Greetings to all worthy readers. Today we will be sharing our views about an un-orthodox field of engineering.
In general, we all follow trends whether they are related to regular life or profession i.e. Fashion, Stocks, Supply & Demand, which is quite fair. Similar is the case when we choose a field to establish a carrier. Trends of engineering in our society are limited to Mechanical, Electrical, Civil, Chemical. Therefore, due to high demand of admission in these fields, their merits are sky high even if the degree is not worthy of it. Ends result we have in the form of jobless engineers due to saturation. This happens due to lack of knowledge about the plenty of other fields which offers a bright future people are afraid to go against the odds due to pressure of trends of our society. The famous quote one listens is, “There is no scope in this field”.
We would like you all to remember one thing. Scope is always within a man.
Now we will discuss & explain a field you can join to pursue a carrier in robotics and smart machines which is the future of planet earth.
Mechatronics a word made from mechanics and electronics. This means it is a hybrid field which comprises of mechanical and electrical in dimensions. Due to vast applications of both individual fields, Mechatronics primarily focuses on designing of mechanical hardware and electronics of a system, integration of state-of-the-art sensors and programming of the whole system with artificial intelligence and machine learning smart techniques. These words seem fancy, but it is the need of hour to have smart systems which reduces labor and human error to perform a particular job. As far as its scope is concerned, a Mechatronics Engineer can take place of an Electrical as well as Mechanical engineer working together in a field.
Mechatronics & Defense Sector
Considering defense, the demand of mechatronics engineer is surging as the modern era machines are comprised of hybrid electrical and mechanical systems with computer assisted command and control. For example, a modern UAV is based upon the following things
- Aerodynamic Structure Design
- Electronics and Sensors
- Digital Signal Processing
- Command and Control
- Artificial Intelligence & Machine Vision
following are general contents of Mechatronics Engineering, which includes majorly all above
- Embedded Systems
- Computer Programming
- Mechanical CADs
- Mechanics and Mechanisms
- Electrical Machinery
- Hydraulic Systems
- Digital Control Systems
- Digital Signal Processing and Systems
- Machine Vision and Intelligent Systems
Applications of Mechatronics through R&D by Pakistan’s Defense Sector
HADAF by NRTC
HADAF is small 4 wheel remotely operated robot suited for surveillance missions. Multiple cameras mounted on gives the operator a 360° view. HADAF is equipped with 5 degree of freedom robotic arm that can easily manipulate IEDs. It can grab a maximum payload of 13 kg. Its modular water-resistant design and its payload capacity of 120 kg provide multiple payloads like RCIED jammer, robotic arm, situational awareness camera lifts, mine and explosive detectors and recoilless disrupters. It can also carry an offensive payload for anti-tank operation and has the capability of carrying people in rescue mission. The lightweight and compact operator control unit works in a range of 800-1000 m.The 2-speed control allows a maximum speed of 15 km/h. The 4×4 wheel differential drive authorizes zero turning radius. Thanks to its four rechargeable batteries, with maximum endurance of 180 min on plane surface and 120 min on rough surface. The HADAF also features a GPS and can receive files through the USB. Besides EOD robotic arm and camera mast, the HADAF can carry a RCIED jammer, EOD disrupter and shot gun, PTZ night vision cameras explosive detector.
ZF-1 Viper by UAS-Global
ZF-1 Viper is a 5th generation unmanned aerial vehicle being developed by UAS-G for Pakistan armed forces. It will be capable of Suppressing Enemy Air Defenses, Deep Penetration Strike, Low Radar Signature, Reconnaissance and Electronic Warfare. It will also have Air-Air capability in future. Technical Specifications include maximum takeoff weight 16,000 Kg, maximum service ceiling of 30,000 ft, wingspan of 18 m, Speed 0.8 Mach, Payload 300 Kg, Range 500 Km.
“SOLARIS” “High Altitude Satellite” by Integrated Dynamics
The Integrated Dynamics SOLARIS High Altitude Pseudo Satellite Unmanned Aerial Vehicle (HAPS UAV) has a total endurance time up to 24 hours and it has a total weight up to 13 Kilograms only. Integrated Dynamics is marketed the SOLARIS High Altitude Pseudo Satellite Unmanned Aerial Vehicle (HAPS UAV) with the estimated cost under $100,000.
The company is planning to further extend the endurance of the SOLARIS High altitude Pseudo Satellite Unmanned Aerial Vehicle (HAPS UAV) up to 4 days in the upgraded and advanced version of the Solaris HAPS UAV.
The Integrated Dynamics also revealed that it has also undertaken the development project of a larger version of High Altitude Pseudo Satellite Unmanned Aerial Vehicle (HAPS UAV) named as STRATOS. The Integrated Dynamics STRATOS High Altitude Pseudo-Satellite Unmanned Aerial Vehicle (HAPS UAV) has an operating elevation up to 72,000 Ft (22 Kilometers) and it can stay in the air up to one month. As far as the payload options of the STRATOS HAPS UAV is concerned; it can carry a maximum payload up to 12 Kilograms in total.
It is worth mentioning that the basic aim of the High Altitude Pseudo-Satellite Unmanned Aerial Vehicle is to offer a cost-effective alternative to costly satellites, such as high altitude surveillance asset or communication repeater. The indigenous development of the SOLARIS and STRATOS High Altitude Pseudo Satellite Unmanned Aerial Vehicle will not only help to carry out certain civilian tasks, but it will also help to boost the Defense of PAKISTAN with certain Military Applications as well
Shahpar by GIDS
Shahpar is a medium range tactical UAV System with autonomous take-off and landing. It can carry various types of payloads integrated for reconnaissance and day & night surveillance. Other features include accurate lateral, longitudinal trajectory control, mission planning, management & control, geo referencing & geo pointing for terrestrial targets.
Burraq by NESCOM
The NESCOM Burraq is an unmanned combat aerial vehicle (UCAV) developed and built by the National Engineering and Scientific Commission (NESCOM), a civil scientific research and development organization of Pakistan, along with the Pakistan Air Force (PAF)
Primarily used by the PAF, it has also been used by the Pakistan Army (PA) in its counter-insurgency operations in north-west Pakistan. The Burraq carries various imagery and motion sensors and is equipped with a pair of laser guided air-to-surface missile named “Barq”.
Following are some practical examples of systems made individually by our engineers
Intelligent Mobile Robots for Disaster Management & Firefighting
Tele-Surgical Training Robot and Simulator
Here are some fields in which mechatronics engineers can contribute further to benefit our country:
- Drone Swarm for SEAD operations
•Automation in Industries
•Emergency Logistics Delivery Drones