- Financial Project Controller
KDC are sourcing a Financial Project Controller to actively manage the financial situation of multiple Aerospace supply projects. KEY RESPONSIBILITIES: •Produce monthly financial reporting on project Key Performance Indicators comparing Actuals against Budget and Forecast [Sales, Margin, Cost, & Cash]. •Hold regular cost reviews with Work Package Managers to capture CTC e.g. Engineering, Procurement, etc. Take into account resourcing requirements. •Work alongside your projects to ensure on time financial milestone achievement & ensure the necessary process is followed. •Analysis of project actual costs, & correction of miss-bookings. •Quarterly amendments to the CDP Pool to reflect the latest project status after agreement with the UK Financial Controller / Prime Controllers and Business Unit Leaders. •Forecasting of project resourcing/manpower requirements by work package. •Key subcontractor financial milestone management. •Analysis of project key risks & opportunities and presentation to Controlling Business Partner. •Quarterly tracking of major project non-quality events for communication to senior Management. •Forecasting and management of project foreign currency requirements [EUR, USD, CAD]. •Ensure that the impacts of any project changes e.g. scope, schedule, etc. [on Sales, Margin, Cost, & Cash] are properly controlled and assist the Project Manager with creating Contract Change Notes / Change Proposals. •Work closely with the Finance team to support the consolidation of the overall program financials. •Participate in Project Control team process improvement activities. •Respond to adhoc requests and contribute to future process innovations. •To feedback to the team where positive added value contribution to the business can be enhanced and this job description and job spec can be updated. JOB/TECHNICAL KNOWLEDGE: •High MS Excel literacy. •Knowledge of SAP, Business Warehouse, Impact. •Financially aware with high business partnering acumen. WORKING ENVIRONMENT/INDUSTRY: •Project Based environment within Aerospace Industry. DESIRABLE REQUIRMENTS: •Experience from management accounting role within a project-based environment, CIMA or ACCA qualified or trainee. •Another European Language (French / German) would be advantageous •Demonstration of international work experience •Digitally aware and can demonstrate active professional engagement with media forumsRead more
- FEM Engineer
KDC are recruiting for one of our clients based out of Bristol, for an FEM Engineer within the aerospace industry. Project Description: A350XWB -900 & -1000 Step Changes This package of work is continued static/FEM support for the aircraft through major modifications Tasks are likely to include: o Assessment of structure due to modification driven by repairer enhancement of the airframe using ISAMI and other Airbus static methodologies o Airbus Stress Dossier compilation o FEM modification and interrogation o Loads processing and large scale data manipulation Key experiences and skills: -Strong engineering background - MEng, BEng or similar and 5+ years of industry experience. -Airbus experience within the field of Static Stress and FEM analysis -A350 experience preferred -Understanding of Airbus A1020 FEM Verification process -Experience of working to tight deadlines on projects. -Good Inter-personal and organizational skills -Eye for detail and good problem solver. -Quick learner and highly self-motivated. -Computer skills Microsoft Office and ISAMI, MathCAD, Patran/Nastran Advantageous skills: -Hyperworks -Python -VBA -Airbus stress signatory Feel free to reach out to us directly or send your CV to email@example.comRead more
- Stress Engineer
Are you a Static Stress Engineer looking for your next contract? Do you have experience using Isami? If so, we may have the right opportunity for you. Our global client based in the South West is looking for a number of engineers to join their A320 team. The A320 family is now undergoing a revolution with major developments of new variants, stress to cost and digitisation of product and process to achieve ramp up. The day to day duties of the role will involve: ·Static structural analysis activities with one of the A320 family Wing project engineering team. ·Creating Preliminary stress sheets in support of Design Reviews,, Justification stress dossiers in support of Certification, Modification or Structural Repair Manual , creating detailed FEMSPre sizing new or modified structure - advising Designers of stress needs ·Checking and validating others calculations (where experience permits) Ideal candidates should have the following skills and experience: ·5 Year's or more experience in an Engineering structural analysis role. ·Producing static stress calculations with minimal leadership or supervision ·Presenting those calculations in a concise and clear manner ·Achieving delivery to Time, Cost and Quality. ·Finding creative solutions to complex problems and low RF resolution ·Experience using the Airbus ISAMI suite of Stress Analysis Tools ·Experience of FEA Linear analysis and be aware of opportunities available with using Non Linear FEA ·Experience in airframe engineering and preferably on Wing structures ·The ability to listen, understand and communicate information ·Desire to work in an open and trusting environment. ·You will integrate and influence technical experts and specialists to achieve optimum technical and business solutions. For more information please call 01202596370Read more
- Quality Engineer - Lineside
Are you a Quality Engineer with Line Side experience? Are you looking for your next contract opportunity? If so, we may have the right role for you. Our global client based in the Chester area is looking for an experienced Quality Line Side Engineer to join their team on a contract basis. Job Purpose: • To support the evaluation, co-ordination and monitoring of achieved levels of conformity in the product, process and services provided by the Manufacturing Business. • To provide specialist Quality support and advice on drawings, parts, processes and support services, and to independently assure that Quality requirements have been met. • To ensure that staff are developed to attain the necessary knowledge / skills, performance and experience and that the tools, systems and procedures with which they work are developed to support efficient business processes. Major activities of Quality Line Side Engineer: • Assures that the Quality system is being adhered to within the business by the business through surveillance activities. • Assures that certification processes are consistently defined and applied within the business. • Co-ordination and leadership of reported