Engineering Design Show 2015 Preview

13 October 2015

The Engineering Design Show returns to the Ricoh Arena on 21-22 October 2015. The event, launched in 2012, was designed for design engineers. It combines high value technical conference sessions, practical workshops and the ability to discuss the latest technology with leading suppliers.

Since 2012, the event has gone from strength to strength, with the co-located Electronics Design Show and Embedded Design Show providing designers will the answers to all their problems under the one roof.

Despite all this success and growth, however, we have never lost sight of the principle that has underpinned the Engineering Design Show from the beginning: namely that it is an exhibition for design engineers. The idea behind the Show has always been to fill that fundamental need to meet your professional needs as a design engineering professional and one thing we can guarantee is that this year will be no different in that respect.

Below you can find a special preview for the 2015 Engineering Design Show, detailing the conferences, workshops, and exciting features/innovations to watch out for. We look forward to seeing you there!



There will be no shortage of outstanding content at this year's Eureka Conference. Here are just a few of the highlights:

Engineering success in the America’s Cup
Andy Claughton, Technical Director, Land Rover BAR

The America's Cup, which has never been won by Britain, is the ultimate sailing challenge. Fortunately, the Land Rover BAR team has the world's best sailor in Sir Ben Ainslie at the helm. It has also been described as being as much of an engineering competition as a sailing one. Andy Claughton is the man responsible for engineering the boat that will challenge for the next America's Cup and in this presentation he will outline the challenges, the strategy and the reliance on engineering expertise from around British industry.

From Formula 1 to Formula E...and beyond
Ian Cluett, Head of Programmes and Commercial, Williams (F1) Advanced Engineering

Find out from one of the biggest names in motorsport how F1 innovations are being applied to the wider world, even beyond the automotive industry. In particular, this session will go into detail about how energy storage technology developed for F1 is trickling down into others areas of motorsport, and even outside of racing altogether into the mainstream.

Making Solar Impulse light enough to fly
Dr.-Ing. Hubert Ehbing, Director Processing and Application Technology, Covestro (formerly Bayer Material Science)

This presentation covers the work done to develop the materials for the Solar Impulse aircraft, which is currently traversing the globe powered by nothing more than the sun. Development of the materials and their careful design was vital to make Solar Impulse airworthy. This landmark project utilises just about every materials engineering trick in the book.

High-performance engineering – achieving world records
Graham Mulholland, Managing Director, EPM Technology

Graham Mulholland will be giving an introduction to his business and also an overview of the projects he was involved in with Guy Martin and his 'Speed' television series. The gravity sledge, gravity racer and tandem bike were produced by EPM Technology, all primarily using composite materials to achieve the world records and re-define the boundaries of high-performance engineering.

The Airlander, the world’s biggest aircraft
Chris Daniels, Head of Partnerships and Communications, Hybrid Air Vehicles

The Airlander is the very latest in aerospace, fusing aerodynamic and aerostatic lift in an innovative manner. It takes the best of aeroplanes, helicopters and airships to create a ground-breaking aircraft with unprecedented endurance (up to three weeks) and unprecedented flexibility on moving cargo from point to point, landing and taking-off from water, ice, desert or marsh.

To see the full conference programme, click here.


A series of high-quality, technical workshops bring together motivational and informative presentations to provide hands-on advice on topics including:

  • Automation
  • 3D printing and additive manufacturing
  • Ceramic and metal injection moulding
  • Materials selection
  • Digital manufacturing
  • Lightweighting and metal replacement
  • Design software simulation
  • Foam seal technology

To see the full workshop programme, click here.


The 2015 Engineering Design Show will host an Innovation Zone sponsored by Cambridge Consultants, which will provide a number of features and innovations demonstrating the best of British Engineering, as well as the Tunnel of Innovation, and the BEEAs Hive.

