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Top STEAM Moments 2019: Engineering

Our team has rounded up the topengineering moments of 2019. From steely rockets to cybertrucks. It's been an enormous year for engineering!

1. Electric Cars

Mark Jones – Head of Development (Uncle to many)

Personally, the most important engineering moment of 2019 was the improvements and advances in the Electric Vehicles sector. I think the switch to electric vehicles is a must and I love seeing so much progress being made towards that goal. There’s been a 144% increase in registration of fully Electric Cars in the UK this year! We’ve not caught up with Norway, where electric cars made up nearly 60% of passenger vehicle sales in March 2019, but it’s a huge improvement.

We’ve seen a range of affordable electric vehicles come to the market this year and they cost considerably less than their predecessors. I believe we will continue to see prices become more affordable, bringing electric vehicle ownership closer to more people in the future.

This year has also seen a trend for traditional petrol and gas car manufacturers like Audi to start shifting from their usual diesel-based vehicles to electric. After launching its first urban electric truck in 2018, Volvo has started to pilot a heavy-duty electric truck in Europe in the last couple of months.

It’s been a real pleasure to watch the growth of this industry as a shift to electric cars will have incredible benefits to the environment.

2. SpaceX Starship Rocket

Chris Catton – Head of Product, Creator of Arcade Coder (Dad to Arthur, 7 and Fred, 3)

What really caught my attention in engineering this year was the announcement of using stainless steel in SpaceX’s new Starship rocket! Originally the rocket was to be built using carbon fiber but the cheaper price of stainless steel along with its performance in extreme temperatures and resistance to corrosion mean that this material, once confined to the cutlery drawer, is now set to take center stage in the new space race. And that mirror finish looks incredible too!

The first Starship prototype is set to launch in around 3 months which, if successful, could lead to some big breakthroughs in how we explore space!

3. Boyan Slat & The Ocean Cleanup Interceptor

Liam Fisher – Head of Digital (Father of Gabriel, 7 & Audrey, 2 months old)

Boyan Slat, founder & CEO of The Ocean Cleanup, is the kind of genius the world needs! His Ocean Cleanup Initiative is already successfully helping to remove waste from the Great Pacific Garbage Patch. And he now has plans to intercept ocean plastic pollution at its source: rivers. 

I am really impressed by the way he affirms that his agenda is to ‘solve problems’ and that he saw cleaning up ocean plastic as a ‘good starter problem’ for him to solve. With this attitude, imagine what else he can do for the world!? 

I can’t wait to see what happens when he starts working on the carbon emissions problem!