quality / technical issues from business teams and customers, ensuring that appropriate corrective and preventative action is taken by the accountable function through use of multifunctional team activities and that the originator of the issue is informed. • To perform initial investigations (e.g. 8D, Retouches, PB's, CQLB's, RNCA's, NCA's) to assess probable cause, informing the accountable function and ensuring corrective and preventative action is taken within one shift, preventative action to be taken through problem solving analysis through multifunctional team activities. • To perform process conformation and surveillance activities on all the product and process related activities conducted by those individuals who have been granted certification privileges. • To conduct investigations to assess the probable cause of any deficiency noted during process conformation activities, informing the accountable function and ensuring corrective and preventative action is taken. • The facilitation of the use of Quality tools and techniques within the business area. • Provide support to the Quality Group Leader / Product Quality Manager for the day-to-day management of Quality Line Side Engineers. • Creation of customer protection and visual management of issues. • Data collection for conformance management teams. Ideal candidates should have the following skills and experience: • SAP Awareness and experience • Lean Manufacturing Tools and Techniques • Green/Black Belt • Previous Lineside experience required Please note you must have the right to work in the EU.Read more
- Software Developer
Are you a Software Developer looking for an exciting career in the development of space related applications and services? Do you want to work for a growing company based in high end facilities and join an experienced software team developing bespoke applications within the space domain, where you would be involved in all of the key software lifecycle aspects: requirements, design, development and test. KDC are working on an opportunity with one of our main clients based in Luton. Responsibilities: • Software design to implement the features / requirements compatible with the application and platform architecture. • Implementation of high-quality software source code • Unit and integration testing of the software • Linux/Windows development and scripting Qualifications / Experience: • Degree in relevant subject with Software Engineering modules or equivalent experience Essential Skills • C++ programming • User requirement analysis • Functional Testing • Descriptive design documentation • Embedded Systems Development • Web Applications Development • Database Design, Administration & SQL • Big Data Databases (e.g. HDFS, other non-SQL) • Big Data Processing & Frameworks (e.g. Hadoop) • Continuous integration/deployment environments (Jenkins) • Understanding of virtualisation / cloud based computing • Understanding of Containers and Orchestration (e.g. Docker/Kubernetes) • Resource Oriented Architecture Development (REST) Desirable Skills • Knowledge of Agile / Scrum development methodology If this position is something of interest, please send through your CV and call 01202 596366 to speak to Eugene.Read more
- Avionic Chief Engineer
Seeking Avionic Chief Engineer for Innovative Part 21J Design Organisation About You Ready to make your mark on a world leading company? This is the job for you. Coming from an avionics and electrical systems background you will have experience with interior lighting, IFE, flight and navigational systems. You will also have previous experience as a CVE signatory for avionics and electrical systems. Conversance with Part 21J and MAA DAOS approval is essential as is experience in leading and managing a team. About the Role You will be heading up the brand-new Cherbourg office in this permeant role working for a modern, creative design organisation. Reporting to the Head of Design, you'll be in control of the day to day leadership and management of the design office. As the CAA/EASA point of contact, you will be at the forefront of liaisons with external stakeholders. You'll also prepare, check and approve project design and certification documents and act as the MAA DAOS Avionic and Electrical Design signatory. About the Company Established in 1947 the company is a leading design and certification services company. The company provides a quality focused certification service to the civil and defence aerospace industry. Holding EASA Part 21J and UK MoD DAOS approvals, as well as maintaining continued airworthiness for over 60 of our company owned STCs. Your new office is in Cherbourg, a beautiful French port city. Parks, culture and dramatic coastline are all within easy reach. Next Steps I want to hear from you. Click apply now!Read more
- Project Assistant
Overview: The Project Coordinator is an integral member of the project team responsible for delivering engineering projects of varying size and complexity. The Project Coordinator is responsible for directing, organising and controlling project activities, under the direction of an Operations Manager (OM). Full training will be provided on the job. Key Responsibilities: • Attend client meetings and assist with determination of project requirements. • Assist the OM/Technical Leads in the creation and release of Project documentation including Proposals, Bid Reviews, Contract Reviews, Progress Reports and Delivery Acceptance Notes. • Attend weekly customer meetings and distribute minutes to all project team members. • Maintain and track progress of contractual documentation registers. • Effectively and accurately communicate relevant project information to the client and project teams on a weekly basis. • Ensure clients' needs are met in a timely and cost-effective manner. • Track & manage Change Notices. • Track the Quality system to ensure that processes are being adhered too. • Keep the OM and others informed about project status and issues that may impact client relations. • Ensure effective and open communication throughout the team and with stakeholders. Attributes: • Good attention to detail and diligent • Strong time keeping and organisation skills • Effective communication skills (both verbal and written) • Adaptable and quick learner • Good analytical skills • Ability to multi task • Very proficient in use of MS Office (Exel, Word, Powerpoint, Project) • A baseline understanding of project management techniques. Advantageous Skills: • Industry familiarity, Financial background, proficiency in MS Project, previous Project Coordination experience.Read more
- Senior Programme Coordinator
