Design Engineering Glossary

Design Engineering Glossary

  • 3D Modelling- Is the use of software to create the representation of a three-dimensional model of an object.
  • 3D Printing- This is the process of where a material has joined under computer control to create a 3D item. Materials are usually added together and built up layer by layer, which is also known as additive manufacturing.
  • Additive Layer Manufacturing- The process of joining materials to make objects from 3D model data, this joining of materials is made from adding layer after layer.
  • As-Built- This refers to how an object appears once it has finished being produced/manufactured. 
  • As-Designed- This refers to how an object was first designed, this includes certain measurements, colours, dimensions, etc. and it is usually in a CAD format.
  • CAD- Stands for Computer Aided Design and is a type of software used to create precise drawings or technical illustrations. It can also be used to form 2D drawings or 3D models.
  • Class A Surfacing- Refers to those surfaces which are visible in a product. This service is primarily used in the automotive environment and increasingly in consumer goods. It is a requirement where aesthetics have a significant contribution. E.g. the exterior of automobiles is deemed Class ‘A’. 
  • Composites- Are materials made by combining two or more elements that work together stronger, more efficiently or more durable than if they were used on their own.
  • Computational Fluid Dynamics- Is a simulation technique that identifies the interaction of liquids and gases with surfaces defined by boundary conditions. It allows the fluid flow around or through any product to be analysed in detail. It allows the fluid mass flow, velocity, density, temperature, pressure, concentration or any fluid flow property to be calculated throughout a CAD model.
  • Computer-aided Manufacturing- Is the use of computer software to aid the manufacturing process as it creates a faster production with more consistency.
  • CT Scanning- Stands for computed tomography and is a process which uses x-ray equipment to inspect the internal and external features of a component and produce 3D representations of the component. This process is non-destructive.
  • Digital Archiving- This is a key use of technology that ensures priceless items are captured through 3D scanning and then digitised and archived. This means that if anything happened to the item, there is digital data available to fall back on if you needed to reproduce the item.
  • Finite Element Analysis (FEA)- Is a simulation technique that allows the design of a product or piece of equipment to be analysed. Stress, vibration and heat transfer analyses are commonly carried out, but many other physical analyses can be conducted.
  • Inspection- Through CT scanning and 3D scanning we can undertake quality inspection by comparing the part being scanned against its ‘as designed’ drawings/model. We can also identify ‘tolerance creep’ and act as a quality control audit process.
  • Kinematics- Is the study of the motion of objects without regard to forces that cause it. Kinematics is a simulation showing where all of the parts in an assembly line are at a certain time as it goes through a cycle.
  • Non-destructive testing- This is the process of inspecting, testing or scanning parts, components, equipment, etc without damaging it. In other words, once the process has been completed the item can continue being used as it was before the inspection, etc.
  • Rapid Oil Analysis Monitor (ROAM)- This is a portable oil testing kit and enables accurate condition sample tests of any oil anywhere on an item in seconds. It is an invaluable tool that helps to ensure your equipment operates reliably and efficiently.
  • Rapid Prototyping- It is used to create 3D products and typically created using additive manufacturing processes, such as 3D printing which involves building up a product layer by layer.
  • Reverse Engineering- This is the process of collecting data from an item, component, piece of equipment, etc through analysing its function and structure. For example, if there is no original documentation of the item available, we can use reverse engineering to produce the designs and this documentation can then be archived.
  • Scanning- This is a process that involves measuring an item and capturing its data, this data forms a point cloud which is then transferred into CAD.
  • Siemens NX- This is a type of software we use that enables us to design, simulate and manufacture products faster in an integrated product development environment.
  • Wind Tunnel Testing- This is where we can test scaled models or full models to obtain data that is critical for our clients to assess the aerodynamic performance to optimise their vehicle, model or equipment.




The team have provided solutions for UAV composite propellers, the F-35 (Joint Strike Fighter) project, and reverse engineering projects, with our blue light scanning service.

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