The Bosch Rexroth Challenge is a tailored course for The JCB Academy Sixth Form engineering learners’ unit on hydraulics. The course is aimed at developing their skills in hydraulic engineering; exploring aspects of control, hydraulics and sensor technology. Included is an onsite factory tour, a series of practical exercises using Bosch Rexroth training rigs, and a visit to the London Eye to gain insights into the hydraulic systems and sensors used on the iconic landmark.
As a part of the unit on hydraulics, The JCB Academy Sixth Form engineering learners visit Bosch Rexroth, in St Neots, and the Coca-Cola London Eye. The learners get access to the London Eye during the maintenance times, after usual service has closed.
One of our learners reflects on their experience:
What did you think of the Bosch Rexroth learning?
The Bosch learning experience was great as we were not just told the information; we got to see first-hand how the systems worked. We used their test rigs to simulate how fluid would travel through a circuit and the implications of the circuit being connected incorrectly. We had also learnt about how fluid moves and that it takes the easiest path with the least resistance. This was shown using a demonstration of syringes and a plastic tube, and this allowed us see how applying force moves the fluid from one syringe to another syringe. Overall they used various resources and learning techniques that greatly helped us to understand more about these hydraulic systems.
What was the experience like at the London Eye?
The London Eye experience was amazing as we got VIP access on it and this allowed us to receive exclusive access on how the London Eye works. We got to see the hydraulic pumps, actuators and circuits, which are used to operate the London Eye and this allowed us to see how each component is involved in the circuit. Also there wasn’t anyone else accept our group, therefore we got the opportunity to stop the London eye various times, to allow us to see how the they clamp the tyres to the rim of the Eye and how they use 6 tonnes of pressure to clamp it into place. Overall, it was a great experience and the fact that we had the chance to go onto it in reverse, made it all that better.
What did you learn over the course unit?
During our visit to Bosch Rexroth, we had learnt a great amount about hydraulic circuits and how they worked. We also learned more about pressure and Pascal’s law; this is one of the fundamentals of any hydraulic circuit. Maintenance was another section that was covered, how it was integrated in a hydraulic system schedule and the implications if it wasn’t. Furthermore, we learnt the symbols and circuit diagrams that are used on actual hydraulic circuit diagrams and how engineers read and understand how the system works.
How will it help you in your engineering diploma?
This information and knowledge that we gained throughout the course will enable us to complete our Engineering assignments. It will also allowed us understand why these systems are important and how engineering application are operated and how force and pressure is generated. Most modern engineering systems operate using a hydraulic based systems and it gave us a great insight into how these work and how they operate.
How did you find the support and teaching from Bosch representative Jim Mallin?
Jim Mallin is the Bosch engineer that has been coming to the Academy regularly to give presentations and distributing information to us. This allowed us to have a more developed knowledge on hydraulics and fluid systems, and how they operate. His support and guidance on this was exemplary and he was extremely helpful give step by step analysis on these systems and how they operate. His teaching was very clear and concise, and he did this by using his vast knowledge and experience to deliver his sessions to a very high standard.
What was the highlight from the London Eye visit?
The highlight of the London Eye trip for me was getting VIP access to the London Eye and experiencing the great views of London at night. Also getting the free time, before getting on the London Eye, to go around the Southbank of London and the surrounding areas, which meant we had freedom to do what we wanted to.