Senior Programme Coordinator An exciting position has arisen for a well organised and diligent individual with great interpersonal skills to support the Programme Management team in the development of a robust PMO function to support the development of an exciting new product from prototype into production. This is a great opportunity for someone looking to gain the experience to further their career towards Project Manager and Programme Management. We are looking for someone with experience supporting, administering and/or managing product development projects and has a sound understanding of project management methods, tools and practices. Ideally you will come from an Engineering background (e.g. Aerospace and Automotive) and have the ability to adapt to change within a programme. You will have intermediate to advanced skills in MS Project and MS Office (especially Excel), along with strong administrative skills with excellent attention to detail. The role: You will be accountable for: • Generating project status reports and dashboards • Capturing and analysing project metrics from both internal and external project members • Maintaining schedules (MS Project) • Maintaining project tools - action trackers, minutes of meetings library etc. • Supporting programme processes (Risk Management, Change Management, etc) • Following up on actions • Coordinating programme communications • Maintaining the Programme Management Plan (organisational charts, cost tables, etc.) • Contributing to Programme Management process & policy best practices.Read more
- Production Planner
Production Planner Our global client is looking for a production planner to join them in their goal of providing Market-leading products and services for every aspect of an aircraft's interior. Your role within the business would be to introduce new products from the design stage into manufacturing for the first time and optimise the repeatable process for continued manufacturing in future. This position would be fantastic for someone with strong problem-solving skills, experience with technical drawings and specifications, and the ability to deal with problems as they arise and adapt the manufacturing process to overcome these issues. In order to do this, you would: • Create bill of materials for new products, provide manufacturing information sheets and manufacturing specification data (in accordance with company standards) • Develop the most cost and time effective solutions while maintaining design quality and best manufacturing practices • Define suitable methods of manufacture and identify and implement required tooling and equipment • Create test specifications and manufacture of composite test samples & rework of current test parts. • Understand the industrial process to make informed Buy or make decisions. • Reduce waste as much as possible while maintaining quality. • Train employees on new process, applications, and manufacturing specification data. We're looking for someone with an understanding of: • Technical drawings, specifications and related documentation • A grasp of Composites, systems and processes to be able to conduct your duties • Strong communication skills, be mathematically competent and be capable of using computers and software such as MRP (Infor Evolution), MS Office (Excel) and various CAD viewing. • Maintain a technical interface and offer support and feedback between the Design, Programmes, Production, Purchasing and Quality departments • Lean practices to minimise works order and production stages, material usage etc. • Continuous manufacturing process improvement with a strong problem-solving ability. Don't hesitate to apply! Following your application we can provide more details. Keywords: Production, Planner, Manufacturing, Engineering, Aerospace, Composites, Optimisation, LeanRead more
- Cost Estimator Manufacturing
Our global client based in the South West is looking for a Cost Estimator Manufacturing to join their costing team. This is an opportunity for an estimator to work closely with the current team to supply estimates in support of the Brexit emergency support plan. As part of the UK costing team, you will be responsible for building cost estimates. The focus will be mainly on Wing for Recurring cost activities and Non-Recurring activities for all current and future programmes. The main activities will include: • Produce cost estimates for Wing Work packages against a set of criteria and assumptions, using and developing a variety of costing methodologies, tools and processes • Be accountable for the integrity and consistency of the cost estimates • Support the procurement negotiations After a first training period, the job holder will be autonomous in estimating and representing FCCAW in front of procurement and suppliers and the Brexit team. As well as using personal experience to estimate costs, the role will require analysis and understanding of previously captured costing data and how those metrics can be applied in the future costing activities. The successful candidate will demonstrate the following skills: • Good product knowledge • Knowledge of Jigs and Tools used for Wing manufacture • Knowledge of design and manufacturing processes for Wing WP • IT - Knowledge of design tools • IT - Knowledge of Production and design tools PDM-link, SAP) • Cost estimate experience is an advantage, but training will be given • Project management experience would be an advantage Please note, you must have the right to work in the EU.Read more
- Manufacturing Engineer (Permanent)
Seeking Manufacturing Engineer for World Leading Manufacturer of Advanced Composite Structures About You You come from an engineering or manufacturing background and have specific experience with composite and polymer materials. You'll be comfortable with 3D model based definition (ideally CATIA V5) and will have strong problem solving capabilities. Degree qualified (or with equivalent training) you will be able to confidently specify material requirements, define suitable methods of manufacture and implement tooling and equipment. About the Role This is a permanent role. You'll be working in both the factory and the office and travel requirements are minimal. Whilst you will report to the ENGINEERING MANAGER, you'll be trusted to carry out a range of manufacturing tasks autonomously. The role also requires you to manage technical communications with customers and vendors. About the Company The company is a world leading manufacturer of advanced composite structures for the aerospace industry and is successful and visible on the international stage. They are a leading supplier and have experience in supporting the world's most prestigious aerospace programs. The office is nestled in the rolling country hills of Somerset with dramatic coastlines, shopping and other amenities within easy reach. Next Steps I want to hear from you. Click apply now!Read more
