Warning over shortage of engineering graduates
The UK needs to increase by as much as 50% the number of science, technology, engineering and maths (Stem) graduates it is creating, a report says. The study, by the Royal Academy of Engineering, says 100,000 Stem graduates are needed a year just to maintain the status quo. It argues the UK is already slipping down the international innovation league tables. The UK has dropped to eighth globally in the number of US patents registered.
BAE and EADS bosses plead for support for merger
The chief executives of Britain and Europe‘s largest defence and aerospace firms have issued a plea for political support for their proposed £28bn merger. Ian King, chief executive of BAE Systems, and Tom Enders, his EADS counterpart, said the merger would create a global company that would be more than the sum of its parts. The approval of the British, French and German governments is needed. The US is understood to be taking a close interest because of BAE’s involvement in sensitive US defence projects.
Liquid air ‘offers energy storage hope’
Turning air into liquid may offer a solution to one of the great challenges in engineering – how to store energy. The Institution of Mechanical Engineers says liquid air can compete with batteries and hydrogen to store excess energy generated from renewables. IMechE says “wrong-time” electricity generated by wind farms at night can be used to chill air to a cryogenic state at a distant location. When demand increases, the air can be warmed to drive a turbine.
Chemistry teachers encouraged with new scholarships
The Department for Education has announced the creation of around 130 new scholarships in chemistry to attract graduates into teaching the subject. Under the programme, which is being led by the Royal Society of Chemistry (RSC), any graduate with a 2.1 or first-class degree will be eligible to apply for one of the £20,000 scholarships on a chemistry Initial Teacher Training (ITT) course. The RSC will work with teaching practice experts to award the prizes to candidates who display in-depth subject knowledge, enthusiasm for chemistry and potential to teach.