems with rectangular deburring chambers are a new development. They are used, for example, to deburr die-cast zinc and aluminium parts as bulk goods. Parts handling is significantly simplified and accelerated as a

New TEM systems with rectangular deburring chambers simplify parts handling and allow for new applica ons. Image by ATL.

Thermal Energy Machining fully removes all burrs within just a few milliseconds (le ). The roots of the burrs are sealed, as well (right). Image by ATL. THE SINGAPORE ENGINEER March 2017



result, because the loaded container can be transferred directly to a parts cleaning system a er TEM deburring. Another possible applica on for systems with rectangular chambers is the deburring of aluminium cylinder heads.

Deburring with addi onal benefit Contactless Electro-Chemical Machining (ECM) has its strengths. The process is based on the principle of electrolysis. The tool, which serves as the cathode, is connected to a source of direct current. The anode is the workpiece itself. An exchange of electrons takes place between the tool and the workpiece, in an aqueous electrolyte solu on, which processes the workpiece in a targeted fashion. On the one hand, this makes it possible to reliably deburr ‘difficult to access’ areas such as edges, undercuts, internal bore intersec ons and pockets at precisely defined loca ons on the workpiece. Cas ng, press moulding and forging flash can also be removed. On the other hand, ECM also makes it possible to produce, for example, highly precise contours, ducts, slots and hollows in a reproducible manner, without any thermal or mechanical stressing. Thus, the ECM process fulfils the more and more frequently specified requirement for burrfree processing - a high quality surface finish. This is also one of the characteris cs of abrasive flow machining, by means of which average roughness (Ra) values off less than 0.01 micrometre can be achieved. The process is used for economically efficient deburring, edge rounding and polishing of internal and external surfaces of components from the automo ve and avia on industries, turbine manufacturing, medical and fluid engineering, food processing, mould and toolmaking, general machinery manufacturing and other industry sectors. Processing is accomplished by means of abrasive par cles, the type, size and concentra on of which are matched to the respec ve tasks, and which are embedded in a polymeric mass of defined viscosity. This grinding medium is made to flow through or over the area of the component to be deburred in alterna ng direc ons at a defined pressure level, by means of hydraulically powered pistons. Deburring, cleaning, rounding and hardening of the surface, are facilitated, in a single step, by the so-called PINFLOW process. The workpieces to be processed are clamped in a part-specific fixture in the PINFLOW machine. The fixture, which is located in the machine’s process chamber, is laid out as a container and filled with a processing medium (small steel balls). Vibrators then cause the fixture to oscillate horizontally, thus resul ng in rela ve mo on between the workpiece and the deburring medium. The resultant kine c energy of the steel balls is transferred to the workpiece in order to process its external and internal surfaces, and the deburring effect is also apparent in ‘difficult to access’ places.



DeburringEXPO Organised by fairXperts GmbH & Co KG, DeburringEXPO 2015, the 1st Trade Fair for Deburring Technology and Precision Surface Finishing, was held from 13 to 15 October 2015, at the Karlsruhe Exhibition Centre, Germany. DeburringEXPO 2017, the 2nd event in the series, will be held from 10 to 12 October 2017, also at the Karlsruhe Exhibition Centre. The exhibition portfolio includes equipment, systems and tools for belt grinding, brushing, abrasive flow machining, vibratory grinding, blasting with solid and liquid media, abrasive water-jet blasting, magnetic-abrasive deburring, ultrasonic deburring, chemical bath deburring, Electro-Chemical Machining (ECM), ElectronBeam Machining (EBM), Thermal Energy Machining (TEM), mechanical deburring, buffing, polish honing, electrolytic polishing, plasma polishing, laser polishing, immersion and brush polishing; measuring, test and analysis systems; and technical literature. Further information is available at

The DeburringEXPO por olio includes solu ons for the automa on of deburring processes. Image by Kadia.




QUALITY ASSURANCE: RANDOM SAMPLE MEASUREMENTS OFTEN DO NOT SUFFICE The German-language scien fic periodical, Bild der Wissenscha , has described Prof Gisela Lanza as the ‘120-per-cent woman’ because, for four years, she worked simultaneously as the first incumbent of the Shared Professorship of ‘Global Produc on Engineering and Quality’ at the Karlsruhe Ins tute of Technology (KIT) and at the automaker, Daimler, in Germany.

In an interview with Nikolaus Fecht, specialist journalist from Gelsenkirchen, Germany, Prof Lanza assesses the new, important role of metrology in Quality Assurance, as a consequence of the increasing impact of Industry 4.0 and the Industrial Internet of Things (IIoT).

Q: How is Industry 4.0 influencing Quality Assurance and metrology? A: Thanks to the increasingly important influence of sensor technology, we will definitely be able to collect very much more measured data, and thus improve our detec on of causal connec ons. I would even venture the hypothesis that in future, we will be recording 100% of all important measured values. Hundred-per-cent tes ng means that quality data (meaning all cri cal parameters) will no longer be acquired by random sampling, but with 100% coverage. This signifies a radical change in Quality Control, because now we can get a whole lot closer to the tolerance limits.

Q: In your opinion, what will the Quality Control of the future look like? A: I am predic ng intelligent, adap ve Quality Control strategies. One example here might be a revival of pairing strategies which produc on people o en hate, because of the complicated mathema cal approach and the logis cal outlay involved. Here, components with different quality features are used in pairs, so as to jointly provide the func ons of an assembly with very high tolerance requirements. One example here is the injectors used in engines, which have to work with an opera ng pressure that, in future, may reach 3,000 bar. Rigorous deployment of inline metrology will enable even more intelligent, component-specific pairings to be used in conjunc on with dynamic modifica on of produc on parameters, which opens up mul farious new op ons.

Q: So will data be increasingly acquired inside the produc on line? A: Yes. There is an ongoing trend towards more inline metrology or even towards process-integrated measuring instruments, permi ng minimised control loops. Measurements are no longer taken in a separate measuring room, but directly in the produc on process. 24


Prof Gisela Lanza. Image by KIT.

This is increasing the demand for metrology, applied in modularised mode, in plants and produc on lines, while standard measuring instruments are less sought a er. Metrology is turning into a project business, in which the customised applica on is the crucial compe ve factor.

Q: Talking of sensor integra on, can a machine tool be converted into a measuring machine? A: This goal has been around for some me, and it con nues to be a very exci ng task. But there are s ll numerous challenges involved, such as high costs and interference factors from the produc on process, like temperature or dirt. What is more, typical metal-cu ng parts o en require a very high degree of measuring accuracy. Users also want an independent metrological framework which ideally enables measurements to be taken in parallel to machining - this is known as concurrent measurement. Measuring with the machine tool, however, is nowadays already standard procedure for high-precision products. One example here is the produc on of diesel injectors at Bosch.

Q: When the machine tool and the produc on process are able to acquire more data with the aid of sensor technology, what does that mean for signal processing in regard to real- me capability? A: In terms of technology, individual sensors are being replaced by distributed sensor networks, because a networked infrastructure is an essen al pre-condi on for using the poten als of inline measurements with maximised efficiency. Users want intelligent, interlinked evalua on of the data concerned. Experts here speak of a fusion of data from several different sensors, which lead to a combined metrological result. In order to explain the complex causal connec ons of a process, data mining algorithms such as neuronal networks are well suited. So the main considera on is that the meaningful data correla ons need to be filtered out.


Q: What role will quality data generated in the factory of tomorrow then play? Can the big-data volume thus created be meaningfully managed and mastered? A: At present, that is s ll not easy to assess. The basic pre-condi on here is a harmonised so ware architecture. Once this has been established as a basis with harmonised data structures and interfaces, I am expec ng it to be design-enhanced by a gradual increase in complexity - from data acquisi on all the way through to adap ve, self-learning control loops.

Q: How can the different worlds - meaning shop floor (the machine tool industry), networking (the web) plus hardware and so ware (metrology) be frui ully reconciled? A: Because the classical automa on pyramid, from the process itself, all the way up to the corporate level, is disappearing, cross-level informa on interchange is essen al. In this context, the Manufacturing Execu on System (MES), opera ng close to the process, is gaining steadily in perceived importance. Unfortunately, you see, it would appear impossible, in the next few years, to directly u lise and evaluate the data from sensors, without an MES. What is more, we need harmonised interface standards like OPC/UA, a standard that is currently gaining wide acceptance for automa on technology.

Q: But the alleged necessity for real- me control now appears to be hampering progress, a bit. So, does everything really have to be run in realme? A: No. Then, there will just be three non-conforming parts. From number four, once again, specifica oncompliant parts will be manufactured.

Q: Talking of China, as the Director of the Global Advanced Manufacturing Ins tute (GAMI) in Suzhou, you have also had a good look at the Quality Assurance opera ons there. What differen ates the strategies of the Chinese produc on facili es from those of Europe’s industrial sector? A: In Europe, the dominant category is the older brownfield plants which equip their exis ng lines with sensor technology. In China, there is a major trend towards new greenfield plants which fit their new lines with large amounts of immanent sensor technology. I am observing in China, a readiness to make very substan al investments in Industry 4.0. They are spending a whole lot of money on hardware - o en in conjunc on with automa on. However, I see this as problema c, because Industry 4.0 and the requisite system competence are not things you can buy. A er all, what use is even the best of measuring machines to me, if I do not understand the system involved? It is auspicious for China, though, that the significantly younger workforces there are much more recep ve to IT applica ons. But o en, there is s ll a lack of basic comprehension of how control loops actually work.