- Senior Avionics Systems Engineer
Senior Avionics Systems Engineer An exciting opportunity has arisen for you to join our global client as a senior avionics systems engineer. Our client is the producer of one of the most successful civil aircraft ever manufactured in the UK. With over 50 years of experience continuously producing aircraft, our client wants you to provide technical support for the Military Technical Support Service contract in the area of avionics systems responsibility. Training is offered (as appropriate) to fulfil the requirements of the role. Your main tasks: • To ensure compliance with the FWMAS contract for Technical Support Service (SPMAP/001) to maximise performance on behalf of BN Defence. • Act as a Senior Engineer and a CVE to provide guidance and assistance to the Military TSS team. • Act as a Board and Design signature in an appropriate discipline. • To provide technical direction to the Mil TSS Team to obtain responses in a timely manner to any Technical Query (TQ) from FWMAS; in addition, provide signature to TQ response for Avionics Queries. • Review each UFRs received from FWMAS for acceptability and whether additional design data is required. If civil and/or military design data is required, then do not proceed with UFR and submit Task request to MoD. If UFR is acceptable and the response can be based upon existing civil design and where appropriate existing military design, then promulgate the UFR to the Mil TSS Technical Publication team for prosecution. • Liaise with BNA Design to ensure that the military design data set does not diverge from the civil aircraft standard, unless agreed in writing from BNA Design • Review and plan for incentivised' Tasks to ensure compliance with the output date. In particular, providing direction and review of core' team output. Desired Experience: • Degree / HND / HNC in related engineering subject • 5 GCSEs (or equivalent) at grade A* - C • Aerospace Design office and avionics design • Experience in dealing with MoD including MAA • Experience dealing with CAA / EASA • Shop floor / manufacturing Benefits of the role include 33 days holiday (inclusive of bank holidays), a contributory pension scheme, Eligibility to join the healthcare system (post-probation period) and free parking. Don't hesitate to apply! We can run through some more details about the role after receiving your application. Keywords: Systems, Engineer, Senior, Avionics, Training, Defence, MOD, AerospaceRead more
Aerospace and Defence
KDC Resource has been operating in the aerospace and defence sector since 2002. We work with the world’s leading defence and civil aerospace companies to source and place high quality permanent and contract talent. We understand organisations like these need the finest engineering talent in order to help them develop some of the most sophisticated technologies in the world. We are currently engaged in finding leading technical talent for projects – among others – that are linked to the national defence of the United Kingdom. Our specialist team have successfully supported our clients find leading talent for roles across: Part 21 J, Certification, Cabin Interiors, Design, Avionics Design, Structures, Electrical Design, Compliance Verification Engineer (CVE), Head of Design, Airworthiness and EASA. KDC Resource is actively working on similar roles requiring industry leading professionals to fulfil roles at all levels. Scroll down to learn more. Or if you’d like to partner with KDC to support your talent search then click here to learn more.View jobs
The private Space sector is relatively young. The decommissioning of the Space Shuttle Programme was an opportunity for private businesses to support NASA with its operations both in orbit and beyond. Elsewhere in the world organisations are pioneering new satellite technologies, unmanned probes and innovative new ways to combat space junk. KDC Resource are proud to be working with a number of these organisations providing highly skilled technical talent into Flight Dynamics, AOCS, Earth Observation, GNSS, Mission Operations, Ground Segment and Payload. Our specialist recruitment consultants are actively searching for industry leading professionals to fulfil roles at all levels including Systems Engineers, Payload Engineers, AOCS Engineers, Product Assurance Engineers, RF Engineers and Control Engineers. Or if you’d like to partner with KDC to support your talent search then click here to learn more.View jobs
Emerging and Disruptive Technologies
The world is always changing and that brings new opportunities and new innovations. At KDC Resource, our emerging and disruptive technologies team works with organisations that upset the status quo. Whether that’s how we travel or how we use technology to revolutionise mundane tasks. We have recruited for roles across the eVTOL, Urban Mobility, Electric Vehicle, Drone, Energy, Battery Technology, Autonomous Systems and Composite Structure markets. Including roles such as Battery Systems Engineers, Flight Control Law Engineers, AI Software Developers, Prototype Engineers, Autonomous System Engineers, and Safety and Reliability Engineers. Our specialist recruitment consultants are actively searching for industry leading professionals to fulfil roles at all levels. Or if you’d like to partner with KDC to support your talent search then click here to learn more.View jobs
Cybersecurity is one of the fastest growing industries in the world. Cyberattacks are becoming increasingly common and businesses of all sizes are struggling to muster a meaningful defence. There are genuine concerns that critical infrastructure could be targeted by hackers or by enemy states in event of a conflict. Which is why finding the best cyber security and technology specialists takes experts. We are proud to work with some of the market leaders in this vital industry to find top tier candidates to fulfil cybersecurity roles at every level. Roles we recruit for include: Penetration Testers, Ethical Hackers, Security Analysts, Cyber Security Architects, Software Engineers, Technical Project Managers, AI Engineers, Sales Managers and Cyber Account Executives. Our specialist recruitment consultants are actively searching for industry leading professionals to fulfil roles at all levels. Or if you’d like to partner with KDC to support your talent search then click here to learn more.View jobs
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Whether you’re looking for a contract or permanent position, we’re here to support you in your search. Upload your CV today and a member of the team will be in touch.
