Meet our Editor: Karl-Heinrich Grote and Hamid Hefazi

Karl-Heinrich Grote and Hamid Hefaz © Springer

A new edition of the Springer Handbook of Mechanical Engineering, a trusted reference for professional engineers and those to be, recently published. In this interview the book’s editors Karl-Heinrich Grote and Hamid Hefazi share their view on the significance and impact of mechanical engineering on the future of this planet.


Mechanical engineering shapes the world around us: the cars we drive, the products we use, the machines that make modern life easier. But is mechanical engineering still an important research topic?

Hamid Hefazi: Absolutely! Mechanical Engineering is one of the most foundational engineering disciplines, which integrates core engineering sciences with other fields such as design theories, computer sciences, modern manufacturing techniques, and experimentation, into a highly dynamic interdisciplinary field. 

What, in your opinion, has been the most significant advancement of the recent (last 10) years in this field and why?

Karl-Heinrich Grote: Mechanical Engineers have contributed to a lot of products, which have changed our life and will impact the life of future generations positively by providing ways of alternative energy production, carbon-reduced or zero-carbon transportation, improved health care devices, newly engineered farming equipment to ensure adequate food supply. Communication devices ….

Hamid Hefazi: And not to forget the impact of advancements in computing as well as new electronics, remote sensing, advanced diagnostics and AI technologies.

What are the biggest challenge for the field still ahead?

Hamid Hefazi: As the scope of the mechanical engineering discipline expands rapidly, educating the new scientists and practitioners that possess all of the necessary skills to meet the demands of the field is a serious challenge.

Why did you decide to pursue a career in the field?
Hamid Hefazi:
Mechanical Engineering represents a good balance between theory and practical skills such as design, creativity, experimentation, manufacturing skills etc. This balance was very appealing to me.


How would you describe the experience of editing the book? Was there a personal highlight? 

Hamid Hefazi: The wide range of expertise of the contributing authors, solidified my appreciation of the discipline.  The highlight certainly was the publication of the handbook, when you realize that all of the hard work that has been put in this project, by so many has come to fruition.  
Karl-Heinrich Grote:  This book is the culmination of my long-lasting cooperation with Springer and many auf the authors.  What had started at the professional level and cooperation on this handbook and other books, like the German-language Dubbel, grew into real friendships for many years to come.   

Final question: For whom is this book a “must-read”?

Karl-Heinrich Grote: Today one can find information from various, often unknown sources commonly available and distributed on the internet. It is important to be able to rely on verified knowledge from renown experts in the field.
Hamid Hefazi: Practicing engineers can benefit from a lot of data in this handbook, many of which are hard to find in other references. The mathematics, mechanics and the material sections are excellent resources for senior level and graduate students. The handbook can also provide valuable insight into various areas of mechanical engineering, not only to technical managers, but also to non-technical managers and company leadership.


Further information:

Springer Handbook of Mechanical Engineering