High-precision measurements: the workpiece scanning system is calibrated under program control, before the machine operator uses it to measure his workpiece with maximised accuracy. Image by Heidenhain.

Q: Can you cite an example of best prac ce? A: I see the Bosch Group as a leading key user, embracing full-coverage, harmonised use of its own MES and IoT so ware, which it also sells as a key vendor, so as to link up process, measured and other data.

Q: You are also familiar with global produc on strategies. Are there interna onal differences in terms of Quality Assurance? A: In what are called the ‘emerging markets’, meaning the present-day, low-cost na ons, tes ng is s ll o en being performed in the tradi onal manner, at the end of the process chain. But the sheer speed of change here is breath-taking. In China, par cularly, there is enormous recep veness for Industry 4.0. The predominant a tude there is “If I am inves ng, then I am going to spend my money on the very latest technology”.

Encapsulated length measuring instruments facilitate posi on measurement in the machine tool, independent of thermal and other influences from the ball screw drive. Image by Heidenhain.





TO FEATURE DEVELOPMENTS IN METROLOGY The trend towards the adop on of Industry 4.0 will mean the increasing integra on of metrology with the machines involved in produc on. To enable a machine tool to also make ultra-accurate measurements, it has to meet various technical pre-condi ons. These include both precise posi on measurements and an accurate scanning system, plus a control system that is able to process and evaluate the relevant data. Some of the interes ng design enhancements and new products from the fields of control systems and metrology, will be among the exhibits at EMO Hannover 2017, the interna onal trade fair for the metalworking industry, which will be held from 18 to 23 September 2017, in Hannover, Germany.

EMO HANNOVER 2017 EMO Hannover 2017 will showcase the en re range of metalworking technologies, which is at the heart of every industrial produc on process. In addressing the theme ‘Connec ng systems for intelligent produc on’, the exhibi on will focus on networking and digitalisa on. EMO Hannover 2017 will display the latest machines, efficient technical solu ons, product-support services, sustainable solu ons for the produc on process, and more. The subjects covered by the exhibi on include metal-cu ng and forming machine tools, produc on systems, highprecision tools, automated material flow systems, computer technology, industrial electronics and accessories.

The event is expected to a ract trade visitors from all major sectors of industry, such as machinery and plant manufacture, automo ve engineering and component supply, aerospace, precision mechanics and op cs, shipbuilding, medical technology, tool and die manufacture, steel and lightweight construc on. According to VDW (German Machine Tool Builders’ Associa on), the organisers of the event, as at mid-March 2017, around 2,000 exhibitors from 42 different countries have confirmed their par cipa on. That means that this year, the event is well on its way to topping the record figures achieved by EMO Hannover in 2013. In 2013, the fair a racted more than 2,130 exhibitors and around 143,000 trade visitors, from more than 100 different countries. The major exhibitors at EMO Hanover 2017 include DMG Mori, Mazak, Fanuc, FFG, Grob, Doosan, Okuma, Makino and Siemens. Numerous suppor ng events will also be held, designed to address and progress important technical and commercial issues in the world of metalworking, to complement the range of exhibits and provide visitors with a comprehensive picture of the trends and issues in metalworking. EMO is a registered trademark of the European Associa on of the Machine Tool Industries (CECIMO).

EMO Hannover 2013 a racted more than 2,130 exhibitors and around 143,000 trade visitors, from more than 100 different countries.





FOR SMARTER DESIGN PTC recently announced the release of the latest version of its Creo CAD so ware. Creo 4.0 introduces new capabili es for the Internet of Things (IoT), Addi ve Manufacturing, Augmented Reality and Model-Based Defini on (MBD). The so ware enables smarter design and greater produc vity, with a vast array of core modelling enhancements and new func onality that allow designers to create ‘products of the future’. Key enhacements in Creo 4.0 include the following:

Smart Connected Product Design With Creo 4.0, product developers can take advantage of IoT to be er understand how products are used and behave, to improve design decisions. The solu on provides the ability to pull real-world informa on back into the design process. It also enables a ‘design for connec vity’ strategy, where developers produc vely design products with custom data streams, by integra ng sensors into the design process.

Creo 4.0 enables designers to successfully implement Model-Based Defini on.

Addi ve Manufacturing Creo 4.0 removes barriers to efficient design of produc on parts built with Addi ve Manufacturing techniques. It delivers ‘design for Addi ve Manufacturing’, enabling designers to design, op mise, validate and run a printcheck, in a single environment. With the ability to create parametrically controlled la ce structures, the sofware enables designers to op mise models, to meet mul ple design objec ves or constraints.

Augmented Reality Creo 4.0 allows for more engaging informa ve visual experiences of designs, by bringing the digital product line into the physical world. With the so ware, designers can seamlessly reuse CAD data, to easily create engaging and informa ve visual Augmented Reality experiences of a design, with a realisi c sense of size, scale and context.

Model-Based Defini on Creo 4.0 enables designers to successfully implement MBD and increase efficiency in product development, by reducing dependency on 2D drawings. The so ware enables designers to reduce the errors that result from incorrect, incomplete or misinterpreted informa on, by guiding and educa ng them in the proper applica on of Geometric Dimensioning and Tolerance informa on (GD&T). Creo 4.0 also ensures that the GD&T is captured in the 3D CAD model, in a fully seman c way; that the model is compliant with ASME and ISO standards; and that it constrains model geometry to enable efficient and error-free downstream use in manufacturing and inspec on.

Creo 4.0 has the ability to create parametrically controlled la ce structures.





by Dr Ma Straw, Norton Straw Consultants and Alex Read, Siemens PLM So ware Pipeline and piping vibra on can cause a range of issues, from reduced process efficiency and unplanned shutdowns to decreased equipment life or even loss of containment. It is an issue for engineers designing systems in many industries and has been of specific concern in subsea oil and gas, in recent years. This ar cle focuses on the phenomenon termed flow-induced vibra on (FIV), where the internal flow of process fluids within a pipeline or piping system causes some form of vibra on of the pipe. FIV is a complex mechanism and one in which engineering design has tradi onally relied on empirical methods for its avoidance. Empirical design methods are o en, necessarily, conserva ve. High levels of conserva sm can result in engineers iden fying vibra on risks that constrain designs or limit opera ons. Here, we aim to present how computer-based simula on of flow and structural behaviour can offer engineers greater understanding in cases where empirical approaches have iden fied poten al vibra on issues. The most cri cal aims of pipeline and piping system design are to minimise the risk of pipe vibra on and to improve safety, reliability and efficiency of process and produc on opera ons. Through engineering simula on, we may be able to meet these aims while reducing conserva sm and cost.

Causes of FIV FIV of pipelines and piping can be caused by a number of mechanisms including: • Pumps and compressors which could produce pressure pulsa ons, exci ng a response in nearby piping • Fluctua ng flow past obstruc ons or objects in the flow (for example, thermowells or other intrusions in the flow) and piping dead legs • Mul phase flow - for cases with flowing mul ple phases (for example, gas and liquid), specific mul phase flow regimes and flow frequencies through piping may drive vibra on (for example, slug flows where packets of liquid impact the walls of the pipe at bends, elbows and obstruc ons) • Rapid changes in flow condi ons or fluid proper es, caused by opening valves, cavita on or other large pressure varia ons, leading to changes in state, for example, flashing of liquids into vapour.


of FIV, when designing new plant, assessing or modifying exis ng pipework or assessing an iden fied problem in an opera ng system. But what happens in the event that an unacceptable vibra on risk is iden fied? Using the EI approach, the engineer has three op ons: • Redesign or re-support the pipe sec on • Perform detailed analysis • Carry out vibra on monitoring during opera on While re-design may be possible for new facili es, the number of op ons available for design modifica ons in exis ng facili es is o en severely limited. Where designs cannot be changed, the op ons are limited to detailed analysis or monitoring vibra on during opera on. If the monitoring approach is taken, it could be costly to install and, if vibra on is subsequently observed, it could result in opera ng restric ons with significant economic impacts on a process or produc on rates. The op on of performing detailed analysis could be the preferrable choice, offering engineers greater understanding of the vibra on risk or the actual response of the system to the required opera ng condi ons. The challenge here is “what is detailed analysis?” While there is very li le in terms of industry best prac ces currently available, there are analysis and simula on approaches that engineers can turn to, in order to further assess the risk of vibra on.

Vibra on assessment using EI guidelines Figure 1 shows a piping system that was ini ally inves gated using the EI guidelines.

Iden fying FIV risk

The system is based on piping at an exis ng process facility being reviewed, to accommodate an upgrade in the process, with the aim of increasing process flow rates.

The seminal guidance document used in the field of FIV is published by the UK-based Energy Ins tute (EI). This provides a very clear method to determine the likelihood

Table 1 summarises the findings of the empirical assessment for three opera ng cases assessed. For a number of vibra on mechanisms, the pipe work is iden fied as having vibra on



risk and requires more detailed inves ga on. Flow-induced pulsa on, vortex-induced vibra on (VIV) from flow past intrusive elements (the thermowells), and small bore connec ons, were all iden fied as limi ng at least two of the three opera ng cases assessed. Using mul -phase flow maps, the flow regime was es mated to be dominated by annular flow (where a liquid film forms and flows along the pipe walls), and so slug flow was not iden fied as a poten al vibra on mechanism. The failure to meet the requirements of the EI guidelines means that we need to re-design the system, perform detailed analysis or install monitoring equipment. In this case, we will look into detailed analysis and assess how an engineer could gain further informa on to make an informed decision on how to proceed.

