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  • Subject area(s): Engineering
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  • Published on: 7th September 2019
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Let us see about Safe exit

It is almost impossible to built a completely safe product or one that will never fail. The best one can do into assume that

(i)When a product fails it will fail safely

(ii)The product can be absconded safely

(iii)The ever can safely escape the product.

These conditions are considered as “safe exit”.

Here we shall see about the aspects of engineering experimentation

*Experimental control.

*Informed consent.

*Conclusive remarks (knowledge gained).

Let us discuss the features of Engineering Experimentation

(i)Design calculations.

(ii)Exact properties of raw materials used.

(iii)Constancy of materials processing and fabrication.

(iv)Nature of working of final product.

Let us see about informal Consent

❖'It is known that there is always a strong human interface in the use of the engineering experiments’ result; and also the beneficiaries are invariably humans. Therefore engineering experiments are also viewed as part with medical experiments, as both experiments are performed on humans.

❖'When a medicine or an engineering product is to be tested on a person, then the moral and legal rights is to get ‘informed consent’ from him. In other words, the experimenters whose experiments involve human subjects have moral and legal obligations to inform about all the relevant facts about the experiments to the person who participates in experiments.

❖'Informed consent consists of two main elements : knowledge and voluntarism.

Here let us see the reason for engineering projects viewed as experiments

i.There are many aspects of engineering that makes it appropriate to view engineering projects as experiments. The three important aspects are as follows:

•Engineering projects, like the standard experiments are carried out in partial uncertainties.

The uncertainties may include uncertainties in the:

(i)design calculation

(ii)exact properties of raw materials used

(iii)constancy of material processing and fabrication, and

(iv)nature of working of final product.

•The final outcomes of engineering projects are also generally uncertain like those of other experiments.

For example, a nuclear reactor may reveal unexpected problems that endanger the surrounding people, some products such as high heels shoes, chapels, cosmetic items may cause some side effects to the users, and who knows, the users of cell phone may be exposed to some unidentified harms in future.

•Similar to standard experiments, engineering experiments also require thorough knowledge about the products at the Pre-production and post-production stages.

Thus engineering, like any other experimentation, requires constant monitoring, alertness, and vigil on the part of the engineers at every stage of the project.

Let us discuss the comparison of engineering experiments with standard experiments.

Contrasts with standard experiments: Engineering experiments differ from standard experiments.

1.Experimental Control.

•Experimental control is the most important difference between engineering and other standard experiments.

•In standard experiments, experimental control involves selecting members for two different groups randomly.

•In engineering experiments, usually there is no control groups. Sometimes the control group is used only when the project is limited to lab-orating experimentation.

2.Informed Consent.

It is known that there is always a strong human interface in the use of the engineering experiments, results and also the beneficiaries are invariably humans. Therefore engineering experiments are also viewed as part with medical experiments, as both experiments are performed as humans.

Informed consent consists of two main elevator.

(1)Knowledge: The human subject (the person who participate in experiments) should be given all the information to make a reasonable decision.

(2)Voluntarism: The human subjects should show their willingness to be a human model voluntarily.

3.2 Engineers as responsible Experimenters

Let us discuss about “Engineers as Responsible Experimenters”

There are four characteristic features of morality responsible engineers, from the perspective of engineering as said experimentation.


*Comprehensive perspective




It means commitment to line according to certain values. It implies consciousness. The primary duty of responsible engineers is to protect the safety of human subjects and respect their right of consent.

Comprehensive Perspective:

The morally responsible engineers should have constant awareness of the experimental nature of the project, forecasting of its possible side effects and a decent effort to monitor them. The engineers act as responsible agents.


The morally responsible engineers are the one who are personally motivated to hence a dedicated involvement in all aspects of a project.

When there is a threat for engineers moral autonomy, then engineers can look for moral support from their professional societies and other outside organizations.


The engineers should be accountable for the results of their project. The accountability refers to the general tendency of being willing to submit one’s actions to any type of moral routing and be responsive to other assessments.

Let us see about challenger case study

Abstract: Challenge disaster was due to failure of the solid rocket booster O-rings to seat properly allowed hot combustion gases to seat from the side of booster and burn through to the external fuel tank.

The failure of the O-ring was attributed to several factors, including faulty design of the solid rocket boasters, insufficient low temperature testing of the O-ring material and the joints that the O-ring scaled and back of communication between different levels of NASA management.

Purpose of O-rings:

*O-rings is to prevent hot combustion gases from escaping from the inside of the motor.

