Romance, love, and engineering! Many couples throughout history weren’t just ion love; they also helped to shape the world we live in, including how engineers work today. And they did it together.

Hertha and William Ayrton

Hertha Ayrton, also known as Phoebe Sarah Marks, was a 19th century British engineer, inventor, mathematician, and physicist. As the first woman to read her own paper at the Institution of Electrical Engineers (IEE) in 1899, also known as The Institution of Engineering and Technology, Hertha had a great impact on the lives around her, including her husband William’s. Her husband said to Hertha’s cousin, Dr Philip Hartog, “you and I are able people, but Hertha is a genius.”

She conducted investigations on the characteristics of the electric arc, a main public lighting source in the late 19th century. Hertha wrote a number of papers on the issue of flickering and hissing that the electric arc had. She was also the first woman member of the IEE to win the Hughes Medal, and she furthered her research into the electric arc and other subjects over the years, which made her a renowned name in electric engineering both nationally and internationally.

William Ayrton, electric engineer and physicist, is known for his work into a wide variety of subjects, such as the dielectric constants of gases, terrestrial magnetism, and viscosities of dielectrics. He is credited with the introduction of the electric arc into Japan, in 1878, and important works on railway electrification, the electric searchlight, the first ever electric tricycle, and the dynamometer.

Emily Warren and Washington Roebling

Civil engineer Emily Warren Roebling is mainly responsible for the guidance of the construction of the Brooklyn Bridge. Her husband was the son of the designer of the Brooklyn Bridge, John A. Roebling. Washington was an American civil engineer who became chief engineer and supervisor of the construction of the Brooklyn Bridge upon his father’s death.

Emily took on her husband’s duties as chief engineer of the Brooklyn Bridge upon his illness, which allowed her to develop and expand her knowledge on cable construction, strength of materials, stress analysis, and catenary curve calculations. Her efforts ensured the completion of the bridge, as she was unyielding about her husband remaining as chief engineer, and on the bridge being finished.

Lillian Moller and Frank Bunker Gilbreth

Industrial engineer Lillian Moller Gilbreth was one of the first working female engineers with a PhD. Lillian is considered to be the first organizational psychologist, applying her perspectives of psychology, engineering, motherhood, and being a wife in order to aid industrial engineers realise the importance of psychological dimensions. Considered to be a pioneer on industrial and organizational psychology, Dr Gilbreth applied the principles of scientific management to every day household tasks in order to provide women with optimised ways of doing housework so that they could look for paid employment.

Lillian’s husband, Frank, was a pioneer of time and motion study and a management engineer. Together with his wife, he promoted scientific management and studied clerical employees and manufacturing across several industries in order to streamline the output of their jobs. His work for the US Army during WWI allowed soldiers to be more efficient in assembling and disassembling small arms, reducing the hand motions to 17.

If you want to know more about our services, you can contact us on +44 (0) 208 663 1800 to speak to our team; we’re always happy to answer any query you might have.

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Springs are one of the most common items that are used in the industrial and manufacturing sectors, as well as in everyday objects; they help make our lives a whole lot easier and they are incredibly easy to manufacture and use.

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The great thing about springs is that they are incredibly versatile when it comes to the design, meaning that they can be used in various applications, as well as being designed so that they can be used in unique situations.

In the past, we have discussed the difference between two types of springs and, since they are the blogs that our loyal blog readers love most, we’ve decided to continue with series, starting up again with the difference between a compression spring and a gas spring.

Compression Springs

Compression springs are, without a doubt, the most common type of spring, as well as being the most economically viable to manufacture. They are made up of helically formed coils, which provides them with the ability to compress under pressure and then return to its original state when the pressure is released.

When the spring is compressed, it stores mechanical energy which can then transferred into other useful forms of energy, such as kinetic energy. Compression springs are most commonly used in applications where force is required to make the overall item work, such as light switches, retractable pens, medical devices, and even pogo sticks.

Gas Springs

Gas springs are a unique type of spring, as they do not operate via mechanical energy like compression and other forms of metallic springs. Instead, gas springs use a compressed gas that is contained in a cylinder. There is a piston located at the top of the spring that exerts a force via the compressed gas.

The most common uses of gas springs are in the automotive industry, such as in some door hinges and car boot mechanisms, the food processing sector, and in office furniture – your desk chair that you can raise and lower most likely has a gas spring inside.

Dogs With Car Harness in car boot

 

The Main Differences Between the Two Springs

The main difference between the two springs – apart from how they work – is that gas springs can exert a much greater force than traditional compression springs, due to the nature of the compressed gas and the amount of pressure it can apply.

A great example of demonstrating this is when you open the boot of your car to put your shopping in. Let’s imagine there were no springs whatsoever. Firstly, you need a mechanism that can handle the sheer weight of the car boot. You also need to make sure that the boot door remains open when you put your shopping into the car.

If you had a standard compression spring here, it would be incredibly difficult to lift the door open because the further you extend a compression spring, the harder it is to maintain. As such, an excessive force would be required to open the boot, as well as the spring needing to be incredibly strong and sturdy.