Full system flow and structural analysis With modern compu ng capabili es, it is now more prac cal than ever to simulate flow and structural responses of larger systems, even using desktop worksta ons. In this case, we will demonstrate how the flow field within the piping can be simulated and used, to predict the subsequent structural response of the system. The two modelling approaches used for the piping system (shown in Figure 1) were:

Figure 1: Pipe sec on layout


Case 1

• Computa onal Fluid Dynamics (CFD) to simulate the flow. This was performed using the STAR-CCM+ so ware (by Siemens PLM So ware) • Finite Element Analysis (FEA) to assess the structural response. This used wave6 FEA so ware (by wave six), a frequency domain vibro-acous c so ware package designed specifically to assess noise and vibra on. In the situa on where flow-induced pipe deflec ons are large, it may be necessary to perform a two-way coupled fluid-structure simula on, where the flow-driven deflec ons of the pipe feed back to impact the flow through the pipe. In the case presented, this was not necessary and a one-way coupling approach was adopted. The flow results were used to predict structural response, but this was not fed back to the flow simula on, since it would have had negligible effect. CFD simula on of the mul -phase flow through the piping confirmed the flow regime was dominated by annular flow for all three opera ng cases, with some liquid carried in a dispersed manner (as large droplets). Figure 2 shows results from the CFD analysis, illustra ng contours of liquid speed on interfaces that exist between the gas and liquid phases present in the flow. It is clear that there is a gas-liquid interface near the pipe wall, confirming the dominant annular flow regime. In addi on, large droplets of liquid are carried along in the gas, through the main bore of the pipe, shown in red. The CFD simula on demonstrated that no slug flow occurred through the system, which corroborated the empirical assessment made in the EI guidelines approach. CFD simula on suggested that some flow-induced pulsa on was occurring, both in the thermowell housing as well as in the main ver cal dead leg. This was indicated by the fluctua ng pressures recorded in the relevant areas. Detailed analysis of the flow around the thermowells (not presented here) showed no signs of adverse response or loading through the onset of vortex-induced vibra on, which is contrary to the findings of the EI method.

Case 2

Case 3

Flow induced turbulence Flow induced pulsation Slug flow VIV from intrusive elements small bore connections

Further action required: redesign, further detailed analysis and/or vibration monitoring Further action: only visual inspection for good, as analysed construction Table 1: Results from EI guidelines assessment of three opera ng condi ons for pipe sec on considered




Figure 3 shows the frequency content of the flow-induced pressures on the pipe wall. Two dominant spectral peaks can be observed, as generated by the flow, at 4 Hz and 32 Hz. These two spectral peaks were inves gated further and it was iden fied that: • the 4 Hz peak was the characteris c frequency of the large liquid droplets passing through the pipe • the 32 Hz peak was related to the liquid film interac on with the first thermowell housing (dead leg) The frequency content of the flow-induced forcing on the pipe can be compared to the natural frequencies of the pipe system, which were calculated using wave6. The natural frequencies of the system are shown in Figure 4 and are generally higher than much of the spectral content in the flow-induced pressure signal captured on the pipe walls from the flow simula ons. This indicates that the forcing func on induced by the flow on the pipe system is unlikely to excite these natural structural modes.

both the forcing func on obtained from the CFD model and the impedance of the structure and fluid. Figure 5 shows the pointwise maximum Von Mises stress for one of the opera ng cases. It can be seen that the peaks correspond to the structure’s modal frequencies (shown in Figure 4) and that there are no ‘line-up’ effects, where a forcing frequency (from the fluid) and a modal frequency coincide, to produce excessive vibra on. While results presented are for a single opera ng condi on, the same process (involving CFD and FEA) was undertaken across the opera ng range, and no significant changes in system response was observed. This insensi vity to flow condi ons suggests that the overall levels and peak values in the structural response are being sustained by wall turbulence rather than by specific mechanisms exci ng structural modes. No significant vibra on risks were iden fied by the analysis.

To complete the inves ga on, a one-way coupled analysis was undertaken. Here the forcing func ons predicted from the CFD analysis were applied to the wave6 FEA model, to assess the response. A vibro-acous c model was solved to yield the forced response of the system, taking into account

Figure 4: Natural mode shapes and frequencies of the pipe work

Figure 2: Contours of liquid speed on gas-liquid interfaces

Figure 3: Surfaceaverage RMS pressure on internal pipe wall



Figure 5: Pointwise maximum Von Mises stress




LEARNING TO PLAY NICE: MECHANICAL ENGINEERS AND THE MULTI GENERATIONAL MANUFACTURING WORKFORCE by Gary McCormick I graduated with a Mechanical Engineering degree, in 1981, just as slide rules were making the transi on to affordable, powerful engineering calculators. That is right - slide rules and calculators. And I made my drawings on actual drawing boards. Desktop computers and computerised design and dra ing were s ll, at least, a decade in the future. Obviously, the manufacturing workforce has changed much in my 34 years at a West Coast division of a major US defence contractor. Today, I work with 3D-CAD-savvy Mechanical Engineers who may have never used a 2D-CAD system, let alone created a drawing on a drawing board - with pencil and paper. They also bring an en rely different a tude to the job. A case in point: A 20-something engineer took on design modifica ons for a hardware item that is my ul mate design responsibility. He did good work brainstorming design op ons and running tests in the lab (the interes ng stuff). But just as the design changes were being finalised, and the rela ve drudgework of documenta on was beginning, the engineer took a year off to travel the world. Where did that leave me? Upda ng the drawings and revising the field-maintenance documents - not to men on ques oning the commitment of millennial engineers. Today’s manufacturing workforce comprises genera ons from post-war baby boomers (born 1946 - 1964) to freshfaced millennials (born 1982 - 2000s). These workers grew up during the most rapid rate of technological advancement in human history. Although cultural and technological differences between genera ons affect every workplace, in Mechanical Engineering-related industries, technological disparity lies at the very heart of the work experience. It is like speaking radically different dialects of the same language.

Genera onal strengths and weaknesses Given that Mechanical Engineers are mee ng in the office and on the shop floor, with different sets of tools and experiences, how can all genera ons capitalise on each other’s strengths and shore up each other’s weaknesses, to bring out the best that they have to offer? Admi edly, that sen ment does smack a li le of the 1960s-era hippies who were part of my genera on. O en reviled as the ‘Me Genera on’, baby boomers (especially early boomers) are close to the altruis c virtues of the World War II period. Boomers grew up against the backdrop of the Cold War and the go-for-broke enthusiasm of the US space program, when the power of engineering came to the forefront of the American experience. So, they some mes take a proprietary a tude - a feeling of ownership, born of being the genera on that created much of the technology that modern society depends upon. I am guilty of it: Social-media technologies are really ‘remaking the world’? It is just programming. My genera on designed the hardware technology that gives that social-media programming a pla orm. Gen X engineers, on the other hand, grew up in a society marked by the cynicism of the Vietnam War, the hopefulness of the Cold War’s end, and the watchfulness of the post-9/11 terrorist threat. They were the first latchkey kids, many having two working parents, so they learned independence from a young age, and had less respect for authority. Millennials are in a class all their own. They have largely never known life without the Internet. Coming of age in a connected world, millennial engineers bring a new set of expecta ons to

Model created, today, using a 3D CAD (Computer-Aided Design) systems.

At one me, slide rules were used to make calcula ons.




the workplace. Doubt and uncertainty cloud their horizons, marked by growing concerns over the environment, worldwide financial situa ons, and more - yet they o en embrace an op mis c outlook and feel that America’s best years lie ahead.

What and how can we learn from one another? Some challenges facing the modern engineering workforce stem from issues of age and experience vs youth and enthusiasm. Understanding each other’s point of view is key to workplace coopera on. Remember that 20-something engineer I noted earlier? Had management been more in tune with his skills and preferences, the company might have retained a talented team member. Instead, management insisted on using the same task-assignment paradigms that had always worked in the past and lost both an engineer and his experience with our systems. It is equally important to ensure that knowledge is not lost as the boomers age out of the workforce. My employer faced an experience gap when the development of a major weapons system went flat for 10 years, leading to a long hiatus in engineering hiring. With the announcement of that system’s next update, the organisa on began interviewing the engineers involved in the design development of the outgoing system, many who were nearing re rement age. The result was a collec on of white papers that captured the sort of experien al ‘tribal knowledge’ that would guide the engineers designing the updated system. The value of that type of material, of course, lies in its dissemina on to the up-and-coming engineers who may or may not be recep ve to reading it. To reinforce experience-based informa on transfer, lead engineer/subordinate engineer rela onships are immensely valuable. I received this kind of informal leadership-by-example training - a kind of osmo c learning experience impossible to duplicate in a formal training environment, and, in turn, gained respect for the shop personnel who fabricate, assemble, and test the equipment I design. Studies show that this type of hands-on, experien al learning alongside more experienced engineers appeals to millennials, too.

