Category Archives: Miscellaneous

Weaving harnesses to clothes pegs, smart cards to plaster dowels

Back in my old engineering days I spent a lot of time in factories – usually having a guided tour. Even though I was there to sell something, the factory manager would invariably be very proud of his or her production facility and enjoy showing someone around. I enjoy learning about machines so was a […]

The world of ultra-sound machines

You learn something new every day in my line of work and today was no exception. We’re all no doubt familiar with ultrasound machines (no jokes about Mancunians, please!) as they’re a common feature in any modern hospital, used primarily as a very quick way to look inside the human body in real-time. The potential […]

The London floods of 2000

My biggest experience with industrial dehumidifiers was in late 2000 when London was hit by very heavy rain that caused a lot of very serious flooding across many parts of the capital. At the time, according to the report by the Greater London Assembly, as many as 50% of people living in flood-prone areas were […]

Things you didn’t know you didn’t know part 312 – ceramic grinding beads

Many industries, such as the paint industries and mining, have requirements to grind materials up into fine powders, and one of the ways to do this is with ceramic grinding beads. For example, these beads are used in mining, ground calcium carbonate, silica, white cement, other minerals, ceramics, chemical products and abrasives. There are several […]

The energy sector in the post-Covid-19 world

Here in the UK, wherever you live, it’s not possible to have failed to have noticed how things have changed over the past few weeks with the government-dictated lock-down. We’ve certainly known about Covid-19 for quite a bit longer than that, however, not many of can have foreseen the country-wide restrictions on movement we’re experiencing at […]

I used to be a joiner

Not many people know this about me, but I started my work life doing a joinery apprenticeship. My dad was a career joiner and I began working with him when I was a teenager. It wasn’t always much fun – at that age you get all the jobs no one else wants to do like […]

A recent visit to the University of Sheffield got me thinking…

Having spent several days, whilst doing some recent work, exploring some of the sprawling University of Sheffield research sites, I began to wonder how on earth they keep track of their equipment. Honestly, I saw hundreds of huge, expensive machines and I dread to think how many smaller items there are that I didn’t see […]

What is a Phytochemical?

A phytochemical substance or phytochemicals are chemical compounds produced my plants and are generally designed to provide a benefit of some sort such as a defence against pathogens, to help thwart predators (for example they may be a poisonous substance in leaves), or provide a competitive advantage (such as growth inhibitors that are released and […]

Molecular extraction from biological samples

Following on from the recent series of articles on the subject of industries you probably didn’t know exist, this latest one is on molecular extraction from biological samples. There are many reasons that molecules may need to be extracted and this technology is used by many different industries such as the nuclear industry (for example, […]

A new approach to preventable lifestyle illnesses

Did you know, according to many doctors, for humans, biological ageing, by itself, is not a major problem until your about 80. In other words, take preventable ‘lifestyle’ illnesses out of the equation and many of us would be fit and healthy right through to our 9th decade – preventable lifestyle illnesses are the major […]