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What Field Do These This Fall Under

  1. Apr 14, 2010 #1
    A friend of mine ask me what field of science Fly-by-wire control systems of aircraft/space craft falls under. I really didn't know this my self so it made me curious. He also said something about the computers in cars, and GPS.

    What are they under, computer science, engineering?
  2. jcsd
  3. Apr 14, 2010 #2


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    Mechanical Engineering or its subspecialty, Aerospace/Aeronautical Engineering

    Although you could argue that Computer Science/Mathematics may develop the algorithms to integrate the Fly-by-Wire with GPS, sensors and other controlls or weapons systems, it is still ultimately the MechE's domain.
  4. Apr 14, 2010 #3
    Ah, I see how mechanical engineering takes care of the aircraft and car question but I don't quite see how GPS is mechanical engineering.

    That makes me wonder, who builds computers and satellite computers? Electrical Engineers?
    Last edited: Apr 14, 2010
  5. Apr 14, 2010 #4


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    Well GPS is part of the system, its integrated by whatever means you chose the system to be designed, I am guessing either you have a computer with I/O DAQ for the Fly-by-Wire and serial or USB or Blutooth GPS input. The more advanced and old-school people may have TTL or something else going into their system. Then you have to worry about shielding from EMP if its a fighter jet, interference it may cause to other electronics, mechanical tests to see if the system can withstand the environmental stresses of temperature, humidity, pressure, electromagnetic interference, any possible short circuits that could ignite the wiring, any overload issues, etc.

    I'm sure a MechE could find something to spend time looking into.

    I'm not familiar with satellite computers. If you are referring to satellite communication systems then thats Electrical Engineering. If you are referring to motherboards, firmware writing, and peripheral accessories for computers, then thats still EE or Computer Engineering. Its mostly all EE for the hardware, and Computer Science for the software.
  6. Apr 14, 2010 #5
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