Leveraging genera onal differences To fully exploit the disparate quali es of mul -genera onal engineers, the ‘lone genius’ and the design team have to work together. Whereas older engineers look to engineering lone geniuses such as George Wes nghouse, Thomas Edison, and Henry Ford, gen X and millennial engineers bring a mindset that values design teams. Most have taken college classes that feature group working environments and collabora ve design development. Design teams may conjure the spectre of design-by-commi ee mediocrity, especially for older engineers, but when properly implemented, this approach marries the guiding quali es of experienced team members with the fresh ideas of younger engineers. The lack of this approach, however, can cause frustra on for new engineers during their first few years on the job, leading some to look for careers outside of engineering. Learning to recognise the valuable quali es of the mul genera onal workforce is important to fully u lising the brilliant minds drawn to Mechanical Engineering. Because at

the core of it all, Mechanical Engineers - boomers, gen Xers, and millennials, alike - just want to make stuff. So why not figure out a way to make stuff together? (Gary McCormick is a Mechanical Engineer in Silicon Valley who has more than 34 years of experience in Mechanical Engineering design, produc on, and tes ng. He has been pursuing a side career as a freelance writer, since 2011. This ar cle is adapted from an ar cle that originally appeared on Autodesk’s Redshi , a site dedicated to inspiring designers, engineers, builders, and makers).

Autodesk introduces por olio for the ‘future of manufacturing’ Autodesk unveiled its por olio of solu ons for addi ve and subtrac ve manufacturing, at the Interna onal Manufacturing Technology Show 2016 (IMTS 2016), held in Chicago, USA. Within the por olio offerings are cloud-connected capabili es designed to help users experience the benefits of a more cohesive manufacturing workflow and invest more me in product development. AUTODESK’S MANUFACTURING PORTFOLIO Autodesk HSMWorks: a fully integrated CAM solu on for SOLIDWORKS, allowing users to get up to speed and become produc ve within minutes, using familiar tools and workflows. Autodesk Inventor HSM: Helps CNC programmers, designers and engineers rapidly produce machined parts, designed in virtually any CAD system. Autodesk 2017 CAM Products: With offerings for a mul tude of advanced manufacturing applica ons, these new products combine the heritage of industry leadership in CAM so ware from Delcam with Autodesk’s 3D design and manufacturing prowess. Solu ons include FeatureCAM for automa ng CNC programming; PartMaker for precision part manufacturing with Swiss-type lathes; PowerMill for programming the most complex moulds, dies and other components; PowerShape for preparing complex models for manufacture; and PowerInspect for inspec on in every environment. Autodesk Ne abb: All the so ware needed to reduce costs, increase efficiency and improve part performance in addi ve manufacturing and 3D prin ng. Fusion 360: The centre-piece of Autodesk’s cloud-based product innova on pla orm, Fusion 360 combines CAD, CAM and CAE in a single package. It allows users to take their designs all the way to produc on, with included 3D prin ng capabili es as well as HSMpowered toolpath technology for 2- through 5-axis milling machines, turning centres and waterjets.




WHAT IS SYSTEMS ENGINEERING? by Chua Boon Heng, Principal Engineer and Teo Siow Hiang, CEng(S’pore) (Systems), Assistant Director, Defence Science and Technology Agency (DSTA), and Peter L Jackson, Professor and Head of Engineering Systems and Design Pillar, Singapore University of Technology and Design (SUTD) This introductory ar cle, contributed on behalf of the IES Systems Engineering Technical Commi ee, will serve as a prelude to future ar cles that will showcase notable developments in Singapore which have applied SE. In land-scarce Singapore, Systems Engineering (SE) has been effec ve in harnessing the limited resources and manpower to meet our social, economic and defence needs. Since the 1960s, we have applied a systems approach in public housing, water management, traffic management, educa on and air defence. Thanks to many visionary SE prac oners, it is not difficult for us to see the successful and cost-effec ve realisa on of many cri cal systems/infrastructures such as the Container Ports, Changi Airport, the MRT system, Water & Power Supply and Distribu on Systems, as well as Defence and Security Capabili es. Collec vely, it has enabled Singaporeans to enjoy a world-class living standard. In this age of complexity, the benefits of SE include not being caught out by omissions and invalid assump ons, managing ever-changing real-world concerns, and producing efficient, economic and robust solu ons that address real needs. The SE approach ensures that project costs and schedules are managed and controlled more effec vely, by having greater control and awareness of the project requirements, interfaces, issues, and the consequences of any change.

What’s that you say? A system? Before defining SE, let us define a ‘system’. Mul ple parts do not necessarily form a system. For instance, a bowl of raisins consists of many singular raisin parts. If you remove some of them, it is s ll a bowl of raisins. You can remove and/or add parts to a heap without much change. Contrast this bowl of raisins to a true system represented by, for example, a car. Removing one of the wheels of the car would result in considerable degrada on of its func on. In other words, removing a part would result in significant changes. Another view of a system is that its whole is greater than the sum of its parts. That is, the many interac ons and rela onships among parts in a system give rise to quali es or proper es that are not present in the parts by themselves. These quali es or proper es are some mes referred to as ‘emergent’. An example of this would be what audiences experience when an orchestra plays. We use adjec ves to describe a symphony, that are different from those we use to describe the tonal notes of each instrument. Summing it up, a system is a construct of different elements that together produce results not obtainable by the elements alone. The value added by the system as a whole is beyond 34


the value that is contributed independently by its parts. This is primarily created by the rela onship of the parts, in other words, by how they interconnect and interact. Without mutual interac on, different elements brought together would not qualify as a system.

Defining Systems Engineering So then, what is SE? The Interna onal Council on Systems Engineering (INCOSE) sums it up, as follows: “Systems Engineering is an interdisciplinary approach and means to enable the realisa on of successful systems”. SE is an engineering discipline with the responsibility of crea ng and execu ng an interdisciplinary prac ce and process to ensure that the customer’s and stakeholders’ needs are sa sfied in a high quality, trustworthy, costefficient and schedule-compliant manner, throughout a system’s life cycle. SE is focused on the system as a whole, and never on its parts, in isola on. Externally, it looks at the system’s interac ons with other systems and the environment. Internally, it examines the interac ons of the various abstrac ons (sub-systems, components) that make up the system. It is concerned not only with the engineering design of the system, but also with external factors which can significantly constrain design (Figure 1). This allows prac oners to gain a systems perspec ve (systems thinking) and enables decision-makers to understand the strategic benefits and weigh the macro-level trade-offs, without which the proposed solu on may not make engineering or economic sense.



Figure 1: Systems Engineering: Addressing interac ons between poli cal, social, economic and environmental factors, and mul ple stakeholders.





A case in point, the 12-km long Kallang-Paya Lebar Expressway (KPE) was, at its incep on, the longest underground expressway in Southeast Asia, with some daun ng challenges and in mida ng construc on costs, for a rela vely short road. Based on engineering considera ons alone, the decision to build underground would have been hard to jus fy. However, when the effort and costs involved were balanced against the projected posi ve payoffs from freeing surface land for alterna ve uses, me saved by road-users as well as higher produc vity for businesses and manufacturers, then the KPE’s long-term viability became quite obvious. Adop ng a systems approach enabled the planners and engineers to manage compe ng demands and uncertain es, and eventually deliver a balanced solu on.

design. Further, the model for the preferred design can be expanded and used to help manage the system throughout its en re life cycle. The designs are then specified and manufacturing of the system building blocks begins. The process of verifica on starts when the manufactured blocks are compared to their specifica ons to ascertain if they can be accepted. When the building blocks are ready, integra on at the system level takes place. Integra on means bringing parts together so that they work as a whole. The interfaces between these parts must be designed and managed. When the system is finally put together, valida on takes place to demonstrate that the needs that were defined are met by the system. A er valida on, the system is ready to be operated and sustained ll its eventual decommission.

The Systems Engineering process

What makes a Systems Engineer?

SE is a strategy to solve problems. It is about communica on, structure, process, and performance. The basic methodology is as follows: • Understand a problem before a emp ng to solve it • Examine alterna ve poten al solu ons that sa sfy the given constraints • Verify that the selected solu on is correct • Deliver the solu on within constraints and sustain it through its life cycle.

Everyone prac ces some form of SE in their career, but SE is a career in itself for a few. Prac oners typically have prior training in established fields of Engineering, and later in their career, apply systems thinking and SE perspec ves to design, develop and sustain complex systems through their life cycles. Over the years, organisa ons prac sing SE have built competency models to help define and manage competencies of their Systems Engineers. An example of a competency model from the MITRE Corpora on is presented in Figure 3.

The Vee life cycle model is one such SE model. Figure 2 shows the rela onship between SE ac vi es or ‘processes’.

In Singapore, one of the routes to being recognised as a proficient SE prac oner is via a professional accredita on framework administered by IES - The Chartered Engineer Scheme. Professional cer fica on benefits both employers and engineers. To find out how you can be cer fied as a Chartered Engineer in Systems Engineering, please visit h p://

Figure 2: Vee life cycle model (source: h p://

One key ques on that is asked in SE is “Are we solving the right problem?” In order to correctly state the problem, the Systems Engineer must first be able to understand the problem space. This can be complex, but it is essen al to understand the needs (true underlying needs, not just the perceived needs) of customers and stakeholders, and translate them into ac onable requirements. With the requirements established, alterna ve designs are created and evaluated, based on performance, schedule, cost, and risk figure of merit. Selec ng a design would be simple, if it is the best of all the figures of merit, but that is o en not the case. Mul -criteria decision-aiding techniques are used to reveal the preferred design. Similarly, models (eg analy c equa ons, computer simula ons or func onal flow diagrams) can be developed for alterna ve designs to establish the preferred

Figure 3: MITRE Corpora on’s Systems Engineering competency model





A CASE STUDY ON SMART ENERGY INNOVATION by Wayes Tushar, Subarna Basnet, Chau Yuen, Yunjian Xu and Kris n Wood, Singapore University of Technology and Design (SUTD), Singapore Ci es as we know them today are drama cally changing. Our living environments are altering the way we live, and this presents a unique opportunity for us to remake and reinvent our ci es to make them more sustainable, innova ve, agile, and ready for the years to come.

