Technical highlights

28 November 2013
IET Communications team
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News from the IET’s knowledge team.

Sharing and advancing essential engineering intelligence is a central part of the IET’s purpose. Below is an update on some of the recent highlights in this area.



The Journal of Engineering (JoE), the IET’s broad, online-only, open access journal, was launched in April 2013. The aim of JoE is to make essential engineering research freely available to the worldwide engineering community, online. It is already attracting a broad spectrum of papers including a highly topical paper on ‘contactless payment cards’ from the University of Surrey. Widespread media coverage, including a story from the BBC, resulted in over 1,000 full text downloads of the article.

Paul Krause, professor of software engineering at the University of Surrey, said: “Open access is vitally important in order to ensure that the results of publicly funded research are made available to all. It is particularly important for the stimulation of innovation in engineering where new enterprises may not have the financial resources to pay for a range of journal subscriptions. The IET has taken a very significant initiative in establishing a high quality open access journal that covers all aspects of engineering in one resource.”


Another recent highlight has been the publication of the IET’s Electrical Safety Management Code of Practice. There are many technical publications that offer guidance on certain aspects of electrical safety, but not in a way that provides a comprehensive process for managing it. This publication is applicable to the buildings, facilities, equipment and environments associated with a wide range of organisations, irrespective of size, including the industrial, commercial and the public sectors.

Malcolm Sarstedt, chairman of the IET Standards Committee developing the code and Unilever’s group process safety manager, said: “This new Code of Practice is eminently suitable for large and small firms and will be very useful for hard-pressed managers who do not have time to research what to do, and who would be reassured to comply with a product from an influential and authoritative source such as the IET."



The IET’s five sectors regularly publish content on key industry topics relevant to engineering in the 21st Century, to encourage engagement and interaction amongst the international engineering community. The publications are aimed at a wide audience within each sector, including industry and government.

Two case studies were recently published to coincide with the Transport Sector’s joint event with HS2 Ltd and Parsons Brinckerhoff. These were HS2: High Speed Cooling and California High-Speed Rail: Passenger Experience Planning.

The Design and Production Sector has also published three new sector insights, each authored by an IET volunteer expert: 3D Printing: A Differentiation Engine, Sustainable Manufacturing: starting the journey, and Food Security: how engineering can help.  

The Built Environment Sector, meanwhile, has published a special interest publication entitled Infrastructure Risk and Resilience: Transportation.



In October, the IET hosted a two-day event on smart energy, called Power in Unity: A Whole System Approach. Senior figures from EDF and Scottish & Southern Energy (SSE) joined representatives from UK Power Networks, DECC and National Grid, among others, to speak at the event in London. Power in Unity explored the smart energy ecosystem, focusing on smart grids, energy storage, smart metering and power quality.

The IET Young Professionals’ Event also took place in London in October, this year focussing on 3D printing. Professor Richard Hague, director of the EPSRC Centre for Additive Manufacturing, gave the lecture, addressing 3D printing’s cost effectiveness, environmental impact and the potential for new business models. You can watch the lecture on IET.tv.


New E&T services

E&T magazine has launched a Webinar and White Paper programme, designed to provide practising engineers with a range of free-to-view technical content. The webinars are also available to view on-demand, which means that engineers can tap into these informative sessions as and when required.  

So far this year, thousands of IET members have already taken advantage of these valuable new E&T services – see for yourself on the E&T website.

Knowledge Packs

The IET has announced a new IET member benefit in the form of Knowledge Packs, which will allow individuals access to high quality, bite-sized content from the IET Digital Library at an article and chapter level, in order to give them the essential engineering intelligence they need, when they need it.

The Knowledge Packs have been developed with the close involvement of IET members, as highlighted in this ‘one team’ working case study. Members will be able to start using their Knowledge Packs in early 2014 – watch this space!