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Why have an Assystem blog?
Our idea is something different. We want to put the spotlight on engineers – not to show off or combat prejudices against engineers, but to celebrate them. We want to recognize the importance of ingenious projects and the beauty of complex ideas as well as the impact they have on our societies.

We want a blog that makes engineers feel good, where they can come for inspiration, enjoyment and a breath of fresh air. Where they can enjoy themselves and share that with their community. We want a blog that inspires people to become engineers, that doesn’t talk about results but about impacts, not about processes but about the human adventure, not about techniques but about innovation. In a nutshell, we want a blog that shows how engineers are incredible and values them at their true worth. A blog that demonstrates how engineers are changing the world and are devising solutions for the major challenges of the future. So come on board!

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NASA’s taking nuclear energy into space

The conquest of space is more than ever at the centre of public attention, with projects like SpaceX and The Stealth Space Company, but who better than NASA to fulfil this dream that has existed for t...

Big Data Automation

It’s no secret that data is the lifeblood of more and more companies. While it brings many benefits for those who use it wisely, it creates just as many constraints for those who don’t. Ma...

Saudi, land of oil… and engineers

In Saudi, being an engineer is more than any profession. With “Saudi Vision 2030” plan to reduce Saudi Arabia’s dependence on oil and diversify its economy, Saudi engineers are becoming a rare c...

Being a woman engineer in the land of the Corcovado mountain

Happiness seems to be the watchword in the home of samba and the caipirinha. But the cool and carefree image that Brazilians present to the world is juxtaposed against a very different reality. The re...

Engineers – Eternal apprentices?

From steam locomotives to high-speed trains powered by hydrogen, from manual calculators to super-computers, from a one-dimensional view of building sites to augmented reality, the objects designed by...

Electric cars and energy transition – is there a glitch?

At the end of 2018, only 200,000 electric and hybrid vehicles were registered in France out of a total automobile fleet of around 40 million. But questions are now being asked due to recent sharp incr...

Being an engineer in the UK

So close to Europe yet isolated by seas, the UK has its own way of doing business. From the most obvious cultural differences to small tips that can make a difference, Fanny Fouin, a French engineer w...

A world tour of the latest rail innovations

While waiting for Hyperloop – the ultra-high-speed train dreamed up by the South African entrepreneur Elon Musk – rail sector companies haven’t given up on the race for innovation. Locomotives that ar...

Digitalised mobility – a turning point for engineers

Digital transformation is reshaping all modes of transport, from design through to use. The objective is to create smooth traffic flows, enhance user comfort and safety, anticipate maintenance and, ul...

What are the origins of nuclear energy?

In 2018, 10.3% of the world’s electricity needs were covered by nuclear power. The International Energy Agency has forecast that nuclear energy production will increase by around 50% between now and 2...

The Hyperloop – a new era for mobility

It’s 2060. Environmental concerns and high petrol prices have gradually turned people away from carbon transport systems, and high tech has picked up the baton. Dreamed up half a century earlier...

Are engineers has-beens when they hit 60?

At 61 years old, Claude Bernard doesn’t code and social media doesn’t do much for him. But he can run a marathon in three and a half hours, has moved house 32 times in 40 years, and agreed...

The datascientist: an identikit picture of a most wanted engineer

It’s one of the new professions emerging in the digital age. It’s also one of the most sought-after profiles in the market, in sectors as varied as finance, industry and healthcare. At the...

Quick & dirty vs gold-plated – that is the question for IT developers

What’s best – quick & dirty development or fine tuning every minor detail. In general, it’s all a question of timing and risk management. To understand the principles and outcomes of these two see...

The Grand Paris Express – Reinventing the Greater Paris transit system

Building four new underground (“Metro”) lines and extending two existing lines, laying 200 kilometres of extra tracks, creating 68 new stations and setting up seven technical centres – the...

Supersola - Voltaic Lego

If you miss playing with Lego and you’d like to save money on your electricity bill, Supersola is made for you! This Dutch start-up has won everyone over with its plug&play solar panel. As the eco...

5G is going to change the world! But what does that mean for engineers?

By Alexandre Colonna, founder of Maoré Mobile, the fourth telecom operator in Mayotte, and Léon, an engineer working for a major French telecom group.

New frontiers: When the universe inspires engineers

People have always been fascinated by the stars, the Moon, the Sun and the outer reaches of the universe. This fascination has inspired the world’s most brilliant minds to study them and design the te...

How digital tools are transforming the engineer's profession

The digital revolution is not only bringing changes to the first nuclear power stations that began to be constructed as from the mid-twentieth century, but is also significantly impacting the current ...

The Trans-Siberian Railway – no obstacle is insurmountable

The Trans-Siberian is the longest railway in the world. It has over 9,000 km of track – mostly built between 1891 and 1916 – and stretches across the enormous expanse of Russia, from Moscow to Vladivo...