INTRODUCTION While sustainability has become a global issue, and is a rac ng significant a en on by world leaders in recent years, Singapore began prac sing sustainable development before the Brundtlad Commission coined the phrase ‘sustainable development’ in 1987 [Soon, 2010]. The Brundtland Commission (or the World Commission on Environment and Development) was convened by the United Na ons in 1983 amidst growing concerns about environmental deteriora on and the impact of this on economic and social development. It defined the term ‘sustainable development’ as that which ‘meets the needs of the present without compromising the ability of future genera ons to meet their own needs’, in its 1987 Report. Now, although the challenges have become vastly different than those in 1987, the priority remains the same - catering for economic growth and good quality life, maintaining a clean and green environment, and making the best use of Singapore’s resources [Urban Redevelopment Authority, 2012]. To address these priori es, innova ve and sustainable solu ons are necessary in every aspect of city life including sustainable water solu ons, sustainable and smarter energy solu ons, intelligent transporta on systems, crea ng green and blue spaces, intelligent and improved drainage, improved air quality, elderly care, climate mapping, and community stewardship [Urban Redevelopment Authority, 2012], [Ministry of the Environment and Water Resources, 2015]. However, due to increasing complexity arising from the rich interplay between different structures (such as water, air, energy, waste, public spaces and commu ng; different technological systems; and socio-economic factors to address these challenges), urban ci es like Singapore can be thought of as a highly complex system, which cannot be described just by a simple summa on or aggrega on of its different parts. 36


As such, Singapore, with its futuris c and high-tech Smart Na on vision, has focused on Systems Engineering to undergo a tremendous transforma on over the past five decades, from a largely rural town with squa er colonies to a cosmopolitan city. Today, despite being one of the most densely-built urban environments, Singaporeans live and work in modern buildings that have quality design and high safety standards, travel across the island via highly interconnected and well-planned train, bus, and taxi services, enjoy uninterrupted electricity, gas, and water supply, and experience greenery throughout the country. Such a world class environment system, however, did not happen by chance - it is the result of the collec ve and con nuous efforts and innova ons of the Developer, Designer, Architect, Builder, Engineer and Policy Maker, in the area of Systems Engineering. Nonetheless, as the economy is becoming more and more ideas-driven and diversified, Design Innova on (DI) has become a cri cal enabler for transforma onal change to solve problems, balance between the various priori es and interests, realise poten als, and create new value, user-centric experiences, crea ve communi es, and new markets [Design Singapore, 2016], [Design Singapore, 2016-2]. Leaders in the public and private sectors are recognising that DI is more than aesthe cs and themes, and good design represents good strategy. Companies, communi es, and economies are using Design Thinking and DI to raise produc vity, unlock new opportuni es for growth, and improve the quality of everyday life [Brown, 2009], [Brown, 2008], [Camburn et al, 2016], [Camburn et al, 2017], [O o et al, 2001] and [Ulrich et al, 2000]. Singapore, as one of the world leaders in DI, is also significantly exploring the possibility of DI contribu ng towards making the world a be er and more sustainable place. For instance, Singapore has appreciated the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development, as shown in Figure 1, which was launched during the Sustainable Development Summit in September 2015, and is exploring how DI can


Figure 1: Seventeen sustainable development goals that are to be achieved over the next 13 years. The figure is taken from the link h p://

help achieve these goals with its limited land and no natural resources [Ministry of Foreign Affairs, 2016].

SYSTEMS ENGINEERING AND DESIGN INNOVATION FOR SUSTAINABILITY The SUTD-MIT Interna onal Design Centre (IDC, idc.sutd., an innova on hub in SUTD, was born out of Singapore’s commitment to DI. IDC’s mission is to drive design research and innova on, in collabora on with a wide spectrum of private and public enterprises. IDC is guided by three core objec ves - advancing design theory and methodology, using design to address key societal challenges, and integra ng design theory and methods with prac ce, and thus be a leading organisa on in the world in Design Science Research and Prac ce.

Figure 2: Sample Design Innova on framework

Within the IDC, design research, prac ce, and pedagogy are guided by a mul -disciplinary DI framework. As a process model, it integrates principles and methods from Design Thinking, Engineering Design, Systems Engineering and Business Processes. The DI model advocated by the IDC consists of four ac on spaces - Discover, Define, Develop, and Deliver - the 4Ds, as shown in Figure 2 and Figure 3. For conceptual convenience, these ac on spaces may be thought of as four phases, as a product, service, system, and/or so ware moves from the first phase, Discover, towards the last phase, Deliver, as the design matures. However, the overall process is highly itera ve, with making, tes ng and learning, and repea ng, integrated throughout. In the first phase, Discover, designers develop empathy with users and other stakeholders iden fying and understanding their aspira ons, needs and concerns. In the second phase, Define, the needs and concerns are

Figure 3: Design Innova on process




reframed, and analogous situa ons are benchmarked to develop a more complete understanding of the problem being solved and the design opportunity. In the third phase, Develop, design strategies and concepts are co-created and screened with respect to feasibility, desirability, and viability. In the final phase, Deliver, selected concepts are prototyped at different fidelity levels and tested with the users, for func onality, usability and risks, to learn and inform subsequent rounds of itera on. Deliver is also the phase where product-service systems are engineered, robustness is infused, produc on and implementa on are developed, and sustainability is assured. The DI framework u lises divergent and convergent thinking throughout all four Ds. The DI framework makes the DI process pivot around the users and stakeholders, making them central, and thus increasing the chance of a design being adopted, pushing the innova on boundaries, and being able to fulfil the needs of the users and stakeholders to the greatest degree. DI facilitates the discovery of insights, latent needs, preference and behaviours of users not known before, across perhaps a full design ecosystem. At the heart of this user-centred approach are a number of key principles, such as Crea vity Throughout; Empathy for All; Expressive Collabora on; Embracing Open Resources; Adap ve Pathways; Curiosity for Context; Celebra ng both Quan ta ve and Qualita ve; Make Test Learn Repeat; Free Space for Blue Skies; Pride in Art, Art in Cra , Cra in Pride; Decompose, Transform, Integrate; Also Can; and Blend Big and Small [Camburn et al, 2017], [Fu et al, 2016]. The DI framework, with integrated principles, is general and is thus useful for design of products (hardware or so ware), services, and systems, such as energy, healthcare, water, and transporta on. As such, design opportuni es in areas of energy management such as smart energy and sustainable water usage (reduc on of water consump on) are prime candidates for applica on of the DI framework, as users are main drivers of energy usage. There are many ques ons and issues related to these design opportuni es. For example, how might we reduce energy consump on in residen al cooling while maintaining, or even improving, thermal comfort of residents?

United States of America, 70% of total annual electricity consump on is meant for buildings [Wu et al, 2016], whereas in Singapore it is 48% [Energy Market Authority, 2015]. Forty percent of the energy consump on by buildings is due to ACs [Wu et al, 2016]. Hence, intelligent management of ACs can significantly benefit the energy sector of Singapore.

INNOVATIONS IN AC MANAGEMENT FOR RESIDENTIAL BUILDINGS For energy innova ons in private spaces, we should first focus on managing the ACs of residen al apartment buildings, with an objec ve to save electricity consump on by the ACs’ compressors but without affec ng the thermal comfort of the building occupants. In this context, we primarily ran this study at a residen al testbed in Singapore to demonstrate energy and related cost savings by controlling the set point temperature of the par cipants’ compressors.

Testbed set up To demonstrate the innova ons in AC management, we set up the testbed at 20 apartment units of a residen al building at SUTD. Each unit was either a one-bedroom, a two-bedroom or a three-bedroom apartment. In each unit, the ACs within the bedrooms were connected to one compressor, whereas the AC of the living room was connected to a second one. Overall, there were 68 ACs within the testbed, which we connected to a total of 36 compressors. An overview of the testbed set up in a three-bedroom apartment unit is shown in Figure 4. All the ACs in the testbed were supplied and installed by Panasonic. They were specially customised for the experiment. As such, we were able to control the thermostat within each AC for both on/off and set point temperature control from a remote central control server. For this par cular experiment, however, we controlled the temperature set point of only par cipant ACs, to manage the power consump on of the respec ve compressors. The power measuring unit inside each

INNOVATION IN SMART ENERGY MANAGEMENT In this sec on, we briefly discuss some innova ve approaches that SUTD and the IDC have explored for smartly managing the energy usage of both private and shared spaces of buildings and spaces in Singapore [Hassan et al, 2013], [Liu et al, 2014], [Tushar et al, 2015], [Hassan et al, 2015], [Huang et al, 2015], [Tushar et al, 2016], [Tushar et al, 2016-1], [Viswanath et al, 2016], [Withanage et al, 2016]. As an example, we focus on the innova ons in developing techniques and policies to manage air-condi oners’ (ACs) energy consump on and cost in buildings. This example is selected, due to the fact that AC systems are one of the major consumers of electricity and have significant impact on overall electricity usage in homes and shared spaces. For example, in the 38


Figure 4: Demonstra on of the set up of the testbed in a three-bedroom apartment unit at SUTD


compressor measured the consump on of electricity by the respec ve compressor and transmi ed the data to the central server. The data on room temperature, AC’s temperature set point, and electricity consump on were monitored and sent to the server every 30 seconds. Each apartment within the testbed was also equipped with a smart meter to measure the total electricity consump on of the overall unit. The data from the smart meter, which was sampled at a rate of 100 per second, was also stored and monitored in real- me from the control server.

