MESSAGE OF CONGRATULATIONS
-Hope to explore the possibility of closer partnership between the JSME and The NUS ME-
The Mechanical Engineering (ME) Department at the National University of Singapore (NUS) is honored and privileged to be invited to this joyful and significant occasion which celebrates the 120th anniversary of the foundation of the Japan Society of Mechanical Engineers (JSME). The NUS ME Department wishes to congratulate the JSME for its remarkable achievements over the past 120 years in the advancement of science and technology and in the development of mechanical engineering industries in Japan. It is noteworthy that the JSME serves as Japan’s leading engineering society with a membership exceeding 35,000. The JSME thus constitutes a vital link which bridges Japanese companies, universities, and government organizations. The JSME is to be congratulated for making significant contributions to the development of highly advanced mechanical engineering technologies developed in Japan, especially in the areas of automobiles and transportation, mechatronics and automation, biotechnology, nanotechnology, as well as energy and sustainability.
The two key challenges facing Mechanical Engineering in Singapore are building up talent in the field, and keeping abreast of the changes in its practice. Attracting high-calibre students to study mechanical engineering is becoming more challenging. Interest in STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics) among students has lessened, and more now gravitate towards the humanities, business and finance. This has also made it more challenging to attract outstanding students to take on careers in mechanical engineering. The NUS ME Department and the mechanical engineering related societies in Singapore have indeed a great deal to learn from the JSME in terms of the strategies adopted for promoting mechanical engineering science and technology to our mechanical engineering students and professionals. The JSME has recognized that a single discipline is no longer adequate to satisfy the needs of the society and to provide solutions to the numerous sophisticated problems faced by the modern world. The efforts made by the JSME in organizing activities amongst members and stakeholders which promote interdisciplinary collaboration are indeed commendable. The NUS ME Department has also been adapting its undergraduate curriculum in recent years to equip our students with the skills to solve complex engineering problems in diverse teams and in multidisciplinary settings. It will thus be invaluable for the NUS ME Department to tap on the experience and expertise of the JSME in inculcating the importance of interdisciplinary collaboration and cross-disciplinary research in our students, researchers and academic staff.
Over the past several decades, Japanese consumer products and household appliances have firmly established themselves internationally as items of immensely high quality, reliability, robustness, innovation, superior technology and trustworthiness. Singapore’s two best-selling car brands for the year 2016 are manufactured in Japan by Honda and Toyota, respectively. These two Japanese automobile titans have emerged at the top of the Singapore sales charts, with both companies dominating a massive 43 percent of the market. Japan was the first country in the world to build dedicated railway lines for high-speed travel. The world’s first bullet train commuting between Tokyo and Osaka with a top speed of 210 km/h was developed and constructed in Japan. The JSME has undoubtedly served as a vital catalyst in the development and advancement of numerous revolutionary and widespread Japanese mechanical engineering technologies. These technologies serve as valuable case studies for the students from the NUS ME Department. Undergraduate students from the NUS ME Department also have opportunities to participate in Student Exchange Programmes with partner universities in Japan. Majority of the undergraduate students from the NUS ME Department are required to undergo a 24-week internship. Such internships enable students to integrate knowledge and theory acquired in the classroom with practical application and skill development in a professional setting. It will be worthwhile to explore the possibility of students from the NUS ME Department undergoing their internships at Japanese companies and organizations.
The NUS ME Department hopes to collaborate with the JSME to explore such internship opportunities. The JSME has established an Agreement of Cooperation with the Institute of Engineers Singapore (IES) since April 22 1997. The NUS ME Department hopes to explore the possibility of closer partnership with the JSME in terms of education, research and industrial engagement. The JSME has indeed made prominent and remarkable achievements in promoting mechanical engineering in Japan for the past 120 years. The NUS ME Department wishes the JSME all the very best for the future, especially in fostering collaboration between mechanical engineering specialists working in academic and corporate environments through academic research and technological developments.
Associate Professor TEO Chiang Juay
Affiliation: Department of Mechanical Engineering, National University of Singapore
Research Field: Fluid Mechanics, Aerodynamics, Aerospace Propulsion, Hydrodynamics, Microfluidics
Professor SHIM Victor, P.W.