What we do
We work with industry leaders in aerospace, defence, space, emerging and disruptive technology and cyber security to source the best technical and engineering talent on the market.
Our specialist recruitment consultants are trained to find the right mix of skills, experience and personality to ensure the perfect placement for candidate and client.
Over 150,000 candidates trust us to manage and fulfil their career aspirations.
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How to Survive Starting a New Job
Starting a new job is an exciting experience. Whatever the reason for leaving your old role, you’re joining a new company with new challenges. It’s also an opportunity to build fresh relationships and advance your career in a way that, perhaps, may not have been possible where you were. Starting a new job is a bounty of opportunities that comes with a splendid new desk and shiny new business cards. On the other hand, new job is a steep learning curve of process, pecking orders and office politics. Making headway early on is important. As is building relationships and integrating yourself into the team. It does you no harm for everyone to feel like you are part of the furniture. Even if you’ve only been there 5 minutes. Here’s our best advice for starting (and surviving) a new job. Get to know your team Whether you’re leading the team or a member of a team, getting to know the people you’ll be counting daily is so important. All the evidence suggests that disruptions to a team dramatically impact performance, morale and increase turnover. Which, if you’re the new person, can be quite unsettling. Especially if you’ve only just remembered everyone’s names. Carefully observe the team dynamics. What roles do people assume and how do they conduct themselves? This will help you identify any potential flashpoints or issues that need addressing. Take as many opportunities as you can to learn about your team over your first couple of weeks – without being disruptive. Equally share anecdotes and insights into your life to establish that all important common ground or shared interests. This will help to build trust and make it easier for you to understand the role that everyone plays in the team. Both practically and socially. A tried and tested technique is the post work drink on your first day. This may not always be possible but either suggest it in advance to your hiring manager or as soon as you can on your first day. This gives those with childcare commitments or other arrangements time to move things around. However unlikely it may seem that your new colleagues would drop everything to go for a drink with you after work – remember this: they want to get to know you just as much as you want to get to know them. Finding a Sounding Board A new company usually means a deluge of new policies, procedures, processes and tasks. Plus, a new office, full of new faces and an uncertainty of where the closest photocopier (and toilet) is to your desk. Finding someone that you can bombard with questions is a useful stress reliever. It can feel intimidating – when you’re the new person – to ask questions. Especially ones that border on the silly. Truth be told – there’s no such thing as silly questions because (a) something is only obvious once you’ve been shown and (b) everyone was new once. So, find someone who you think will be supportive and understanding – like your line manager – and just unload. They would much rather you ask all the ‘silly questions’ now rather than find out you’ve been doing things wrong for 6 months. We do stress that importance of choosing the right person to ask for help. Avoid the person in the office who seems to delight in other people’s misfortune for a start. Set Goals Depending on the level you’re going in at you may be asked to put together a strategy – or at the very least a plan – for your first 100 days. That’s fine and to be expected. However, a coherent strategy takes time and implementing it doesn’t necessarily give you much of a steer on your job performance. Arrange with your line manager some achievable performance goals and training targets. Then hold regular (weekly at first) meetings to discuss how you’re doing. It will help you feel supported but also demonstrate the progress you’re making. If you’re drifting away from a specific target or you’re combing up against obstacles, then those regular keep in touch meetings will help you get back on track. Or allow your line manager to intervene on your behalf if someone or something in the organisation is being obstructive. Remember to include training goals as well as performance objectives. Your organisation should be supporting your development. For no other reason than it’ll help you do a better job in the long run. You never want to find yourself in a position where you can’t do the role because you haven’t had the training. Spot the marks on the carpet When anyone joins a business, they see the place with fresh eyes. They spot every mark on the carpet, every coffee ring on everyone’s desks and gaps in processes. Assuming you’re going into a safe and supportive environment, use your first few weeks to constructively identify where improvements in products, processes or services can be made. Timing is of course important, as is how you deliver the feedback. Laying into the company’s product offering on your first day isn’t the best way to make friends…or keep your job. However, making observations that are backed up with possible solutions demonstrates that you care about the business and want to add to it. Rather than tear it down. It’s also important that you choose whom you share these insights with carefully. Again, the avoid the overly negative people in favour of a line manager or team member you can trust. During this time you should be also looking to make your mark on any assignments or projects you have been assigned to. Now is the time to demonstrate your work ethic, knowledge, skills and enthusiasm. Basically, all the stuff the hiring manager saw in you during the interview process. Again, this is not about making waves but adding value and demonstrating that next level commitment that the higher ups love to see. Self-care Now for the one thing most people forget about when starting a new job. Start a new role – regardless of position, hierarchy, salary and everything else – is an anxious time. The overwhelming newness of everything can be quite draining. Especially as you’re likely working twice as hard in order to make a good impression. We highly recommend building some self-care into your first couple of weeks. Early nights, healthy dinners and balanced breakfasts. Avoid alcohol (apart from the first day drinks) as it’ll affect your work performance and you don’t want to be the person in the office who smells like stale booze. Also give yourself a little time to reflect after each day. What went well, what didn’t? Who in the office knows their stuff and who might need some training up? Giving yourself the head space to unravel your day helps prepare you for tomorrow and gives you vital perspective on challenges you faced. It also helps you formulate plans and even the beginnings of that strategy you need to work on. KDC are expert recruiters finding top technical and engineering talent to the aerospace, defence, emerging & disruptive technology, space and cyber security sectors. If you’re looking for a new role register your details with us today. Or if you have a requirement get in touch to discuss it with a member of the tem.
