MACH seminar programme combines star power, sector analysis and skills

The MACH 2018 seminar programme promises an informative mix of keynotes, lectures, discussion panels and sector analysis, with some big names appearing alongside the industry experts.


Kicking off on Monday 9 April, two of the week’s star attractions will help get the event underway with a bang. Ben Ainsley, the most successful sailor in Olympic history, will speak at the opening ceremony (10.30). Now the team principal at Land Rover BAR (Ben Ainslie Racing), the four-time gold medallist can be expected to provide insight about the role of technology in the team’s America’s Cup efforts. Ainslie is followed in the afternoon (14.00) by Bloodhound pilot Andy Green, who will be giving an update on the supersonic car’s progress.


Tuesday’s centrepiece is a British Standards Institution (BSI) discussion panel exploring the impact of robotics and autonomous systems on manufacturing (11.15). Chaired by BSI’s head of market development, Dan Parker, the panel will feature LDRA’s Andrew Banks, Drone Major Group CEO Robert Garbett, Microsoft’s Ruptesh Pattanayak and Stephen Cameron from Oxford University. Later in the day (13.00), Stephen Ringler, head of future business at the Satellite Applications Catapult, will give an overview of the UK space sector and the opportunities for advanced engineering.

Day 3 of the seminar programme features a full morning (10-13.30) of news from the additive manufacturing sector, with multiple speakers addressing the audience. After lunch (14.00), BAE Systems’ manufacturing director David Holmes will be looking at technology trends in military aircraft manufacture. The session will explore how demand for solutions in the military context can drive innovation in the technology, workforce and systems of the engineering and manufacturing sector. Wednesday afternoon (15.30) also features a session on designing, building and using the world’s biggest 3D metal printer.


Thursday (11.15) sees another BSI panel session, this one asking how we can create digitised supply chains in manufacturing. Contributors are set to include Hugh Boyes from Bodvoc, John Ahmet Erkoyuncu from Digital Service Engineering, Renishaw’s Jonathan Porter and Hennik Group’s Steven Barr. In the afternoon (16.30-18.00), Microsoft will be hosting a session in the main theatre. Details are light, but attendees can expect its Hololens augmented reality technology to feature.

With MACH drawing to a close, Friday sees a reduced seminar programme. Pick of the bunch is the midday session Apprentices for Manufacturing: Developing your Workforce. The talk will discuss how tailored apprenticeships and training can help to further develop skills and create a culture of continuous improvement in the manufacturing workforce. It will also discuss how large employers can use the Apprenticeship Levy effectively to create tangible financial benefits and generate best return on investment.