The life & times of an HVAC Engineer

{December 15, 2010}   With this ring…

Marriage is one of the oldest traditions that humans still adhere to, it has been around for thousands of years. So you would think that no engineers would be needed in creating a wedding. Especially not when that wedding is in a mediaeval building, is being lit by candles, and the bride is wearing a vintage dress. Well that’s exactly how my wedding was when I got married a couple of weeks ago, but even for our little chapter of a fairytale a fair few engineers were required at one stage or another…

For example, much as I think my husband scrubs up well, part of what made him look this good on our wedding day was the fantastically well made suit and hat he was wearing. That suit had a lot of input from a very talented tailor but it also needed engineers to design the machines on which the fabrics were woven. Engineers will also have designed the sewing machines that will have been used to put the suits together.

Our wedding took place a few minutes after the sun had set, so to add to the ambience – as well as helping people to find their way – we had a lot of candles. Some of these candles were outside, we used them to light a path to the door of the venue. To make sure the candles stayed alight and didn’t set anyone’s long dresses on fire we put them inside lanterns. However, being the sustainably minded, and not especially well off, people that we are we spent the year saving glass jars (and being given them by my work colleagues) and scrubbing them to use as lanterns. But we couldn’t have had them without the many products that use them and without the engineers who control the process of making them.

A family friend and another of my generous work colleagues were kind enough to offer to drive me, my bridesmaids and my parents to the wedding venue. Those two friends are both the proud owners of Jaguar S-types so we certainly arrived in style & comfort. Although a point for Jaguar engineers to note here is that the back seats of the car do not quite give enough space for wedding dresses…the mass of white you can see through the car window is my heaped up dress trying to squeeze back out of the car! But without those talented folk, like fellow blogger Danni, who design cars at Jaguar then it would have been a long walk in the snow that day.

Part of what made the day so much fun, and really added to the celebration, was having a fantastic band and a wonderful DJ, both of whom are good friends of ours. But those guys couldn’t have done such a brilliant job without the microphones, keyboards, electric guitars, laptops and amplifiers that there was an abundance of. And all of those items need all sorts of engineers like electrical, product design, software, mechanical, and acoustic to name just a few.

And last, but certainly by no means least, the reason we have such amazing photos, that will help us to preserve the memories for the rest of our lives and share them with others…like yourselves, is the photographer – the wonderful Paul Pickard. But, no matter how skilled Paul is, and believe me he really is, he wouldn’t have been able to do much without engineers having designed a camera for him. These days cameras are highly complex pieces of equipment with software requiring programming, lenses requiring precision manufacturing, robust bodies requiring accurate materials analysis, batteries and memory which are constantly being developed to increase usage whilst decreasing size and all of these things need engineers.

So whilst my thanks go out to all the wonderful people who helped make our wedding, like the tailor, the jeweller, the band, the drivers and the photographer, and of course our families and the guests, my thanks also go to all the hundreds of engineers behind the scenes. Without them our day would have been quieter, harder work, less glamorous and less well remembered. So thank-you all…


et cetera
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