The Combustion Engine is Going the Way of the Dinosaurs
The combustion engine in its current form is an incredible feat of engineering. The synergy between mechanics, electrics and electronics is akin to the kind of symbiosis found in nature. Oh the irony. The automotive industry has worked tirelessly to squeeze every ounce of power out what is – essentially – a 160-year-old piece of technology. All the while trying to use as little fuel as possible in the process in an effort to stave off inevitable extinction. But despite this, the combustion engine will become a thing of the past within the next 100 years. It may happen sooner but with only 13 major governments pledging to ban the combustion engine entirely by 2030, there’s a lot of work to do. It’s hard to imagine a world without petrol and diesel powered cars. Roads being populated with electric vehicles will be like something out of science fiction. But, in reality, it’ll be decades before they disappear from the world’s roads, if not longer. Mainly because those bans are related to new cars. Which means petrol and diesel cars already on the road will stay there until at least 2050. But with just over 6% of the world’s nations committed to the ban, it is likely to be a lot longer. Then again, if the countries where car companies make the most money commit to banning new combustion engine cars, the manufacturers will have no choice but to fall in line. The Coming Revolution The move away from fossil fuels has been building for years. The legal maelstrom that currently surrounds the automotive and petrochemical industries suggests they knew about the damaging effects of fossil fuels for decades. They were just making as much profit as they could for as long as they could. Presumably hoping that some Star Trek style technology could reverse the damage to the environment. It also means they had plenty of time to prepare for the inevitable move away from fossil fuels. Not least amongst those moving is Volkswagen Group, who announced a few years ago that they would only produce electric vehicles by 2026, now just 7 years away. But this has come after the group has been gradually consolidating its offering to make it easier and cheaper to roll out electric versions of their prodigious range of vehicles. Afterall Volkswagen Group includes Audi, Skoda, Seat, Porsche, Lamborghini, Bentley, Scania, Ducati, and Bugatti. A commitment from them is big. Seriously big. Although many suspect disingenuous. Few can see Bugatti, Bentley, Porsche or Lamborghini going all electric any time soon. Mainly because the energy consumption would render performance cars essentially useless. Beyond the first 20 minutes at least. Meanwhile, Nissan, Kia, Hyundai, Renault and BMW have all produced at least one electric vehicle and despite the price tag, sales are buoyant. Not to mention the erratic rise of Tesla and its range of high-ticket cars and the ‘Tesla Semi’ slated for release in 2020. The trucking industry may well be where the battle for the environment is won or lost. Trucks alone account for 5% of the EU’s total CO2 emissions. Tesla claims its Semi can travel 600 miles on a single charge with the option of carrying additional Tesla batteries to keep the truck on the road for longer. Averaging around £130,000, it puts them in the ballpark of rival truck companies. However, some diesel trucks have a 2,000-mile range which rather blows Tesla’s claims out of the water. However, with truckers being limited by the number of hours they are legally allowed to drive for, a range of 2,000 miles is not as big a deal as it may seem. Should VW owned Scania decide to make the move to electric trucks in the near future (which is likely considering their recent electric bus unveiling), that market could get very competitive very quickly. Taking to the Skies There is a lot of new technology in the works, including self-driving cars, a raft of next gen electric vehicles boasting incredible range – and even new battery tech on the horizon. Micromobility will undeniably have a major impact on urban transport in densely populated areas. Companies like Jump and Swiftmile are working to take cars and motorbikes off roads, reducing congestion and emissions. Although its swapping one form of traffic for another. There is an inherent risk attached to flooding city streets with e-scooters and bikes, especially in countries that lack clear legislation in terms of how such vehicles should be used or the required level of competence. A cycle proficiency test won’t hold much weight if there’s a mass scooter crash in central London on a Monday morning. Micromobility will undoubtedly ease the problem. Fewer cars and lower emissions is a good thing, it just may not actually make navigating busy cities any easier or any safer. Even Elon Musk’s hyperloop technology will undoubtedly play a part in providing humanity with fast, clean transport. And may even hold the answer to international travel if the aerospace industry doesn’t come up with an alternative, clean engine. But several companies scattered around the world see the future of transportation to be in the air. Specifically, eVTOL automated aircraft that can take you where you want to do at the touch of a button. The market is starting to hot up as more and more companies make their pitch to investors, cities and – ultimately – consumers that their idea will work. With Ford, Airbus and Rolls Royce all investing heavily now too it's an area that will undoubtedly have a future in one form or another. And it’s no small thing – essentially changing the way we think about travel. The car has been part of our lives for generations. To the extent that any other mode of transport before it seems comically archaic. Despite the horse being the primary mode of transport for centuries. By comparison the internal combustion engine is a young upstart. However, if successful, the airspace around cities could be filled with small aircraft taking commuters and families wherever they need to go. This would not only reduce emissions and congestion but potentially change the way we live our lives. If a proportion of the population are going to fly everywhere then there is an argument for redesigning cities for buildings that can support that way of life. While it’s unlikely that eVOTL craft – be they piloted or automated – will replace wheeled vehicles any time soon, it’s a big step forward towards the kind of world usually seen in movies that have the word ‘star’ somewhere in the title. And like those movies, it’s going to be great fun watching the technology progress. The more likely outcome is a blend of new technology will solve the fossil fuel question. As great as electric vehicles are, they require charging which already taxes an under equipped power industry. At a time when power stations are being shut down. Renewable energy is trying to pick up the slack but there's no escaping the technology doesn't produce as much energy as a gas fired power plant. Scientists are working on fusion technology which - if successful - could be the answer to our prayers. But that's years away from a full functioning prototype, letalone building fusion reactors all over the world. That means we're going to need to some solutions other than sticking an 'e' in front of everything and replacing a heavy engine with lots of heavy batteries. KDC Resource are expert technical and engineering recruiters in the emerging and disruptive technology markets. If you’re looking for a new role and want to work with some of the most cutting-edge tech, submit your CV today. Or if you need helping finding the best talent to deliver your next project, we can help. 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Is Nuclear Propulsion the future of Space Exploration?
