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A few tips to improve my presentation in front of a panel of industrial experts

The students of our Faculty of Engineering have the opportunity to present some of their personal works (mechanical design projects, master’s theses, …) in front of a panel of experts coming from the industrial or business world. As academic people could have a different sensitivity regarding the outcomes, it is fruitful to develop an appropriate communication strategy. 

Here are some tips to improve your communication.

  • Identify yourself
  • Be aware of economical issues
  • Check if the data used for the validation of your methodology are realistic or not. Even if published in the scientific literature, this is not necessarily the case.
  • In your conclusion, prove how an enterprise can get the benefit of the scientific work you produced.

Mission to Russia

From this Easter Sunday, look a joint delegation from the University of Mons and the University of Valenciennes and Hainaut-Cambrésis will conduct a mission to Russia to meet their academic partners. The number of students interested in Russian language and culture is increasing more and more: the action of the Russian Centre at UMONS is certainly not unrelated to this. This justifies the strengthening of existing institutional agreements and the negociation of new ones. UMONS has significant scientific collaborations in Russia, case particularly in the field of photonics and telecommunications.
Anne Godart and Daria Balandina, colleagues of the Faculty of Translation and Interpretation, and Pierre Dehombreux, Vice-Rector for International Relations will visit the St. Petersburg State Electrotechnical LETI University and the State Pedagogical University of Russia Herzen. In Moscow, the delegation will attend the Franco-Russian forum for railway training, which is organized at the State University of Railway Engineering MIIT and will be welcomed at the State Pedagogical University MPGU and State University Lomonosov where six students of the Faculty of Translation and Interpretation have an internship. Finally, Mons delegation will visit the State Pedagogical University of Yaroslavl , a city of 600 000 inhabitants located 250 km north – east of Moscow.

See our dedicated brochure: UMONS_UVHC_Russia2014

A few tips to improve your communication by email

  • Define an object with right keywords: an empty object field could direct your message to the spam box!
  • Be concise! In most cases, healing only the first two lines of your email will appear! Avoid empty lines between paragraphs.
  • Clarify which action is expected from your recipient. Plan to a single action request as many users (like me!) use their mailbox as a to-do list.
  • If you request a meeting, see define and document the issues to be addressed.
  • Avoid large attached files (if their size exceeds 1 Mb, prefer a file repository like Dropbox, SpeedyShare, … ).
  • The name of each attached files must be explicit. Avoid “Presentation.ppt”, “MyReport.doc” : prefer “TurbineProject_JacquesPelton_140315”, “HCRGears_FinalReport_SHenriot_140315”. (Include your name and version date, avoid blank spaces).
  • Identify yourself with an appropriate signature (your mobile phone number will be appreciated if you fix an appointment)

Other useful links:

6 key ways to improve your email communication

What Do I Have to Do for My Mechanical Design Project after One Month of Work?

At this stage, ambulance you have defined the technical specifications of the mechanical system you have to design. You should have a good overview of the “state-of-the-art” of similar machines available on the market. Make a chart (Excel table) with the technical features (load, size, mass, power, price, …) of the models that you have identified. From these data, provide some graphs like power vs load. You will be able to locate the equipment you design in this range.

It is now time to define your machine.

It is interesting to search for patents. The website of the department of machine design and production engineering provides useful links. Google Patents has a nice interface able to retrieve pdf documents.

Draw a kinematic diagram of your system. Define a coordinate system and refer to x, y and z axes when you describe the operation segment of your mechanical system. We defined 2D and 3D symbolic representations of kinematic pairs in the machine design course. Use them as far as possible but do not hesitate to draw an explicit contour of a part to improve the understanding. The kinematic diagram is a way of expression and is not an additional constraint. The purpose is to understand how the parts are joined together through kinematic pairs.

Tip: draw on blank paper and not on grid paper: you will be able to reproduce your free-hand drawing in your last report (this will be highly appreciated as pencil-aided design is more favorable to creativity than computer-aided design).

Welcome to students from China University of Mining and Technology – Beijing


We are pleased to welcome a new group of three students from CUMTB for a research internship in mechatronics, case materials and fluid mechanics, respectively.