This is where gas springs come in; they provide the opportunity to lift heavy objects without returning to its original orientation, as well as being incredibly sturdy and having a slick, effective design.

As specialist spring manufacturers, we always ensure that all our products are of the highest quality and can withstand any difficult scenario, meaning that your safety is paramount to us.

If you want to know more about the products we can provide for you, then please get in touch today and we will be more than happy to help.

2016 has been a busy year when it comes to engineering, with some amazing structures being unveiled to the world. Engineering is an industry that incorporates everything from functionality to what the finished structure will look like, which is an amazing thing.Therefore, we have come up with a list of what we think are some fantastic feats of engineering in 2016.

The JTI Headquarters, Geneva

This spectacular building was built and designed by Skidmore, Owings & Merrill, which are regarded as one of the most influential architecture, interior design, engineering, and urban planning firms in the world.

The project included constructing a steel 10-foot story building that also featured a public courtyard that connected to a transport hub. The result was a triangular structure that had sloped elevations which were all supported by moment connections, meaning that the sloped areas would be able to resist gravity and lateral loads.

Birmingham New Street Station, Birmingham

This station is one of the busiest in the Midlands, as it is the central hub for people that want to travel between the North and the South of the UK, meaning that it gets its fair share of commuters daily; in 2014, it was the busiest station outside of London and the eight busiest in the UK.
Therefore, something needed to be done to the original 1960s transit building. It was decided in the late 2000s that the station would be rebuilt; work commenced in 2010, with work finishing in 2015. However, some replacements needed to be added in late 2015, and it was reopened in 2016. The final designs included a new concourse, a new exterior façade, and a new entrance on Stephenson Street.

The Ring of Celestial Bliss, Taiwan

This spectacular installation was completed by Envision Engineering and JJ Pan and Partners Architects and Planners to act as the main lantern and performance stage in the Taiwan Lantern Festival in 2013. The design itself is phenomenal, but it is also intriguing to think how the structure was used after the event.
To use its lighting potential, the area was transformed into a semi-outdoor basketball court, while being shrouded by a ‘lantern’ that is constructed from steel pipes that were clad in bamboo. By mixing art with nature, we get to see some of the most stunning pieces of engineering.

SkyMate, Adelaide, Australia

The SkyMate structure is an 85-foot tall adventure park that consists of 54 pod landings that spread across four levels which accommodate various leisure activities. Surprisingly, sixteen steel columns support the structure, but only six of them are anchored to the ground. But don’t worry, it’s safe for everyone!

These have been some truly inspiring engineering feats within the past year, but we are so excited for what to expect in the new year. As specialist spring manufacturers, we are always proud to be a part of such an ever-growing industry, as well as being part of some sensational projects, such as the development of the London Stadium and the new Tate Modern gallery.

If you want to know more about our services, you can contact us today and we will be more than happy to help.

There are many different engineering disciplines under the umbrella term of engineering, but not many people outside of the industry understand how all these different positions work together.

There are many different engineering disciplines under the umbrella term of engineering, but not many people outside of the industry understand how all these different positions work together.

Engineering as a whole relies on collaboration between various different engineering skill-sets, and to create an end product, it is essential that engineers from these disciplines work together and apply their knowledge to ensure that the product meets sometimes vigorous requirements.

Overview of the Disciplines

There are many different areas of engineering, but there are four main groups which cover each of these disciplines.

Firstly, there’s what is known as the big four – civil, electrical, mechanical and computer engineering. These are the four biggest disciplines within the industry, and cover a range of specific skill-sets. These are what contribute most to the economy, followed closely by the next four disciplines, which are known as the medium four.

Aerospace, manufacturing and industrial, chemical, and biomedical are such disciplines, and have a more niche focus, especially with regards to the industry that they are working in. However, this doesn’t mean that from time to time, these engineers can’t help other industries out!

The smaller disciplines such as agricultural, architectural, and environmental engineering are grouped together in another group. These disciplines are even more specific, focusing their skills within specific industries which may not necessarily seem like they need the help on an engineer on the outside.

The last group of disciplines are very specialist, meaning this group is quite small. Engineers which specialise in areas such as ocean engineering and electromagnetic engineering will fall into this category.

How They Can Work Together

A simple vending machine needs the help of four of the disciplines mentioned above to function and operate as it should. Mechanical, electrical, industrial and computer science engineers are involved throughout the design, manufacture, and production of even the simplest of vending machines.

The mechanical engineers are tasked with creating the mechanical motors within the machine which will allow easy delivery of the product to the end user, as well as keep the unit cool, which in turn keeps the food fresh.

Electrical engineers, om the other hand, are brought in to ensure that electricity is provided to the correct parts of the machine, through the use of micro controllers which help with the selection process, as well as keep the food and drink products cool and stored correctly. They need to ensure the right amount of power is supplied to keep the temperature levels perfect for the products inside to stay fresh.