Affiliation: Department of Mechanical Engineering, National University of Singapore
Research Field: Impact Mechanics, Dynamic Material Behaviour, Fabric Penetration, Cellular Materials, Mechanics of Biological Materials, Physical Robustness of Products and Components
The Mechanical Engineering Department at the National University of Singapore
The National University of Singapore (NUS) is a comprehensive university which offers students a wide range of courses and enhances their educational experience through multidisciplinary and cross-faculty initiatives. The Department of Mechanical Engineering (ME) is the largest department in the NUS Faculty of Engineering in terms of student population. The Department has approximately 1700 students, 80% of whom are undergraduates. It has about 65 Academic Staff Members who are actively involved in both teaching and research. The NUS ME Department is ranked 13th in the world, according to the Quacquarelli Symonds (QS) World University Rankings by Subject 2017. It is regarded as 24th in the world by the Times Higher Education World University Rankings 2016-2017.
The Vision Statement of the NUS ME Department is “A Mechanical Engineering Department characterized by excellence in education, research and innovation for a changing world”, whereas the Department’s Mission Statement is “To nurture Mechanical Engineers, able to provide leadership and innovative solutions to technological challenges, for the benefit of society”.
The undergraduate Mechanical Engineering course is typically a four-year programme, which has evolved over the years to meet challenges in technology development and industry. It emphasizes the fundamentals of engineering science, as well as applications relevant to current industry. The Bachelor of Engineering (B. Eng.) degree in Mechanical Engineering is accredited by the Engineering Accreditation Board (EAB) of Singapore. The degree is also internationally recognized for admission to graduate studies in all the major universities around the world. The NUS ME department also offers two research-based graduate degree programmes: Master of Engineering (M. Eng.) and Doctor of Philosophy (Ph.D.).
Research also constitutes a vital pillar of the NUS ME Department. Both fundamental research to seek new understanding of physical phenomena and applied research to develop new products and processes to meet the needs of industry are pursued. The Department has identified several thematic research growth areas, such as Advanced Manufacturing Systems, Aeronautical Engineering, Bio-mechanical Engineering, Defence Technology, Design and Processing of Innovative Materials, Energy Systems for Cooling and Desalination, Future Transportation, Green Technology, Micro- and Nano-Systems Technology, Offshore and Marine Engineering and Robotics. Research is undertaken in 16 teaching cum research laboratories, which are equipped with many latest state-of-the-art experimental, computational and manufacturing facilities. Faculty members often work in multidisciplinary teams and have been successful in securing research grants and funding from government agencies and industry. They publish regularly in high impact factor journals in their respective areas of expertise, and many of these publications are well-cited.
There is the perception that mechanical engineering jobs are strenuous and mundane. In fact, engineering jobs have been among the top professions with the most vacancies over the past few years in Singapore. The nature of mechanical engineering in Singapore has also evolved beyond its traditional characteristics, to becoming more specialized, in fields like aerospace and offshore and marine engineering. Our industries have developed basic competence in many areas of mechanical engineering; however, we are still some way to go in terms of generating cutting edge technology. With time, the role of mechanical engineers has become increasingly sophisticated. They now have to acquire abilities in project management, assume leadership roles in complex and multidisciplinary projects, etc, to augment their technical skills.
There are several mechanical engineering related societies in Singapore, such as the Singapore section of the American Society of Mechanical Engineers (ASME); the Singapore branch of the Institution of Mechanical Engineers (IMechE); the Institution of Engineers Singapore (IES); the Professional Engineers Board Singapore (PEB). The Singapore section of the ASME promotes the technical and professional development of ASME members residing in Singapore, and also assists in furthering the purposes of ASME. The Singapore branch of the IMechE serves to promote technical and continuing professional development of members residing in or visiting Singapore, through meetings and other forms of communication. The mission of the IES is to advance and promote the science, art and profession of engineering for the well-being of mankind. The PEB’s Mission is to safeguard life, property, and welfare of the Singapore public by setting and maintaining high standards that govern the registration of professional engineers, and by regulating and advancing the practice of professional engineering. These societies frequently organize activities such as conferences and workshops with foreign counterparts.
Photo : The NUS FSAE team at the annual Formula SAE International Challenge in Michigan, US held between 10 and 13 May 2017. The team was ranked 14th worldwide (out of 120 teams).