Features at this year's show will include:

The Innovation Zone

Air curtains for hospital bed

It’s often said that engineers save more lives than doctors, and we have one exhibit that can demonstrate how. There is an urgent need to tackle the threat to humanity posed by emerging infections. At the moment the pharmaceutical industry is not financially attracted to produce alternatives or new antibiotics. This is where engineers and designers can play their part. We have a pioneering design of hospital bed on show which features an air curtain that can keep infections at bay. The actual unit will be in the Innovation Zone.

Airlander – the biggest aircraft

There will be few more impressive sights than when the Airlander takes to the skies next year. This hybrid aircraft, the world’s largest aircraft, combines the natural buoyancy of a traditional airship with the some of the aerodynamic features of an aeroplane. Visitors can see a scaled down model on the Innovation Zone.

Throw and go drones

Based upon a unique form of cyclcogyro propulsion, the D-DALUS aircraft could eventually revolutionise the way we travel. This disruptive technology has faced considerable opposition from established aircraft designers. However, IAT21 (the company behind the project) is now taking the concept into a new phase by constructing a hybrid rotorcraft, or Compound Helicopter, with over 60% more efficiency than conventional helicopters, which is seen as a stepping stone towards the eventual development of a passenger craft. A demo video will be played in the Innovation Zone.

Colourful coatings

Plasma-sprayed ceramic and metallic coatings are coming through that protect components against the effects of heat, wear, abrasion and corrosion and, far from being dull, are now available in a range of colours! The developer of this technology is Zircotec who say it can be applied to a broad range of different materials including metals and composites, and is already proven in F1.

Cambridge Consultants' innovative technologies

Through-metal communications

The oil and gas industry relies on complex data to improve recovery and profitability, and to protect people and the environment. Often this involves transmission across long distances or through physical barriers. Cambridge Consultants specialises in novel communications and one of these is to take the transmission of data through metal. Conventionally this would be considered near-impossible but Cambridge Consultants has been able to demonstrate useful data rates being transmitted and can show and discuss on the Innovation Zone.

Lateral thinking

Operators of oil and gas fields are always on the lookout for better ways to monitor the fluid flows in oil wells – as this information is crucial for maximising reservoir productivity. Cambridge Consultants will demonstrate how it has used its expertise in radio frequency sensors and downhole engineering to identify techniques to detect and locate water breakthrough – critical in reservoir productivity - using a distributed sensor suitable for horizontal wells.

Smart adaptive robots

Robots are amazingly good at doing the same thing over and over again within a controlled environment. Where they struggle is doing ‘not quite’ the same thing, over and over again. Cambridge Consultants will have a live robotics demonstration showing how its industrial sensing and control team has combined high-powered image-processing algorithms with low-cost sensors and commodity hardware to allow ‘soft’ control of robots when the task is not rigidly defined.

Tunnel of Innovation

Record bike in tandem

Manufactured by Derby-based composites firm EPM Technology, and designed by the same team that produced Chris Boardman’s gold-medal winning bike at the 1992 Barcelona Olympics, the tandem bike became a record-breaker on Guy Martin’s Speed TV Show, as Martin and Jason Miles aimed to achieve the greatest distance ridden on a tandem in 24 hours. Visiting delegates to the Tunnel of Innovation will be able to see up close the ingenuity and design that produced a solution to various issues that faced Guy Martin and his team.

Coffee Time Challenge

The Coffee Time Challenge is a popular regular section in the Eureka Magazine. Their readers are presented with a Coffee Time Challenge, the challenge being to think up innovative solutions to everyday, unsolved problems. A small selection of solutions taken from the last year, all of which will be on display in the Innovation Tunnel: this includes a gravity light, a renewable energy harvester that is the size of a bottle of water, a zero energy rainwater recovery system, and a combined sensing device and smartphone app that stops you from getting over-exposure of the sun.

The BEEA Hive

This area will give details of all the shortlisted companies for the British Engineering Excellence Awards (BEEAs), a week ahead of the awards ceremony itself. The gallery represents much that is at the pinnacle of British engineering, from outstanding individuals and teams, to break through companies and game-changing products.