BEng Mechanical Engineering

Year of entry: 2023

Course unit details:
Design 3 (Mechanical)

Course unit fact file
Unit code MECH31041
Credit rating 10
Unit level Level 3
Teaching period(s) Semester 1
Available as a free choice unit? No


In this unit the students work in small groups and act as an engineering design team tasked with solving a design problem inspired by real industrial experience.  Past projects have included the design of a chamfering machine for aerofoil seals, the design of an impact test rig for machine guard tools, and the design of a test rig for hip implants. 

This course unit detail provides the framework for delivery in 20/21 and may be subject to change due to any additional Covid-19 impact.  Please see Blackboard / course unit related emails for any further updates


To provide experience in designing an engineered device or system using a team approach, and utilising core course material assimilated in years one and two.


The students form groups or teams of four and are given a design brief by the client (the lecturers). By the end of the unit (week 12) each group is expected to present a feasible solution to the problem given in the design brief.  By the end of the unit, the students will be able to:

1. Work efficiently within a small team,

2. manage and plan a sequence of work both on an individual and team level,

3. communicate effectively with team members, and

4. produce group-based documents. 

In order to successfully complete the unit, the groups have to perform a number of design tasks and submit the supporting documentation as described below.

Generate and evaluate concepts

The team have to develop a selection of concepts (one per team member) that could fulfil the technical specification supplied. The team must then evaluate these concepts against a provided technical specification and decide upon a final concept that will be developed further. This will all be documented in a concepts report. Upon completion of this task, the students will be able to: 

  1. conduct research into design problems,
  2. develop concepts from initial ideas and inspirations,
  3. communicate concepts in an unambiguous and effective manner,
  4. appraise concepts using a logical and clear methodology, and
  5. critically assess how a concept idea can be improved.

Embody the design

The team have to develop the chosen concept into an embodiment design that includes full scientific justification and considers environmental impacts, operating safety etc. and submit an embodiment (final) design report.  The team have to compose illustrative CAD drawings that fully explain the embodiment design and its operation. Upon completion of this task, the students will be able to: 

  1. select and size proprietary components,
  2. design bespoke components,
  3. justify important design choices,
  4. use an industry-standard CAD package,
  5. assess the level of detail required in a drawing,
  6. choose the most appropriate view or projection, and
  7. produce a coherent group report with illustrative drawings that are clear and unambiguous.

Assessment methods

Method Weight
Report 100%

Feedback methods

Informal feedback (guidance) is given throughout the design sessions.  Formal written and verbal feedback is usually given for the submitted documents two weeks after submission.  However, for the technical specification and conceptual designs report, preliminary verbal feedback is given one week after submission to prevent the design process from stalling.  For the oral presentation, verbal feedback is given at the end of the presentation.

Study hours

Scheduled activity hours
Lectures 4
Project supervision 20
Independent study hours
Independent study 76

Teaching staff

Staff member Role
Akin Atas Unit coordinator

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