Management technique To manage the power consump on of ACs within each apartment unit, we adopted a data-driven approach to capture the diverse preferences, room type, and energy usage behaviour of different types of users. The algorithm was centralised and executed from a remote server to change the temperature set point of the ACs within the par cipants’ apartments. During the experiment, we determined the steady-state par cipant compressors and controlled the temperature set point of the ACs which were connected to those compressors only. No control was performed on compressors that were not in steady-state, as it could be detrimental for the power consump on, ie increase the power consump on even more, according to our observa on. The defini on of steady-state can be found in [Li et al, 2017]. We divided the en re experiment dura on into mul ple me slots where we alternately controlled and released control of the ACs’ set point. The dura on of each me slot was varied across the range from 20 minutes to 30 minutes. The choice of this range of dura on was considered, based on our observa on that it took around 20 minutes to 30 minutes for the room temperature to reach another new value if there was a change in the set point of the user’s AC. Nonetheless, the dura on can be different for different cases, according to weather condi on, room type, users’ sensi vity, and me of the experiment. During the control period, essen ally, we increased the user-defined set point to a higher temperature from the remote server. At the end of each control period, we released the control and set the AC’s set point back to the user’s original set point. The algorithm to set and reset the temperature set point was executed every 30 seconds. However, we ceased the control of the set point, even during the control period, if the communica on was lost or/and the power consump on of the compressor was beyond a predefined range.

Demonstra on of reduc on in energy consump on During the experiment, we were able to control the temperature set point of the ACs only in the apartment units of selected par cipants who agreed to par cipate, and hence gave the research team the access to control their ACs remotely. In par cular, we controlled the temperature set point of 14 ACs that were connected to eight compressors in the testbed, for the en re dura on of the experiment. However, even with controlling the power consump on of eight compressors, significant poten al for saving electricity consump on was observed.

In Figure 5, we show how much energy can be saved by adop ng our designed approach, compared to the case without control. To observe this phenomenon, we chose two days, which were typically iden cal to one another in terms of the thermal comfort experienced by the respec ve occupants of the apartment. In both days, the occupants set the same temperature set point of the AC, and therefore it is reasonable to assume that the occupants experienced the same level of thermal comfort due to the room temperature, on both days. We conducted the experiment on 21 Dec 2015 and 26 Dec 2015, with the temperature set point being manipulated only on 21 Dec 2015.

Figure 5: Comparison of power consump on by an AC system with and without the designed AC management

Now, according to this figure, the power consump on by the compressor on the day without control was much higher than the day with control. For example, consider the me dura on from 16.00 to 6.00. According to the figure, the average power consump on per hour by the compressor was 1.78 kW and 1.2 kW on days without and with control, respec vely Therefore, the total power consump on for the considered 14 hours were 25.03 kW and 16.8 kW, respec vely, for the days without and with temperature set point control. Thus, for the considered dura on of this par cular experiment, the proposed scheme showed a total power savings of around 8 kW with the proposed management mechanism, which is clearly a considerable benefit in terms of energy savings (and related costs). Now, considering the fact that the main source of electricity in Singapore is natural gas, such savings in electricity consump on can also translate into an average reduc on in CO2 produc on of about 4.4 kg for the considered 14 hours. Natural gas has a carbon footprint of 0.55 kg/kWh (Source: h ps:// tools/faqs/faq.cfm?id=74&t=11) However, such savings are con ngent on the rate of interrup on that we can possibly perform on the AC. In this context, we ran experiments to understand what THE SINGAPORE ENGINEER March 2017



percentage of total load, which is consumed by the compressors, can successfully be saved by following the proposed technique. The results are shown in Figure 6.

Figure 6: Illustra on of the successful rate of interrup on of the par cipants’ AC system in order to save electricity consump on

In Figure 6, we show how the interrup on of different percentages of total load consumed by the consumers can contribute to the total savings (or, interrup ble load). In the figure, each triangle and dot represents the amount of load that can be interrupted, in the day and at night, respec vely, without affec ng users’ comfort level, from the total load (total consumed load refers to the total load consumed by the compressors without any control), as we iden fied during the experiment. According to the figure: 1) The best that we can achieve, according to this par cular experiment, is around 80% interrup on of the total load consumed by the households. 2) As the amount of power that is consumed by the users increases, it is possible to offer more interrup ble load to the market for the same percentage of interrup on. 3) For the same amount of consumable load, the more the percentage of interrup on we can make, the more load we can put into the market for demand response. 4) Finally, based on the experiment, the interrup on was mostly around 50% of total load consumed by the par cipant compressors.

INNOVATION IN AC MANAGEMENT IN SHARED SPACES AC systems in shared spaces, where most occupants perform mee ngs and other ac vi es, have a significant impact on the overall energy usage of commercial buildings. However, the diversity of users’ preferences on the temperature set-point makes it difficult to fix a par cular temperature set-point for the AC, based on user preferences. As a consequence, development of policies to fix the temperature set point of shared space ACs, considering occupants’ preferences, 40


is s ll in its infancy. In this context, SUTD has implemented an AC management mechanism for shared spaces, and implemented a policy, by considering a mee ng room within SUTD as a case study. In this sec on, we first provide an overview of a policy that we implemented to manage the temperature se ng of the AC within the selected mee ng room in SUTD. In the designed policy, on the one hand, each user of the mee ng room can provide his/her preference regarding the temperature set-point, and is compensated for the discomfort experienced, if the set-point is not fixed according to the given preference. On the other hand, users who enjoy the thermal comfort compensate the other users of the room. Thus, the policy enables the users to be aware and accountable for the payment for the energy consump on of the office space they are sharing, and at the same me, ensures that the users are sa sfied either via thermal comfort or through the provision of virtual monetary incen ves (such as virtual company money [Kalochris anakis et al, 2013]). We also show that the developed policy is also beneficial for building managers in terms of reducing the cost of energy.

Backend of policy We developed a generalised version of the standard Arrow-d’Aspremont-Gerard-Varet (AGV) mechanism [Wang et al, 2017] that we use in this policy, to capture the diverse requirements of the individuals within the mee ng room. The benefit to an occupant is defined as the difference between the thermal comfort (or, discomfort) that the occupant feels from the temperature set-point in the room and the payment that he/she needs to make (or receive) to keep that temperature. The mechanism provides a solu on that can find the trade-off between users’ thermal comfort and energy cost. It is shown that each individual in the mee ng room received a fair netbenefit, either through thermal comfort or through payment for the discomfort. The mechanism and its related proper es have been detailed [Wang et al, 2017]. [Wang et al, 2017] also shows that the mechanism has a variety of desirable proper es including incen ve compa bility, efficiency, fairness, and a balanced budget. Thus, the designed policy ensures that all users will disclose their true preferences while submi ng their choices for the temperature set point in the room, as a result of the incen ve compa bility property. Furthermore, since the mechanism is efficient, it ensures that the total benefit to all the occupants of the room will be maximum and that no occupant would feel inferior in terms of receiving the benefits according to the policy. Now, given this background, the main policies to fix the temperature set point in a mee ng room can be summarised as follows.

Summary of policy According to this policy: • Each occupant in the shared space is allowed to submit his/her preference of the AC’s temperature set point to the building management system (eg via his/her smart phone and using an interface like that shown in Figure 7).


• However, the building management system would modify the temperature set point of the AC at par cular me intervals, to trade-off between occupants’ thermal preferences and the energy cost. • A er each modifica on of the temperature set point, the building management system will debit or credit the virtual account of each occupant with the company’s e-currency, based on his/her submi ed preference and the actual set point of the AC. • If any occupant forgets or decides not to submit any preference on the AC’s set point, the building management would submit a preference on his/her behalf, based on the historical profiles stored within the system. It must be noted that the payment of e-currency to or from the occupants’ virtual accounts will be conducted only for the devia on from a reference set point for the AC. • The building management will pay for the energy consumed by the AC system for the reference temperature, which would be chosen by the building management based on the regula on of that territory. The details of the policy can be found in [Tushar et al, 2017].

AC was changed from 22° C to 26° C, with an increment of 1° C. During this period of me, each par cipant was allowed to perform his/her normal ac vi es. This phase was conducted to iden fy the normal preference pa erns of the par cipants at different room temperatures. • In the second phase, we again considered the collec on of preferences from the par cipants. However, this me, we applied the designed policy, and made payments to/from the par cipants’ virtual accounts, based on the policy. To es mate the energy consump on by the AC system in the mee ng room, every half an hour, we used a building simula on program, EnergyPlus. Essen ally, we collected the real- me weather data from an onsite weather sta on, every 30 minutes during the experiment and then ran the EnergyPlus (h p:// gov/buildings/energyplus/) module to calculate the half-hour load for each of the possible outcomes at the current temperature. The load was converted to electricity consump on through a constant coefficient of performance (COP). In Figure 8, we show a graphical representa on of the model used for es ma ng electricity consump on during the experiment.