The 2015 Ridley Scott blockbuster The Martian starring Matt Damon depicted a near future in which we sent a team of scientists to determine the viability of colonising Mars. Needless to say, things go sideways and the team up stranding Damon’s character – Mark Watney – on the Red Planet. In amongst the themes of self-dependence, triumph of the human spirit and some cutting humour there was some seriously cool tech on display. Amongst which was the nuclear-powered craft that brought them down from their orbiting craft in the first place. Nuclear energy has been a sensitive subject for decades. Nuclear power stations are used all over the world and seen by many as a viable replacement to coal and nautral gas. However, others fear it as a barely understood technology and cite Chernobyl as all the evidence needed that humans are messing with forces that are best left alone. Regardless of how people feel, it seems the space agencies of the world are quite happy with nuclear power. Mainly because they’re already using it and have been since 1970. The reason being that spacecraft operating towards the outer edges of our solar system can’t get enough power from solar cells. So instead they use radioactive material to power electrical systems. However, the likes of NASA and the ESA have other ideas. Going Nuclear Deep space exploration has a lot of challenges attached to it that we need to overcome in order to make it a viable human endeavour. Radiation shielding is a major issue as outer space is awash with background radiation that can prove fatal if exposure reaches high enough levels. Lack of gravity can also cause bone decalcification and muscle atrophy. But by far one of the biggest headaches is how to sustain propulsion on deep space missions. Fuel is both heavy and volatile and – as Mark Watney says in the Martian: NASA hates fire. Because of the whole “fire makes everybody die in space” thing. NASA has a point. Fuel also runs out and leaves very little room to manoeuvre if anything goes wrong. When you think about the challenges involved in just sending humans to the moon, they are increased by an order of magnitude greater the further from Earth you get. So, using a nuclear propulsion system – that doesn’t require fuel – would be both safer and more viable. According to the ESA, the simplest form of nuclear propulsion would be to pass hydrogen propellant over the core of a standard, if light weight, nuclear reactor. The propellant would then leave the reactor through a nozzle much like a standard rocket. Granted this is still using a fuel of sorts but hydrogen is far more efficient, produces far more thrust and – providing we can crack hydrogen collector technology – is abundant in space. It’s also a far safer alternative to the Cold War era Orion Drive. Which essentially uses surplus nuclear bombs as a form of forward propulsion. They produce 111 times more thrust than the modern design and the perfect solution providing you don’t mind leaving a radioactive death wake behind you. Image copyright Joe Bergeron Meanwhile, NASA is developing the Kilopower reactor – a simple and inexpensive reactor that could provide significant amount of power to future spacecraft. Using Stirling engines (circa 1816) that can convert the heat from the reactor into motion – the Kilopower reactor can produce far more energy from its uranium alloy core than a standard RTG. In addition to the spacecrafts main systems, the Kilopower has enough output to power electronic propulsion systems. The Alternatives NASA may not like fire, but a reactor breach in space will be just as bad. If not worse. However, there are alternatives being developed too. Including a very Star Wars-esque Ion Drive. If they don’t call the test Craft a TIE Fighter, they’re not having enough fun at work. The X3 ion drive is a Hall-effect thruster. It works by accelerating a propellenat (xenon) by electric and magnetic fields. You can watch a video about the X3 below: The magnetic field limits electrons' axial motion and then use them to ionize propellant, efficiently accelerating the ions to produce thrust, and neutralize the ions in the plume. It’s safer and far more fuel efficient than chemical rockets. Ion thrusters have been used on satellites for years with great success but currently lack sufficient thrust to deliver crewed missions. The X3 in its current state of development lacks the required thrust too but it’s also still in a prototype state. Engineers involved with the project are confident that they can significantly increase the energy output of the prototype in order to make a full scale drive a viable option. Beyond the X3 there’s not a lot of other options out there. The EM Drive – discovered by accident – is looking increasingly like a fake. Or at least the positive propulsion tests were false positives due to the thermal expansion of the copper cone used. According to the laws of physics the EM Drive shouldn’t work anyway, but it provided a form of propellant free propulsion that could have transformed the way we ply the void. It may yet be proven to work – which would be huge – but the likelihood is it won’t. The best we can hope for – at least for the time being – is a form of propulsion that uses a fuel that is both abundant and efficient. Cracking the means to harvest gaseous fuels like hydrogen and xenon, from space may be the key for long distance space exploration – at least in the short term. Otherwise we’ll be permanently limited by fuel capacity, consumption and a tiny margin for error that could be the difference between success and death by fire. Which would make NASA very unhappy. KDC Resource are a leading technical recruiter in the space sector. 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Brexit and Part21J
