How to Start a Career in Mechanical Engineering
While you can earn a college degree in “General Engineering,” the vast majority (about 98%) of all engineering bachelor’s degrees are awarded in a specific field (discipline) of engineering. Thus, it is important to have a specific engineering discipline(s) in mind when evaluating schools (and many schools will ask (or require) that you specify a particular discipline when you apply for admissions, although there is usually some flexibility granted students to transfer from one discipline to another, typically after the first (freshman) year of studies).
Based on the number of bachelor’s degrees awarded annually, the engineering majors offered at colleges and universities can be roughly divided into one of four size-based categories:
- The “Big Four” Disciplines: Civil, Computer, Electrical, and Mechanical Engineering, which together collectively account for approximately two-thirds (67%) of all engineering bachelor’s degrees awarded annually.
- The “Medium Four” Disciplines: Aerospace, Biomedical, Chemical, and Industrial/Manufacturing Engineering, which collectively account for approximately 20% of all engineering bachelor’s degrees awarded annually.
- The “Smaller Ten” Disciplines: Agricultural, Architectural, Engineering Management, Engineering Physics/Engineering Science, Environmental, General Engineering Studies, Materials, Mining, Nuclear, and Petroleum Engineering, which collectively account for less than 10% of all engineering bachelor’s degrees awarded annually.
- The Specialty Disciplines: A variety of specialty disciplines offered (such as Ocean Engineering) that collectively account for less than 5% of all engineering bachelor’s degrees awarded annually.
This article talks about Mechanical Engineering, one of the big four disciplines.
Mechanical Engineering is one of the oldest branches of engineering. Being oldest branch it is also referred as mother of all branches. The most interesting aspect of this branch is that it is application based field of study.
Traditionally, mechanical engineers used to deal with concepts such as mechanics, thermodynamics, robotics, kinematics, structural analysis, fluid mechanics and many others. But now time has changed apart from conventional roles many new areas in mechanical engineering has developed such as nanotechnology, development of composite materials, biomedical applications, environmental conservation, etc.
Courses for Mechanical Engineering:
- Diploma Course
Eligibility Criteria: Class 10
Duration: 3 years
- BTech/BE Course
Eligibility Criteria: 10+2 with PCM (Physics, Chemistry and Mathematics)
Duration: 4 years
- ME/MTech Course
Eligibility Criteria: BTech/BE Course
Duration: 2 years
To enhance one's skill it is advisable that one should pursue an M.Tech course from recognized institutes of the country. MTech is specialisation based course. Primary areas of specialisation in Mechanical Engineering are summed below:
Primary Areas of Specialization:
1. Solid Mechanics (analyzing the behavior of solid bodies subjected to external loads, stress, and/or vibrations and using that information in the design and manufacture/construction of such bodies)
2. Fluid Mechanics (analyzing the behavior of liquids and gases and using that knowledge in the design and development of machinery and systems that can and/or do influence that behavior – pumps, fans, turbines, piping systems, etc.)
3. Thermodynamics (analyzing the conversion one form of energy into another and using that knowledge to design and develop energy conversion devices and systems – power plants, engines, Heating, Ventilation, and Air Conditioning (HVAC) systems, etc.)