Demonstra on of effec veness of policy

Figure 7: Example of a web interface that can poten ally be used for taking users’ preferences on the temperature set-point

Conduc ng an experiment to verify To show the effec veness of the proposed policy, we recruited 30 par cipants and divided them into six groups to par cipate in an experiment at SUTD. All the par cipants were over 21 years old and capable of repor ng their preferences on the temperature set point to the building management system and received the net benefits. For each group of par cipants, we conducted the experiment by following the steps, as listed below. • We divided the en re experiment into two phases, where each phase of the experiment was conducted for 150 minutes. • In the first phase of the experiment, each par cipant was asked to report his/her preference of AC set point in every 30 minute period, whereas the set point of the

We then demonstrated how the proposed policy is beneficial for both the building manager and the shared space occupants, in terms of reducing electricity cost and obtaining net benefit, respec vely. The results are based on the data obtained from the conducted experiment. To this end, Table 1 shows the building manager the cost of electricity consumed by all six groups, during the experiment periods. According to this table, by adopting the proposed policy, the cost to the building manager is always lower, compared to the scheme with a fixed set point, for all six experiment sessions. This is due to the fact that during implementation of the policy, the temperature was usually set at a value higher than the (conservatively low) fixed set point. As a consequence, energy saving is achieved when the AC works in the cooling mode. In the table, the demonstrated energy costs are estimated using the EnergyPlus module. Interestingly, the energy consumption for the fixed set point also varies across different groups. In fact, the experiments with different groups were run at different times. As a result, the electricity consumption was largely affected by different weather conditions, and hence showed different costs for different experiment sessions. In Figure 9, we show the net benefit, ie the aggregated thermal comfort, in terms of dollars, obtained by each group of par cipants during the experiment. As can be seen from the figure, the net benefits to the par cipants are higher under the proposed policy, compared to the fixed temperature set point scheme. The interpreta on of the reason behind this difference is very straigh orward. In a fixed temperature set point, no monetary benefit is provided to the occupants who were uncomfortable with the temperature. THE SINGAPORE ENGINEER March 2017



Figure 8: Illustra on of the EnergyPlus module that was used to es mate the outcomes at the current temperature

However, in the proposed policy, we quan fied the thermal comfort by monetary incen ves and design incen ve schemes that would increase the net benefit to the par cipants, if their preference is not selected as the AC’s temperature set point. As a consequence, the net benefit to the par cipants is always higher when the proposed policy is implemented.


ACKNOWLEDGEMENT The case studies demonstrated in this ar cle were conducted as elements of a smart energy innova on project which was supported by the Singapore grants NRF2012EWT-EIRP002-045 and NRF2015ENCGBICRD001-028, and in part by the SUTD-MIT Interna onal Design Centre (IDC, Any findings, conclusions, or opinions expressed in this document are those of the authors and do not necessarily reflect the views of the sponsors. 42


Table 1: Demonstra on of the cost to the building manager during the experiments, on establishment of the proposed policy. The cost is compared with the case when the temperature of the mee ng room was set at a fixed value.

Participated group in the experiment 1.4

GROUP 4 Increment: 0.8


Aggregate thermal comfort ($)

DI is a cri cal framework for individuals, teams, organisa ons and communi es to advance and embed the love of our ci es and urban environments. In this ar cle, we have provided an overview of how DI helps Singapore grow into a smart, crea ve, and cosmopolitan city, focusing on resident and user experiences. In this discussion, emphasis is given to the energy sector, by demonstra ng some key design innova ons made by SUTD and the SUTD-MIT Interna onal Design Centre (IDC) in managing the AC loads of the residen al sector in Singapore, which is one of the biggest energy consumers. It is shown that it is possible to manage the AC loads intelligently in both private and shared spaces of a building, to reduce the energy consump on, wastage, cost, and subsequently improve the environmental sustainability. While the discussion in this ar cle is limited to energy management, similar techniques and approaches are also equally applicable, and, with suitable adapta on, can be applied to manage waste, water and related systems and systemic problems and opportuni es.


GROUP 1 Increment: 0.6

GROUP 3 Increment: 1.0 GROUP 5 Increment: 1.0

GROUP 2 Increment: 0.8


GROUP 6 Increment: 0.6



0.8 0.4


1.0 0.8






-0.2 -0.2

Proposed policy

Fixed point policy (0.0 for Groups 2, 3 and 6)

Figure 9: Demonstra on of the aggregated thermal comfort (in terms of dollars) experienced by each group under the proposed policy and in the case when the AC’s temperature set point was at a fixed value


REFERENCES Brown T, ‘Change by design: how design thinking transforms organiza ons and inspires innova on’, 2009, New York, NY: HarperCollins Publishers. Brown T, ‘Design Thinking’, Harvard Business Review, June 2008.

Ministry of Foreign Affairs, ‘Sustainable development’, October 2016, [online]: h ps:// interna onal_issues/sustainable_development_and_climate_ change.html, (accessed on 16 February 2017).

Camburn B, Paul Mignone P, Arli R, Venkataraman S, and Wood K L, ‘Design- and Maker-Based Learning: From Known Knowledge to Crea ng New Knowledge’, The Exchange, Ministry of Educa on (MOE), Singapore, Nov 2016, Issue 2, ISSN: 24249254.

Ministry of the Environment and Water Resources, ‘Our home, our environment, our future’, 2015, [online]: h p://www.mewr. (accessed on 16 February 2017).

Camburn B, Auernhammer J, Sng K, Mignone P, Arli R, Perez K B, Huang Z, Basnet S, Blessing L, and Wood K L, ‘Design Innova on: A Study of Impact on Prac ce’, ASME 2017 Interna onal Design Engineering Technical Conferences & Computers and Informa on in Engineering Conference (IDETC/CIE 2017), IDETC2017-68382, Cleveland, Ohio, August 6-9, 2017, in review.

Soon T Y, ‘Sustainable development: Challenges and opportuni es’, Ethos, issue 7, Civil Service College, Singapore January 2010, [online]: h ps:// Knowledge/Ethos/Issue%207%20Jan%202010/Pages/ Sustainable-Development-Challenges-and-Opportuni es.aspx, (accessed on 16 February 2017).

Design Singapore, ‘Why Design’, January 2016, [online]: h ps:// aspx, (accessed on February 16, 2017).

Tushar W, Chai B, Yuen C, Smith D, Wood K L, Yang Z, and Poor H V, ‘Three party energy management with distributed energy resources in smart grid’, IEEE Transac ons on Industrial Electronics, vol 62, no 4, pp 2487-2498, Apr 2015.

Design Singapore, ‘The future of Singapore design - DESIGN 2025’, January, 2016, [online]: h ps://www.designsingapore. org/who_we_are/why_design/Design2025.aspx, (accessed on March 09, 2017) Energy Market Authority, ‘Singapore energy sta s cs 2015’, website, 2015: h ps:// ons and Sta s cs/Publica ons/SES2015 Final website 2mb.pdf. Fu K, Yang M, and Wood K L, ‘Design Principles: Literature Review, Analysis, and Future Direc ons’, ASME Journal of Mechanical Design, Vol 138, No 10, 2016, doi:10.1115/1.4034105. Hassan N, Pasha M A, Yuen C, Huang S, and Wang X, ‘Impact of scheduling flexibility on demand profile flatness and user inconvenience in residen al smart grid’, in MDPI Energies, vol 6, no 2, pp 6608-6635, Dec 2013. Hassan N U, Khalid Y, Yuen C, and Tushar W, ‘Customer engagement plans for peak load reduc on in residen al smart grid’, IEEE Transac ons on Smart Grid, vol 6, no 6, pp 3029-3041, Nov 2015. Huang S, Tushar W, Yuen C, and O o K, ‘Quan fying economic benefits in the ancillary electricity market for smart appliances in Singapore households’, Elsevier Sustainable Energy, Grids and Networks, vol 1, pp 53-62, Mar 2015. Kalochris anakis M, Gramma kakis K, Saldaris M, Demesoukas I, and Tzanodaskalakis G, ‘The concept and design of an open integrated print charging system’, IEEE Systems Journal, vol 7, no 4, pp 692–699, Dec 2013. Li W-T, Gubba S R, Tushar W, Yuen C, Hassan N U, Poor H V, Wood K L and Wen C-K, ‘Data driven electricity management for residen al air condi oning systems: An experimental approach’, IEEE Transac ons on Emerging Topics in Compu ng, 2017 (preprint, doi: 10.1109/TETC.2017.2655362). Liu Y, Yuen C, Huang S, Hassan N U, Wang X and Xie S, ‘Peakto-average ra o constrained demand-side management with consumer’s preference in residen al smart grid’, in IEEE Journal of Selected Topics in Signal Processing, vol 8, no 6, pp 10841097, Nov 2014.