*To provide a barrier between the rubber O rings and the combustion gases, a heat resistant putty is applied to the inner section of the joint prior to assembly.

Launch Delays:

*The first delay was due to weather front expected to move into the area, bringing rain and cold temperatures.

*The second delay was caused by a defective micro switch in the hatch locking mechanism and by problems in removing the hatch handle.

*Almost half of the shuttle flight had experienced O-ring erosion in the booster field joints.

Engineering Design:

The design changes implemented in challenger are,

*Dimensional tolerances of the metal joint were tightened.

*The O-ring diameter was increased, and its dimensional tolerance were tightened.

*The used of the shine mentioned above was introduced.

The night before Launch: Engineer proposed that cold weather would exaggerate the problems of joint rotation and delayed O-ring seating but NA§A management decided to approve the boosters for launch despite the fact that the predicted launch temperature was outside of their operational specifications.

The Launch: During night, temperature dropped to low as 18°F, in order to keep water pipes in the launch platform from freezing, safety showers and fine hoses had been turned on. Note that safety limitations on low temperature launching had to be warned and authorized by key personnel several time during final count down. Challenger experienced the violent wind shear even encountered on a shuttle mission. The glossy oxides formed during bum that scaled the field joint burned through the external fuel tank.


*The importance of an engineer’s responsibility to public welfare.

*No matter how far removed from the public an engineer may think they are, all actions have potential impact.

Let us see about the standardization and also discuss the reason why industries welcome the concept of standards.

It is the process of defining and applying conditions required to ensure that a given range of requirements can be easily met with minimum changes in an economical and reproducible manner by the latest technique.

Standards Facilitate:


(ii)Accuracy in measurement

(iii)Base of handling

(iv)Prevention of harms

(v)Decreased production costs

(vi)Quality products.

Standards are also prescribed as parts of laws and official regulations.

•Types of standards:

The various types of standards and their purposes with some examples, by Mike Martin and Ronald Schinzinger, are presented in Table.

Table: Types of Standards and their Purposes



Selected Examples

Uniformity of physical properties and functions

Accuracy in measurement, interchangeability, ease of handling

Standards of weights, screw thread dimensions, standard time, film size.

Safety and reliability

Prevention of injury, death, and loss of income or property

National electric code, boiler code, methods of handling toxic wastes

Quality of product

Fair value for price

Plywood grades, lamp life

Quality of personnel and service

Competence in carrying out tasks

Accreditation of schools, professional licenses

Use of accepted procedures

Sound design, ease of communications

Drawing symbols, test procedures


Freedom for interference

Highway lane markings, radio frequency bands

Benefits of Standards:

From Table the following three central benefits of standards can be realized.

1.Standards help the manufacturers, the clients, and the public.

2.Standards maintain a steady and balanced competition among industries by reducing down the demands for certain popular name brands.

3.Standards ensure a measure of quality and hence facilitate more realistic trade-off decisions.

Negative Aspects of Standards:

•Standards may reduce choice for customers because of reduced variety.

•Excessive standardization of operations and procedure may reduce the initiative and interests of workers.

•Sometimes manufacturers, trade unions, exporters and importers impose unnecessarily changes in the provisions on standards achieving their self-centered goals.

3.3 Codes of Ethics

Here we shall discuss about the codes of Ethics with the advantages and disadvantages

*The primary aspect of codes of ethics is to provide the basic frame work for ethical judgment.

*They are referred as codes of conduct agreed up standards for professional conduct.

*The codes of ethics express the ethical principles and standards in a coherent, comprehensive and accessible manner.

*It defines the roles and responsibilities of profession.

*It helps the professional to apply moral and ethical principles to specific situations.

*These code are based on fine canons. They are,

Principle of ethics-integrity


Individual responsibilities

Professional responsibilities

Human concerns.


*It provides inspiration and guidance.

*It support for responsible conduct.

*It educates and promote the mutual understanding.

*It contributes a positive public image of the profession.

*It protects the status quot and promotes the business interest.


*It has basic guidelines restricted to general and vague wordings/phases.

*It often have internal conflicts which may results in moral dilemmas.

*It cannot serve as final moral authority for professional conduct.

Let us see the roles of code of ethics



*Support for responsible conduct.

*Deterring and disciplining unethical professional conduct.

*Education and promotion of mutual understanding.

*Protecting the status quot.

*Promoting business interests through restraint of trade.

Proposals for Promoting Ethics:

•Engineering societies should act as the form for debating what should be in a professional code of ethics.

