Books of interest to mechanical engineering applicants

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Spen
Posts: 70
Joined: Sat Sep 12, 2009 8:28 pm UTC

Books of interest to mechanical engineering applicants

Postby Spen » Tue Dec 14, 2010 7:17 pm UTC

Right, essentially I've applied to do Mechanical Engineering and I'm a little unsure of what to read that'll help with the course/ when I go and do an industrial placement next year:
I'm doing A-Level maths(MEI) and I've got a copy of Introducing Mechanics by Brian Jefferson and Tony Beadsworth and Introducing Pure Mathematics by unknown authors (textbook is currently at school), to accompany this I have the MEI textbooks published by Hodder Murray all of which get used in lessons and for homeworks as well as reference texts.
Modern engineering Mathematics by Glyn James is currently sat on my desk waiting to be read over the christmas holidays, the school library seems to have a pile of stuff on Isambard Kingdom Brunel as well which I might start to read if that would be likely to help. I've also read a fairly large chunk of a materials engineering textbook which was talking about the cooling processes and how crystals form etc but didn't go into any of the mathematics behind what was going on.
So I'd like to know what would be useful reading to give me a more firm basis to start off from when I go to university, I'm doing A-level Physics, Maths and Design and Technology and did AS Chemistry so I have knowledge of the mechanics which will be involved, can understand technical drawing skills and I also understand (some) chemical processes if any specific prior knowledge is required.
So, what would be good to put on my reading list for the next year and a half before I hopefully go to Loughborough?
p.s. I had a search for a thread similar to this already but only found one on maths books specifically.
Thanks in advance
Spen

gorcee
Posts: 1501
Joined: Sun Jul 13, 2008 3:14 am UTC

Re: Books of interest to mechanical engineering applicants

Postby gorcee » Tue Dec 14, 2010 7:38 pm UTC

Your post is somewhat unclear. But, from what I read, this is what I have inferred:

You are a student looking to attend university next year for Mechanical Engineering. Presumably, it will be your first or second year in university, and you want to study some background material prior to commencing your studies. I assume that you're in the UK, but it doesn't really matter. Correct me if I'm wrong.

Mechanical Engineering is a broad field, and professional mechanical engineers can spend an entire career doing research in one specific sub-field of M.E. and know next to nothing about some other subfield of M.E. However, most university courses begin by teaching things that every engineer, mechanical or otherwise, should know. This is where you should focus.

You'll need to know engineering Statics (note: not statistics, though you should eventually know that, too). I think it's Hibbard who wrote a book called Engineering Mechanics: Statics. You'll also want to familiarize yourself with vector mechanics and basic linear algebra (ie, how to solve large systems of linear equations, etc). You'll want to know Calculus, and you should be comfortable working with multivariable calculus. These should be good places to start.

Spen
Posts: 70
Joined: Sat Sep 12, 2009 8:28 pm UTC

Re: Books of interest to mechanical engineering applicants

Postby Spen » Tue Dec 14, 2010 8:49 pm UTC

You were bang on the money with your inferences apart from that I'll be going the year after next as I'm doing a year in industry next year. Thanks for the reccomendation, I'll try and pick up a couple of books on those this weekend.
Thanks
Spen

gorcee
Posts: 1501
Joined: Sun Jul 13, 2008 3:14 am UTC

Re: Books of interest to mechanical engineering applicants

Postby gorcee » Tue Dec 14, 2010 9:05 pm UTC

Since I mentioned it in another thread in the Math forums, also check out Strang's Introduction to Linear Algebra.

Game_boy
Posts: 1314
Joined: Tue Mar 04, 2008 7:33 pm UTC

Re: Books of interest to mechanical engineering applicants

Postby Game_boy » Tue Dec 14, 2010 9:14 pm UTC

Feynman Lectures? Most of the content in a Mech Eng degree is Physics (mechanics and thermodynamics specifically).

What AS grades did you get? Also, was Loughborough your first choice? - with the A*AA they want you could have applied anywhere.
The Reaper wrote:Evolution is a really really really long run-on sentence.

Spen
Posts: 70
Joined: Sat Sep 12, 2009 8:28 pm UTC

Re: Books of interest to mechanical engineering applicants

Postby Spen » Wed Dec 15, 2010 6:57 am UTC

Thanks for the recommendation Gorcee.
Game_Boy, I'd only heard of Feynman in relation to particle physics and those diagrams which I absolutely failed to remember apart from the 24 hour period surrounding the AS physics exam so thanks for showing me a possible route to not disliking him so strongly!
I got ABBC (DT, Physics, Chemistry, Maths in that order) for AS with predicted grades of ABC so I applied for the BEng at Loughborough which is only after ABB, when I put in the application Loughborough was second choice to Southampton but as of the UCAS visit day Loughborough's now my first choice, rather usefully since Southampton rejected my application, I'll hopefully get bumped up to the MEng once I get there. The last 3 results were a lot lower than I wanted as at the time I was having problems with PTSD and trying to help a friend who was having quite serious problems herself (think misdiagnosed and therefore on the wrong medication), this reading's partly to ensure that I can catch up and make sure that my understanding of last year's stuff is absolutely rock solid as I've taken a look at the Best Maths course that Loughborough University runs for Year In Industry students and while I'd like to do it I'd like to make sure I'm absolutely certain that I understand the AS and A2 stuff.
P.S. Of course mech eng has a lot of physics in it, it's shoehorned itself into the fields arranged by purity strip right between physics and maths (maybe not shoehorned due to the massive gulf).
http://xkcd.com/435/


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