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Tushar W, Yuen C, Li K, Wood K L, Wei Z, and Xiang L, ‘Design of cloud-connected IoT system for smart buildings on energy management’ EAI Endorsed Transac ons on Industrial Networks and Intelligent Systems, vol 16, no 6, pp 1-9, Jan 2016 (Invited paper). Tushar W, Yuen C, Chai B, Huang S, Wood K L, Kerk S G, and Wang Z, ‘Smart grid testbed for demand focused energy management in end user environment’, IEEE Wireless Communica on Magazine, vol 23, no 6, pp 70-80, Dec 2016. Tushar W, Wang T, Lan L, Xu Y, Withanage C, and Yuen C, ‘Policy design for controlling set-point temperature of ACs in shared spaces of buildings’, Energy and Buildings, vol 134, pp 105-114, Jan 2017. Ulrich K T and Eppinger S, ‘Product design and development’, 2000, New York: McGraw-Hill Educa on. Urban Redevelopment Authority, ‘Designing our city Planning for a sustainable Singapore’, 2012, [online]: https:// URA_Designing%20our%20City%20Supplement_July12.pdf (accessed on 16 February 2017). Viswanath S K, Yuen C, Tushar W, Li W-T, Wen C-K, Cheng C and Liu X, ‘System design of internet-of-things for residen al smart grids’, IEEE Wireless Communica on Magazine, vol 23, no 5, pp 90-98, Oct 2016. Wang T, Xu Y, Ahipasaoglu S D, and Courcoube s C, ‘Ex-post maxmin fairness of generalized AGV mechanisms’, IEEE Transac ons on Automa c Control, 2017 (pre-print, doi:10.1109/ TAC.2016.2632424). Withanage C, O o K H, O o K, and Wood K L, ‘Design of sustainable use of appliances: A framework based on user behavior observa ons’, ASME Journal of Mechanical Design, vol 138, no 10, pp 1-12, Aug 2016. Wu Z, Jia Q-S, and Guan X, ‘Op mal control of mul room HVAC system: An event-based approach’, IEEE Transac ons on Control Systems Technology, vol 24, no 2, pp 662-669, Mar 2016.





DELEGATION FROM IRAN Er. Chong and Mr Singh also briefed the Iranians on how Singapore confronted its size and resource limita ons in the course of its transforma on, and gave an overview of the strategic master plans for long-term sustainable development in the areas of transporta on, technology, land-use, water, energy and housing. The group also discussed Singapore’s progress towards its Smart Na on goals. Kick-star ng the mutual exchange of knowledge from the Iranian delega on was Mr Ali Chavoshian, Director of the Regional Centre on Urban Water Management under the auspices of UNESCO.

Immediate Past President Er. Chong Kee Sen, (standing, fi h from le ), Vice President, Infrastructure Cluster Er. Chan Ewe Jin (standing, eighth from le ) and Advisor to LTA Academy Mohinder Singh (standing, tenth from le ) pose for a photo with the Tehran Municipality delega on and other mee ng par cipants.

The deepening friendship between Singapore and Iran has created many opportuni es for both countries to work together and learn from each other. In the spirit of collabora on, IES hosted a delega on from the Tehran Municipality for a mee ng and sharing session on 13 February 2017. The 13-strong delega on met IES Immediate Past President Er. Chong Kee Sen, Advisor to LTA Academy Mohinder Singh, and other representa ves at the IES Green Building @ Bukit Tinggi. Hailing mostly from the municipal office, as well as the Tehran Engineering and Technical Organisa on (TETCO; an advisory body that provides technical and engineering consultancy services to the various agencies that administer Tehran City), the delega on heard from Er. Chong on various aspects of Singapore’s infrastructure development as the country journeyed from Third World to First.



In his presenta on on engineering and infrastructure development in Tehran, he shared that engineering in Tehran is in fact an in-demand career choice, with females making up almost 60 per cent of the total number of students pursuing engineering courses.

The delega on also introduced some of Tehran’s engineering feats, which include iconic structures such as the Milad Tower and the Nature Bridge. At 435 m, Milad Tower is the 6th tallest tower in the world. The head of the tower, a 25,000-ton, 12-storey structure, is the biggest and tallest mul -storey structure amongst all communica on towers in the world.

The Nature Bridge, on the other hand, is the largest pedestrian overpass in Tehran, spanning 270 metres over a large highway and connec ng two public parks. The bridge took 4 years to construct. In a nod towards progressiveness in the Iranian engineering community, the award-winning bridge was designed by a 26-year-old female engineer, Ms Leila Araghian. The mee ng, which enabled both Singapore and Tehran to come together to exchange their experiences in infrastructure development, ended on a posi ve note. Both IES and the Tehran Municipality representa ves expressed their interest for future collabora on and coopera on.





The three winners collected their prizes at IES on 1 March 2017.

In 2015, as part of the IES-SG50 celebra ons to commemorate both the na on’s Golden Jubilee and IES’ 50th birthday, the Engineering Feats @ IES-SG50 compe on was launched. The aim of the compe on was to seek out and recognise the top 50 engineering achievements across the various fields of engineering deemed to have made the greatest economic, infrastructural or societal impact to Singapore since its founding in 1965. A er much delibera on, 113 projects from various agencies, organisa ons and companies were put up for public vo ng in March 2016, with the final 50 projects receiving their accolades from Prime Minister Lee Hsien Loong at the IES Golden Jubilee Gala Dinner on 1 July 2016. A lucky draw was also held for three cash prizes. Congratula ons to Mr Rosli bin Ramli, Mr Li Caihong and Ms Si Jumariah bte Jee Sahak, the three lucky winners who were chosen from more than 65,000 voters to walk away with SGD 500 in cold, hard cash! Stay tuned to this space as we bring you more updates regarding the Engineering Feats in the upcoming months!


IES SPRING FESTIVAL 2017 IES ushered in the Year of the Rooster on the evening of 10 February 2017, holding a sumptuous 9-course dinner at the Auditorium to mark the occasion. In the loud, boisterous style typical of Lunar New Year celebra ons, two lions from the Nam Sang Lion Dance Troupe pranced through the Secretariat office at the Green Building, chasing away evil spirits and ushering in good luck for the year. They then performed the “plucking the green” ceremony at the Auditorium, blessing all members with good fortune in the months ahead. In his opening address, IES President Er. Edwin Khew took the opportunity to give all guests present an overview of the Ins tu on’s plans and ini a ves for 2017.



These include focusing on engineer training and workplace safety, collabora ng even closer with government agencies to iden fy industry trends and improve produc vity, and con nued work on professional recogni on for engineers. Guests were also entertained with mini-games like kam- kam, where they could win small cash prizes or a chance at the TOTO Hongbao Draw. There was also a pipa performance by Ms Ong Shi Qing, a member of the Nanyang Fine Arts Young Talent Group, as well as a flute performance by Community Service Commi ee member Liu Soon Leong. Dispensing with tradi on, a Bingo game was played for the lucky draw prizes, rounding out the evening’s ac vi es.


1 2 7



1 5 2 3 4 5 6 7




It’s the Year of the Rooster, so o we need a mascot for that as well! ll! Cute lion photo game strong. Er. Edwin Khew receiving the auspicious scroll from the lions ‌ and making the opening address right a er. The single most common phrase heard at lou heis: Huat ah! (Prosperity!) Guests beginning to dig in and enjoy the meal. Pipa performer Ms Ong and her family, together with Er. Khew and wife, a er receiving a token of apprecia on for her beau ful performance. Mr Liu in deep concentra on during his performance, never missing a note.




STAYING AHEAD THROUGH ENGINEERING INNOVATION AND ENTREPRENEURIALISM Mr Omar Shahzad, Group CEO, Meinhardt Group Interna onal Limited The current global economic outlook is indeed sluggish. The World Bank expects global growth to hover at 2.7% in 2017, nearly unchanged from 2016 – a year widely regarded as a “post-crisis low”, with “anaemic” levels of investment and weaker global trade. Economic prospects in Asia are weighed down by a slowdown in China, property cooling measures in many parts of the region, rising US interest rates and currency and uncertainty in US geo-economic policies stemming from a newly elected President. Whilst the long-term fundamentals for engineering industry are favourable underpinned by rapid urbanisa on, popula on growth, climate change among other factors which have fuelled unprecedented requirements for infrastructure and smart ci es, the reality of the prevailing slower growth environment and global compe on makes it impera ve for engineering firms to differen ate themselves and become nimbler and adapt to a more cut-throat market environment. At Meinhardt, we pride ourselves with a culture of engineering innova on and entrepreneurialism. This has served us well to adapt to the economic slowdown and structural changes within our industry. Over the years, we have focused on delivering more innova ve and cu ng edge design solu ons that have op mised construc on cost and me for our clients. This has helped us beat our compe on by offering value rather than ght fees. Examples include the various projects along the Marina Bay skyline where our design solu ons had a significant savings of over S$50 million. Since our founding 60 years ago, we have aggressively focused on interna onal expansion. Today, Meinhardt has 45 offices globally set up primarily on the back of organic growth. Whilst geographical diversifica on mi gates cyclical risks in any one or more markets at a me, it takes me and investment before an opera on can be successful in a new country. Pa ence, quick learning abili es and se ng up the right team combina on is the key. We have also made a conscious effort to embrace technology. For example, Meinhardt switched to Building Informa on Modelling (BIM) produc on five years ago in all our key offices, just ahead of Building and Construc on Authority (BCA) direc ve for all design submissions to be submi ed in 3-D. Grants from BCA were helpful in defraying the huge investment cost. Given the s ff compe on from within the industry and rela vely high cost base of Singapore opera ons, it is vital to focus on increasing produc vity and minimising re-work by enhancing QA/QC procedures. We have implemented many policies in this regard including more vigorous training for our young engineering graduates, inves ng in an internal knowledge sharing pla orm and mandatory internal design reviews at cri cal design junctures for all key projects. Going forward, it is clear that investment in infrastructure will drive the construc on spend in Singapore and across many countries globally. Although, private sector par cipa on in infrastructure spending will con nue to increase albeit from a low base, the Government is likely to be the main contributor to develop greenfield projects interna onally. It is vital for engineering companies here to augment their experience, capacity and business and delivery strategy to take be er advantage of the US$8 trillion investment in infrastructure an cipated across Asia over the next decade.

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