Industrial engineers are more focussed on the human factors of the vending machine; namely how the machine looks, how easy it is to use, and how accessible it is. These engineers are tasked with making the vending machine usable by anyone by deciding on where important features should go, such as payment, collection and even selection options.

The computer science engineers are responsible for creating the user interface, as well as implementing a variety of tracking software to allow the owners of the machine to track aspects such as usage statistics, stock levels and determine if there are any specific product trends to improve the service that the vending machine supplies.

Here at European Springs, we have a wide range of engineers with a variety of disciplines to offer, and it’s why we’re one of the leading spring and wire form manufacturers! As expert tension spring manufacturers and flat spring manufacturers among many more, we understand the importance of different disciplines working together to create a working, reliable solution. To find out more about our services, please don’t hesitate to get in touch with us today!

The engineering sector is one of the largest sectors within the UK; it is so large that it was responsible for providing over a quarter of the UK’s GDP in 2016, which corresponded to £445.6 billion.


It is an industry that is thriving and is always seeking new talent. Are you thinking about joining the sector? If so, there is a lot to think about, such as what type of engineering career you are thinking about joining.

At European Springs, we encourage everyone to follow their dreams, so we’ve come up with a small list of the different types of engineering careers that you can join in the near future.

Aerospace Engineer

The aerospace sector is an incredibly important one in the UK, with companies such as Airbus, Rolls Royce, and BAE Systems being some of the largest and most important in the country. It is responsible for implementing the latest aviation technologies for the commercial, travel, and defence sectors.

As such, if you are thinking of going into the aerospace industry, engineering is a great way to do it. By learning the necessary skills, and information about it, you will flourish within that industry – and there are so many opportunities to work with some of the most prestigious names in our aerospace industry.

Medical Engineer

Medical engineers are another important asset. Medical engineers are responsible for creating MRI machines, as well as the various lasers that are used in cosmetic surgeries, clinics, and hospitals. If you need to have a CT scan, then it is likely that a medical engineer helped to build it.

You will also have to know the method of testing new equipment, how to safely dispose of old equipment, and also understand the importance of safety within the workplace. The medical industry is incredibly important, and it is always seeking new talent, so if you are interested in that sector, get looking now!

Manufacturing Engineer

This type of engineer focuses on manufacturing sciences and practice that includes everything from the research, design, and development of manufacturing systems to understanding every part of the machines and equipment, as well as how the processes work. They are vital in the manufacturing line, as they are always there to make sure that things are running smoothly, as well as ensuring that all the equipment is running efficiently and without any errors.

As leading spring manufacturers, European Springs employ an array of manufacturing engineers from all walks of life to make sure that the processes and equipment within our facilities, such as the spring manufacturing factories in London and Cornwall, run efficiently and without any faults.

Civil Engineer

Civil engineers are engineers that are responsible for the design, construction, and maintenance of large-scale structures that are used in everyday scenarios, such as roads, bridges, buildings, and other important structures. As it is focused on building large structures, mathematics and physics are incredibly important skills to have as a civil engineer.

You also have to be extremely hard working and meticulous with your work – you need to make sure that you don’t make any mistakes whilst working. However, it can also be one of the most rewarding disciplines, especially once you have completed a long project!


We love to take on new talent, which is why you can check out our latest vacancies on our page dedicated to new positions. We want to give everyone the opportunity to do something that they are passionate about and to join the ever growing and friendly European Springs team!

If you want to know more about our positions or anything with regards to engineering, please don’t hesitate to contact us today and one of our friendly members of staff will be more than happy to help.

We’re a day away from Christmas Eve, and we still can’t quite believe that 2016 has passed us by so fast. Maybe time has miraculously sped up or maybe we’ve just been incredibly busy for the past year that we haven’t had time to sit back and notice that Christmas was just around the corner!

We’ve had an incredible year here at European Springs. Our Beckenham offices working alongside experts on the new Tate Modern to create a spring mechanism which would play an essential role in the security of an anti-climb zone.

Our Redruth location has also been very busy this year, working alongside Liberty in London to create and deliver 80 springs for their incredible window displays! It’s not often that we’re asked to create springs which are for display purposes!

We also showcased the skills that we’ve developed over 70 years of European Springs to work on one of the biggest projects we’ve undertaken yet. Using a new Fortuna coiling machine, we were able to create bespoke springs that were used in West Ham stadium’s canopy system to dissipate loads!

We worked with Fabric Architecture, who have won awards for their work with tensile fabric structure, to create a bespoke solution which enabled the stadium to install fabric canopies to their existing retractable seating voids.

Our London site at Beckenham also had their year made back in August after being granted the ISO 14001:2015 certificate. This is a pretty big achievement, and it was all thanks to the introduction of an effective environmental management system!

That’s not all we’ve been up to, but to compile everything into one blog, we’d be here until new year!

Looking forward to 2017, we’re hoping to have an equally fruitful year, and it wouldn’t have been possible this year without you – our incredible clients. Thank you for your continued support and we hope to work with you all again next year!

So, from all of us here at European Springs –  Merry Christmas!

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