Materials in action
L Eccles, Qioptiq, UK

To the casual observer, structures often appear to perform just one or two clear tasks, such as supporting loads or acting as protective enclosures.

In practice Engineers are able exploit the many and varied properties of materials to create structures that perform a multitude of functions and address many demanding and often conflicting requirements. In practice many of the roles structures are performing aren't always apparent.

Using a weapon sight as an example, this talk describes the many demands that need to be met, and functions that can be delivered, by the main mechanical structure of the product.

The talk concludes with a brief view from the optics industry about those material developments that are of particular interest with regard to meeting future business needs.