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August, 1943 AIRCRAFT ENGINEERIN G 217 doing excellent work within their own strictly limited field but the number of those who had any knowledge of, or interest in, anything Aircraft Engineering outside their own particular sphere of activity was lamentably few and was a very real bar to progress. Devote d to th e Science an d Practice of Aero nautic s and to Allied and Subsidiary A Fundamental Point Branche s of th e Engineerin g Industry We believe that this matter of the breadth of the training to be Editor: Lieut.-Col. W. Lockwood Marsh, O.B.E., F.R.Ae.S., M.S.A.E.,F.I.Ae.S. given is absolutely fundamental; at any regard, in regard to those being nurtured to take leading positions in the technical side of Vol. XV, No . 174 August 1943. the industry. For such men to be immured during their training in the cloistered seclusion of a special aeronautical university would be to condemn them to that limited outlook and littleness of E publish this month an interesting article by MR. T. H. mind which is so greatly to be deplored and should at all costs be DAY ingeniously drawing attention to a striking analogy avoided. SIR MELVILL JONES'S scheme for a central school for between the system of forces acting on an airscrew and on post-graduate aeronautical students is not open to the same objec a direct-acting engine. The diagrams he has prepared certainly tion—though we confess that .we view even this with some doubts, produce strong evidence in proof of this similarity; to which, so both on account of the consideration we are emphasizing here and far as we are aware, attention has not previously been called. also because we are by no means certain that such a centralized There are, of course, comparable cases, such as those between body would be able to attract the best men from all parts of the certain electrical phenomena and mechanical forces, and there are country. We, however, freely admit that for men of the calibre no doubt others. It strikes us as being an interesting exercise to envisaged it has considerable attractions; provided that the field tr y and discover some of these; which might have beneficial effects of subjects covered were sufficiently wide and that students were in leading, in some instances, to simplification. encouraged to take an interest in each other's work and were lectured by visitors from outside at frequent intervals. A Broad Outlook Needed The aspect of this matter which interests us at the moment is Foreign Languages the light it throws on the need for a wide outlook in approaching There are two other preliminary points that should be given full any new problem. Most of our English readers, at any rate, will attention before the details of technical training are discussed. be aware that the ROYAL AERONAUTICAL SOCIETY has recently It is absolutely essential that every student, in nearly all grades, held two meetings to discuss the desirable forms which the future should be encouraged, or compelled, to take up the study of at least education and training of aeronautical engineers should take. one foreign language so that he can later on in his career become These follow on the recent issue by the INSTITUTION OF CIVIL familiar with the work, at any rate in his own special line, of ENGINEERS of "A Memorandum on Engineering Education" and those in other countries. The study of foreign languages has by the INSTITUTE OF PHYSICS of a similar pamphlet entitled " The been greatly—if not entirely—ignored in the curriculum of Education and Training of Physicists". These more specialized technical education, with lamentable results in the inculcation of inquiries synchronize, of course, with a great movement in regard that insularity of outlook for which the English engineer is so often to education in general which has found expression in the issue of criticized. a Government White Paper on the subject and the Report of the The Expression of Ideas Norwood Committee on " Curriculum and Examinations in Second Finally, a special point should be made of educating students ary Schools." to express their thoughts and ideas in good English. The man who The subject of the technical education and training of aeronautical cannot set down his knowledge in a reasonable form of words is engineers is, of course, an immense one, with a bewildering array not only setting up a smoke-screen of obscurity between himself of facets, to which this editorial page could be devoted for months and others but is too often hiding a lack of clarity in his own mind. to come. We are not proposing to embark on it now, though we There is no better way of setting into order and tidying up one's propose to do so in the near future when the Report of the ROYAL own knowledge than by putting it down on paper in sound English AERONAUTICAL SOCIETY'S meetings is available. What we wish to prose. It is an excellent mental exercise in itself and has a won do this month is to call attention to one primary aspect, which we derful effect in clearing away the weeds of "woolly" thought. believe to be of fundamental importance. A Calamitous Proposal QUALITY CONTROL A truly horrifying suggestion was referred to by DR. ROXBEE We desire to bring to the special notice of readers the announce COX in his opening remarks as Chairman of the R.A.S. meeting— ment in our " Classified Advertisement " column on p. 246 of this no less than the formation of an Aeronautical University in which issue that MR. H. RISSIK'S two series of articles on " Quality young men desiring to enter the aeronautical engineering profession Control in Production Engineering " and " Sampling Inspection should, apparently, be segregated on leaving school. We cannot and Quality Determination " are now available as a separate pam imagine anything more calamitous or any step better calculated phlet. This reprint constitutes much the most complete thesis on to destroy the lead in aeroplane design which Great Britain at. the subject that has yet appeared. The use of statistical charts present holds. One of the greatest modern English thinkers, for controlling the quality of products during manufacture—as MR. HERBERT REED, some years ago wrote, " I t has been a opposed to the throwing out of rejects by the inspection department common saying since Mr. Pope first wrote it tha t a little knowledge after completion—is a comparatively new technique which is rapidly (sic) is a dangerous thing. But much more dangerous is the gaining increased recognition. The applications of the method are knowledge which, though not little, is limited." almost infinite in their variety and there are comparatively few production processes in which its intelligent use would not prove The Effect of Limitation beneficial. We called attention in the April issue of AIRCRAFT ENGINEERING to some instances where, though not perhaps obvious, We well remember once being told by a well-known figure in the the method could with advantage be introduced, but these are full}' aeronautical world, who was at that time concerned with the direc dealt with by MR. RISSIK himself. He explains both what the tion of the activities of research workers in many fields, thatth e great system is and what it is not, and we have no hesitation in recom obstacle he met with was the lack of men of sufficiently wide train mending the reprint to all those who desire to be adequately ing and vision to be able to take a broad view of any research informed on it. problem. There were plenty of men, he said, who were capable of
Aircraft Engineering and Aerospace Technology – Emerald Publishing
Published: Aug 1, 1943
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