Tune into any UK news channel or broadcast and it’ll be all but impossible to avoid something about Brexit. Now 75 days (at time of writing) past the original deadline to leave the EU, the nation still wallows in political deadlock while businesses try to protect themselves against a No Deal Brexit. Something parliament voted to avoid at all costs. Although they have also rejected the only deal on the table (three times and counting) so it’s hard to see which direction we go next. Hence the deadlock. Regardless of the political debate, the uncertainty is hurting industries up and down the country, aerospace being no exception with a 3.9% drop in output during 2018. The UK aerospace industry represents roughly £35 billion in revenue and employs over 120,000 people. Any threat of a No Deal Brexit is more than enough to make the industry nervous. And with good reason. Why No Deal would be bad for trade Amidst the threat of multinationals to move their European headquarters away from the UK and the ensuing mass redundancies, the UK aerospace industry would be all but crippled should the we leave without a deal. The reason being it’ll be harder to import materials and export goods. What use to take minutes to move through a border can now take hours or days. The cost to the industry could in the billions. But that’s the tip of the Brexit iceberg. EU membership provides us with a number of trade agreements and tariffs that that makes it easier and cheaper to import raw materials and provides access to technology and engineering resources. It also keeps the supply chain moving which helps the UK and other EU members maintain a competitive edge. Crashing out of the EU with no deal would mean we revert to WTO rules. This may not seem that big a deal but when you do the research there is one country in the world (excluding territories and protectorates of other nations) who trades solely on WTO rules. Which is the country of Mauritania. A West African nation roughly twice the size of the UK, Mauritania has a population of 4.4 million people, a GDP 0.2% of that of the UK and roughly 17% of the population live in slavery. Although under WTO rules, it does benefit from a degree of aid and preferential treatment from blocs like the EU, which is standard treatment for developing nations. A status the UK cannot claim. WTO rules would mean tariffs on exports into the EU, driving prices up and eroding profits and our competitive edge. But this is before non-tariff barriers are imposed. WTO non-tariff barriers are impediments to trade that don’t directly increase prices but can often lead to prices increases anyway as it increases operational costs. For example - any trading body, like Europe or the US could demand certification for goods originating from outside their borders. Whereas this may not be necessary when trading within the EU or under an EU trade agreement. Although UK aerospace manufacturers get their products certified, those certifications will no longer benefit from being recognised in the EU or as part of EU agreements. Therefore they have to go through a varification process or be recertified by the trading body in order to be sold. This is further complicated by the fact that safety standards and quality regulations used by the UK, that were accepted by the EU, could now be rejected. But the WTO rules are a narrow set of guidelines and does not grant access to the EU’s single aviation market. Unless the manufacturers relocate their head offices to an EU country. Which brings us back to the risk of mass redundancies. What this means for Part21J Considering Part 21J is the regulation regarding aircraft design and the certification of aircraft products, parts and appliances, any no deal scenario would put that part of the industry into disarray. The saving grace is that all current authorised certificates for products, parts and appliances will still be valid in the event of leaving the EU without a deal. This means – at least – we can still deal with the Europe and companies like Airbus don’t have any logistical issues in terms of moving components over borders. However, those same certifications don’t have to be honoured outside of the EU. As mentioned before, other countries could simply choose to no longer recognise them, making those components all but impossible to sell to the wider market. But that doesn’t cover any new certifications. While the UK Civil Aviation Authority may grant certifications, they won’t be recognised anywhere else. Or at least – not under EU trade agreements and all the benefits associated with trading under them. Under WTO rules any government may choose to validate (or not) certifications as they see fit. As a result, Bombardier, Rolls-Royce and Cobham—and more than 200 other companies in the sector—have applied to have their parts regulated by an EU member so they can continue to sell their parts in Europe. Many fear that this will be the precursor to those industries moving their operations out of the UK entirely. CEO of Airbus, Tom Enders, commented in an interview that while the aerospace multinational cannot immediately pick up its operations and move them, the business would be forced to redirect future investments elsewhere. He noted that there are plenty of countries would love to build wings for Airbus aircraft if it was no longer viable to do so in the UK. Whatever the coming weeks and months reveal for the UK’s future relationship with the EU and the trade agreements that follow, it’s bound to make a lot of people very nervous. Although – in almost open defiance of the uncertainty – the aerospace industry continues to do business and continues to innovate. It remains to be seen how much more output shrinks in 2019 compared to 2018 but if the shrinkage continues at the same rate, that’s a £2.8 billion loss of revenue across the industry in 2 years. Compounded by shrinking profits and the UK aerospace industry could be in for a tough time ahead. If you're in the aerospace industry and you're looking for a new role register your details with us today. If you're looking for support in your talent search then get in touch and a member of the team will be happy to discuss your requirements.