CUMTB is a strong partner of the Faculty of Engineering. Collaborations mainly focus on materials science, mechanical engineering, operational research, risk management, geomechanics and deep underground mining. Prof He Manchao, recently nominated as a member of the Chinese Academy of Sciences, was awarded an Honorary Doctorate in 2012.

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New collaborations are expected between our respective departments of architecture.


Hypersonic flight – Conference on the SCRAMSPACE project

The Department of Mechanical Engineering is pleased to invite you to attend the conference entitled :

“SCRAMSPACE: Scramjet for Access to Space Flight Experiment”

by Dr. Eng. Sandy Tirtey (AIMs) on Monday, March 17th 2014, 2 PM
Auditorium 11, Faculty of Engineering, Rue de Houdain, 9 – 7000 Mons


“SCRAMSPACE is the first and largest project funded by the Australian Space Research Program. It builds on Australia’s world-class hypersonics heritage, and its core objective is to build capacity and capability, in particular a talent pool, for the Australian space and aerospace industry.

This is achieved partly by means of the Mach 8 flight experiment, for which a team of exceptional young scientists and engineers has been assembled, and partly through extensive ground-based research involving many PhD students at UQ and partner universities.”

More details about the project on the website of University of Queensland.

After the conference, Dr. Tirtey will be happy to discuss with students about student exchange programs that could be organized for them.

What Do I Have to Do during the First Two Weeks of My Mechanical Design Project?

This post is intended for the students engaged in the Mechanical Design Projects, story 1st year of Master’s Degree in Mechanical Engineering, pills University of Mons.

1. Write the specifications (“cahier des charges”) as soon as possible. This is an iterative process since it results from a discussion with your academic advisors. Examples are available on the Moodle platform.

2. Find as many documents as you can.

  • from Internet: no need to tell you to use Google and youtube.com. Try to keep and to update a list of your keywords and links (an text or Excel file with all references will be valuable to gather all the references). Consider pictures, images and videos.
  • from our central library
  • from patent libraries
  • from a distributor list of machines and components

3. Sharpen your pencil and produce sketches and drawings on paper sheets!

The rules of the Mechanical Design Project Game (when we play together)

This post is intended for the students engaged in the Mechanical Design Projects, 1st year of Master’s Degree in Mechanical Engineering, University of Mons.

The Department of Machine Design and Production is in charge of organizing projects for more than 100 students. This implies some organisational difficulties that will be overcome with an appropriate behaviour.

Every minute counts for us: as a student, we expect that you are able to produce any document to feed our discussion: your drawings, a printed copy of papers and documents that are needed as references. If we have to discuss your SolidWorks models, they should be available on a computer in Design Lab.

As in real professional life, you will have to write minutes of meetings. We suggest you to write a short summary of the information exchanged (in French or English) during our meeting. Send it to us by email.

We will need time to answer your questions. It is much easier for us to handle an acute question, formulated in a single document with all equations, data and figures.

All documents you write must contain your name, the title of the project, the name of your supervisors and the current date.

An Ideal Library for Machine Design Projects

Besides the lecture notes of the courses available from the Moodle platform, order the students in mechanical engineering could be interested to know which books would be valuable for their personal bookshelf, pills especially in the perspective of the mechanical design project. It is possible to find valuable information on the Internet, but nothing replaces a printed document to get a complete overview on different technological options or high quality figures.
This is a first selection that will be completed over time. Do not hesitate to recommend your own proposals.

#1. A technological engineering handbook. Mémotech “Conception et dessin”  (Claude Barlier , René Bourgeois, Mémotech, Casteilla, 2011)  is a must-have with more than 650 pages of technical data and accurate design rules.

#2. A bearing catalogue (write to a distributor to get a paper copy)

#3. The Design of Rolling Bearing Mountings by Schlaeffer. (Print and bind it!)

#4. A coursebook on machine design written in English. (Fundamentals of Machine Elements by Bernard Hamrock et al., Machine Design – An Integrated Approach by Robert L. Norton, Mechanical Design Engineering Handbook by Peter R.N. Childs, …)

#5. A collection of printed catalogues for belts, chains, electrical motors, sealings, … (write to distributors)

#6. A general engineering handbook (Dubbel Taschenbuch für den Maschinenbau, available in English; Mechanical Design Handbook by Harold A. Rothbart)

#7. A coursebook on machine design written in German

References #1, #2 and #3 are essential.