Being a woman architect in Saudi Arabia

Fatimah AlQaisoum and Batool Al Mualem are both working as architectural designers at Assystem Radicon, Saudi Arabia. As such, they participate in commercial, residential and even governmental project...

Being a woman in the nuclear sector

Women, the future of the nuclear energy ? Specialised in project management, Anne-Sophie’s somewhat atypical career led to one of the most interesting positions: working on the Middle East’s first nuc...

Smart Office – The office of the future

How can we adapt working spaces to suit highly mobile workers who need the confidentiality and calm of a personal office as well as the stimulation and interaction of an open-space environment?

Life sciences: engineering in the feminine form?

Biology, cosmetics, pharmaceuticals – life sciences is a sector that has many engineers working on manufacturing, packaging and quality control products. It employs a lot more women than other industr...

Power from the people

Energy transition: politicians talk about it and ecologists dream of it. But for us citizens, are we supposed to just watch and wait? Now’s the time to move into action and many start-ups have underst...

Women engineers on the move

Women engineers and the transport jobs Like the building industry, the transport sector is undergoing deep-seated change to ensure a sustainable and mobile future, particularly for towns and cities. A...

Building and civil engineering – jobs for the boys?

Women in the construction industry The building and civil engineering (“BCE”) sector is both fascinating and tough, from design to construction to decommissioning. And it’s the same for b...

Being an Engineer in India

India is an emerging powerhouse that has become the world’s sixth largest economy. And to drive the country’s development even further, the government has made energy, infrastructure and technology it...

If I install a solar panel does it mean I’m green?

Solar energy : Impact of the environment Ever since the French physicist Edmond Becquerel discovered the photovoltaic effect in 1838, it has been possible to generate electricity from sunlight. The po...

On the trail of forgotten engineers

Have you ever heard of Mary Jackson, Mária Telkes, François Cavé or Marc Seguin? What inventions and feats of engineering lie behind the names of Fulgence Bienvenüe or Henri Édouard Tresca? Just like ...

Energy transition: the good and bad role models

When we hear about energy transition in the media, it’s often difficult to distinguish between what’s true and what’s false and to understand which changes can have a real impact on reduci...

Interview with Robert Plana – “Being a CTO in an engineering firm”

Having started out as a researcher, Robert Plana gradually moved towards more managerial roles in the public and private research sectors. After spending several years at Alstom and then General Elect...

Fictional engineers – geniuses or mad scientists?

Ever since the 19th century, literature, comic strips and movies have been filled with scientific characters who are either villains or heroes, mad or serious, solitary or sociable. Whether they are i...

Small Modular Reactors: a new approach to generating nuclear energy

Quicker to build, smaller and more modular, SMRs are an answer to the need for low- or medium-output zero-carbon energy generation in locations that can, at times, be remote. Reliability and safety ob...

What place will nuclear have in the energy mix by 2040?

Global warming: The fight against climate change The debates prior to the French government drawing up its multi-annual energy programme are now in full swing and both pro- and anti-nuclear energy lob...

Gender diversity – women in engineering

Women are a scarce resource in most engineering firms. So what has the industry done to make itself so unappealing to the female gender? It looks like the burden of history is still weighing on the en...

BIM: a building revolution

Innovation of digital technology; Building Information Modeling (BIM) technology is a revolutionary new solution for building stakeholders that improves building construction and job quality while low...

Electricity – the energy of the 21st century

Between now and at least 2050, the combination of high population growth, strong economic development, increased demand for foodstuffs, equipment and transport, and a boom in all forms of automation a...

Nuclear power: a crucial component of a carbon-free mix

Scenarios drawn up by Negawatt and the French Environment and Energy Management Agency (ADEME) estimate that by 2050 all of France’s electricity needs can be covered by renewables. However, thes...

Calling on engineers to combat global warming!

Combatting global warming requires citizens to rethink their lifestyles, businesses to alter their industrial processes, and politicians to set an example and pass legislation that encourages eco-frie...

Hard core nuclear safety

In 2017 we celebrated our company’s 50th birthday. The Assystem adventure started in the nuclear sector when the French State began to build the country’s fleet of nuclear power plants (NPPs) as well ...

Engineering schools – A breeding ground for invention

Engineering schools train hundreds of future engineers every year. In this article we delve into these unique schools and meet up with some of their impassioned engineers who are dedicated to learning...

How engineers can help the pharmaceutical industry

Life expectancy is increasing throughout the world, which is raising challenges for pharmaceutical companies. People now expect pharmas to provide ever-safer and more effective treatments to help them...

A status report on cyber-risks

With financial consequences estimated at an average $11.7 million, cyber-attacks are one of the principal risks facing today’s companies. Given our increasing dependency on digital technologies ...

