For much of this year it's felt as though normal life is on hold.
Indeed, as the scale of the pandemic became clear back in April we on The Engineer wondered what impact the crisis might have on the climate of innovation and technology development that's at the heart of our coverage. Would there be anything to write about in the worrying months ahead? Would the well of innovation run dry as engineering organisations across the economy battened down the hatches and entered survival mode?
The answer to this question plays out across the pages of our latest issue. And whilst there's no doubt that many areas of the manufacturing economy are facing profound challenges it's also clear that - as so often throughout our society's industrial history - a time of crisis has been a spur for innovation, whether it's through the adoption of new technologies that can help address the operational challenges posed by the pandemic; or the exploration of emerging fields that could deliver a competitive edge in the years ahead.
This month's digital issue is also the first on a new and improved platform. Readers can now toggle between the traditional page-turner format and a more friendly-on-the-eye page view, whilst our advertisers and commercial partners can enjoy the benefits of greater visibility and clearer links and other calls to action. We hope you enjoy the new format.
INSIDE THIS ISSUE
- Beirut Blast: News analysis on the role that engineers are playing in helping to get Beirut back on its feet after this summer's tragic accident.
- Viewpoint: NPL's Dr Gareth Hinds on how batteries and hydrogen should be seen as complementary not competitive
- Talking Point: Why is the UK slow off the mark with a fully functioning track and trace app for COVID-19?
- Interview: Frazer-Nash Consultancy MD Neil McDougall on scenario planning, building resilience and reinvigorating UK manufacturing
- 5G Manufacturing: Expert panelists from across industry discuss the transformative benefits of 5G technology for manufacturing
- Renewable Energy : How the UK's abandoned coal mines are being repurposed for green energy projects
- Vital Capacity: How medical devices firm Penlon found itself at the heart of the UK's push for COVID-19 ventilators