Lecturer’s PhD Research Focuses on Factories of the Future
Lecturer Dr Shaniel Davrajh, who graduated with a PhD in Mechanical Engineering, described the achievement as a ‘process of handling doubt’, while admitting it was not an easy task. He says the excellent support structure he had during his studies helped him pull through.
‘I have always been a practical person who loved solving problems, irrespective of their nature,’ said Davrajh. ‘Mechanical Engineering is the broadest field of Engineering and its application has always fascinated me. I wanted to gain a deeper understanding of this field and chose to pursue postgraduate degrees.’
Davrajh said his degrees had forced his thinking capacity to evolve to a much more abstract level than industry would have required from him.
Davrajh’s research, supervised by Professor Glen Bright and Professor Riaan Stopforth, examined the evolution of quality requirements for Factories of the Future (FOF), as a system of customers and manufacturers operating over the same set space, as opposed to previously distinct spaces. ‘Customers will require more input into a product design and will therefore have a direct effect on the layout of a manufacturing system,’ said Davrajh. ‘Manufacturers need to gain market share by giving customers exactly what they want whilst enabling feasible production of components.’
The deliverables of Davrajh’s research were tools used to determine what features needed inspection, namely, the inspection equipment, the optimal allocation of the inspection equipment, and the frequency of inspection within a FOF. ‘These tools can be implemented by a manufacturer in defending their market share by providing high quality products whilst keeping profit erosion to a minimum,’ he said.
Many people served as role models for Davrajh during his studies, including his parents and professors.
He advised aspiring mechanical engineers, to never give up: ‘Realise that it is you and only you who can control your path in life,’ he said. ‘Take responsibility for this path. If you want to be an engineer then behave like one.’
Asked about his future plans, he said: ‘I want to increase my perception and push my potential to the highest level that is possible for me, no matter where I am.’