Industrial visits are considered a great practical method of teaching, they help students understand things practically through observing, shop floor working methods and improves awareness about industrial technologies. This trip was organised by Dr David Love (Course Director in the School Of Built Environment, Engineering And Computing), Mr Duncan Folley (Principal Lecturer in Robotics and Electronic and Electrical Engineering), and Global Moulds and Assembly Engineer, Mr John Templeman, from Unilever. We were able to more closely associate the practical value of learning theoretical concepts like 6 Sigma, 5S, Kanban and Kaizen in the industry setting, but more importantly to understand the Occupational Health and Safety implemented in industry which we were very enthusiastic to learn and made for a really educational trip.
The main objective of organising this industrial trip was to gain a brief idea about what the requirements are from Unilever and how LBU students could assist them with the monitoring and performance of injection moulding machines used to produce a variety of plastic caps, predominantly for personal care items.
Students learnt the principles of product design for manufacturing and assembly, saw various types of injection moulding machines producing small parts and observed the Mechatronics and Control System playing a key role in assembling them to form a useful end product.
To summarise, this trip, which resulted in a positive attitude for all of us towards project implementation, guided us in the right direction towards the project research and management, clearing all doubts about technical parameters required by Unilever and how to implement and develop a prototype.