•By establishing awards for engineers who exhibit commendable ethical conduct.

•By assisting and protecting engineers who have been discharged.

•Engineering societies can establish ‘ethics helplines’.

•By helping to educate the public about new technologies.

•Engineering societies can also promote the discussion and understanding of engineering ethics by depicting in the application of their codes.

Let us discuss about the ethics codes discipline among the engineering’s


❖'Ethical codes provide a positive inspiration for the professionals to exercise their obligations effectively.

❖'These codes inspire the engineers to apply moral principles under the various conflicting situations.


❖'The ethical codes provide guidelines for achieving the obligations of professionals.

❖'These codes also provide specific guidelines, which tell how to apply the code to the unique situations.


❖'The ethical codes offer positive and potential support to engineers to perform their duties in ethical manner.

❖'At times, the codes can serve as level support for those engineers who are tangled in professional obligations and conflicts.

4.Deterrence and Discipline

❖'The ethical codes can be used for deterring and dispelling unethical professional conduct.

❖'These codes are also considered as the formal basis for investigating unethical conduct.

5.Education and Mutual Understanding

❖'The ethical codes can be used in educational institutions and other places for emphasizing the importance of moral issues and values.

❖'They are also useful to encourage a shared understanding among professionals, the public an government organizations concerning the moral responsibilities of engineers.

6.Contributing to the Profession’s Public Image

❖'The ethical codes can confer a positive image to the public of an ethically committed profession.

❖'The codes enable the engineers to serve the public more effectively.

7.Protecting the Status Quot

❖'The codes institute ethical conventions. These ethical conventions can promote a minimum, acceptable level of ethical conduct.

❖'The codes can also suppress the dispute within the profession.

8.Promoting Business Interests

❖'The codes of ethics promote business interests through restraint of trade.

❖'They help in facilitating morally feasible business dealings to the professionals.

Let us discuss about the codes of Ethics of Engineers:

•The perspective of engineering as social experimentation provides some useful clues in prioritizing and ranking the various functions of the ethical codes.

•The supportive function of engineering codes is viewed as the primary important function. Because the supportive function of engineering codes enable the engineers to express their views freely, especially about safety to those affected by engineering projects.

•The disciplinary function of engineering codes is recognized as the secondary important function. Because, this function is essential in engineering as it ensures all clear and enforceable laws and rules.

•The guidance, inspirational, and educational functions of engineering codes are also important. Because they promote mutual understanding among those affected by them.

•The functions of protecting the status quot and promoting only business interests in violation of free competitions should be avoided altogether.

Thus it should be kept in mind that codes are only a small part of engineering ethics. Also codes are not sacred write and should always be open to critical examination. The codes should be applied with caution, keeping in view their limitations.

3.4 A Balanced Outlook on Law

Let us discuss about “a Balanced outlook on Law”

A Balanced Outlook on Law:It emphasis the necessity of law and regulation and their limitations in governing engineering practice.

In order to live, work and play together in harmony as a society, there must be a balance between individual needs and desires against collective needs and desires.

Only ethical conduct can provide such a balance.

So the codes must be enforced with the help of laws. One of the Example is as follows

Babylon’s Building Code: (1758 B.C.)

• This code was made by Hammurabi, king of Babylon.

• He formed a code for builders of his time and all the builders were forced to follow the code by law

“If a builder has built a house for a man and has not made his work sound, and the house which he has built was fallen down and so caused the death of the householder, that builder shall be put to death.

• If it causes the death of the house holder’s son, they shall put that builder’s son to death.

• If it causes the death of the house holder’s slave, he shall give slave to the householder.

• If it destroys property he shall replace anything it has destroyed; and because he has not made the house sound which he has built and it has fallen down, he shall rebuild the house which has fallen down from his own property.

• If a builder has built a house for a man and does not make his work perfect and the wall bulges, that builder shall put that wall in to sound condition at his own cost”.

Let us see about the industrial Standards

It is the process of defining and applying conditions required to ensure that a given range of requirements can be easily met with minimum changes in an economical and reproducible manner by the latest technique.

Standard Facilitate:


*Accuracy in measurement.

*Ease of handling.

*Prevention of harms.

*Decreased production costs.

*Quality products.

Benefits of Standards:Three central benefits of standards can be realized.

*Standards help the manufacturers, the clients and the public.

*Standards maintain a steady and balanced competition among industries by reducing down the demands.

*Standards ensure a measure of quality and hence facilitate more realistic trade-off decisions.

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