David Harvey PhD AWeldI has worked in welding metallurgy and welding engineering for over 60 years, whilst also being a specialist in arc welding process and more.
He talks us through his career in engineering, his experience being a Professional Member as well as his advice to his younger self, and more.
I am a specialist in metallurgy, arc welding process, and fabrication of various metals, including steels, stainless alloys, tooling materials, titanium, magnesium, cobalt and nickel super-alloys, and proprietary materials.
As well as working in the application of welding metallurgy, I am involved in welding engineering and filler metal selection as well as gas and steam turbine and aerospace metal joining, including MRO of expensive critical components.
Introduction to you and a career in engineering
Why did you choose a career in engineering?
My uncle was the Chief Metallurgist of British Rail and a founder member of the Institution of Metallurgist in 1947, and it was due to him that I became interested in engineering as a young schoolchild! I work with 650 alloys!
When did you join The Welding Institute?
I joined The Welding Institute in 1959 as a metallurgical apprentice at International Combustion Ltd in Derby.
Early Professional Membership
Why did you initially join The Welding Institute?
International Combustion Ltd designed and manufactured advanced power station pressure vessels; and welding technology was a vital aspect of manufacturing and site installation. I am also a Member of similar societies.
As one of The Welding Institute’s longest serving Members, what are one or two of your fondest memories from being a Member?
Branch committee memberships, member of the Aerospace Group, attending many seminars, having many friends and colleagues at TWI, presenting lectures, helping and inspiring and encouraging staff. Creating SMAW coated electrodes, flux-cored filler wire, submerged arc fluxes and a wide range of high purity GTAW filler alloys.
How would you say professional membership has helped you throughout your career?
It is a necessary link with fellow scientists for fellowship, identification with career progress, inspiration, cross-checking data, procedures and specifications. It has also provided me access to library services, with attending meetings with my peer group, and sharing enthusiasm with similar minded engineering folk with the understanding that the special knowledge benefits industry and universities. It is also a great asset for welders and their managers. It interfaces well with other learned societies.
What advice would you give to your younger self, beginning your career in engineering?
Continue to become a very significant benefit to the industry by solving important problems, especially when no other is capable of such activity. It is so satisfying to save countless millions of pounds for businesses by solving their critical fabrication issues, especially in advanced engineering such as gas turbine production and associated MRO requirements and also general aerospace, nuclear construction, military and defence activities (often against overseas competition). It is encouraging to be a national asset in wealth creation.
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