PMO – an essential support for large-scale projects

All business and industry sectors – including pharmaceuticals, banking, defence, energy transport and civil engineering to name but a few – now rely on project management tools, methods and processes,...

Assystem Graduate Program

Whether it’s Nestlé, Auchan, Crédit Agricole, Orange, Coca-Cola, Total or Carrefour, all large companies need to have a high quality Graduate Program. The aim of these programs is to attract the best ...

Project Imagine

Enabling energy transition and the digital revolution is Assystem’s mission statement, and the Imagine programme is playing a central role in helping us turn this statement into action. The engineerin...

GAIA - Saving office plants

We’re always talking about smart robots, smart houses, smart cars, but now it’s the turn of the tired plant that sits on your desk, the one that doesn’t get any sunlight and is losing its leaves. Matt...

Cobotics - Too good to be true?

Here’s a new word for your innovations dictionary: ‘cobotics’ A neologism deriving from collaborative robotics, cobotics is designed to get the best out of both of the parties involved – t...

Design thinking - Experience the economy

In 1998, Joseph Pine said that the next competitive battleground for business would lie in staging experiences for customers. And 20 years later, he’s been proved right. Because after the period...

CRISPR – CAS9

Will we soon be able to see woolly mammoths at the zoo? According to Harvard University geneticist, George Church, it’s a possibility. He has announced that by crossing the DNA of a mammoth conserved ...

Citizen science - The people's nasa

Our solar system might have a ninth planet. How about discovering it yourself? This is what NASA is proposing by opening up online access to a huge quantity of celestial images for internauts to analy...

New user interfaces

Human-machine collaboration looks set to intensify over the coming years. But for two entities with different languages to collaborate they need effective communication interfaces – and that’s w...

Google's problem in india - Good morning India

In India, a third of the country’s smartphones run out of memory every day. And the mystery behind this surprising figure has only recently been solved – apparently it’s all down to politeness. ...

Yann Lecun - Not so artificial intelligence

“If no one asks me, I know what it is. If I wish to explain it to him who asks, I do not know”. These were Saint Augustine’s words about time but they could just as easily be mine about artificial int...

Home automation - The smart home

In this new era of ultra-connectivity and robotics the time has come for our homes to get on the bandwagon like the smartphone did a long time ago. Why? Because our homes have so many stand-alone devi...

Mixed Reality - Magic Reality

The people at Magic Leap are fund-raising magicians. They managed to raise $1.9 billion in the space of six years without launching a single product, a prototype or even any tangible details of their ...

Jugaad innovation - Frugal engineering

The economic environment has become increasingly unsettled and even for large corporations the future is uncertain. In order to survive, businesses need to innovate, but 50% of company leaders worldwi...

Xavier Duportet

If you imagine all biology researchers as mad geniuses in lab coats, then you’d be surprised by the biology engineer, Xavier Duportet. Aged 28, he was ranked in Forbes “30 under 30” list for Eur...

Esdtech – Educ-Up

If technology were a train, the French education system would be running behind it, trying to catch up. The education sector hangs on to its traditional and archaic methods despite the key role it sho...

Cedric Villani

With his floppy necktie and long hair, this mathematical genius certainly stands out in the French parliament. The man in question is Cédric Villiani, who was awarded the Fields Medal in 2010 and who ...

Self-Healing glass - The real serendipity

Very rarely, a major innovation can come about by accident or mistake. This phenomenon is called serendipity and has brought us one of the most revolutionary products of our time. Are we talking about...

M.a.DI – The house in a box

More than half of the world’s population now live in cities and the proportion is set to increase in coming years. This has many different consequences, not least of which is the fact that it takes yo...

Qarnot – Data warning

An immeasurable quantity of data is stored on line; from the cloud used by individuals to store their music to gigantic industrial databases, we are firmly in the Big Data era But even if it’s no long...

Konexio - Digital solutions for everyone

Our economy is in the throes of a digital revolution and this is having a negative impact on the job market. The people who are most at risk of unemployment have been unable to prepare for this change...

Net Neutrality

Remember the scandal of the telecom operators being pulled up for price fixing? Now the same players are involved in another controversy, but this time it’s about the Internet. Obama officially made t...

Smart cities: stop or more?

54% of our planet’s inhabitants currently live in towns or cities and by 2030, two thirds of the world’s population will be urban dwellers. This rising demography is proving a real test of...

Marie-Sophie Pawlak

If you think that engineering schools are full of geeks and only for men, you’ve got the kind of prejudices that Marie-Sophie Pawlak wants to get rid of. Marie-Sophie is an engineer by training and is...

Joël De Rosnay

What will the future bring? Only a handful of people have the answer to that and Joël Rosnay is one of them. In 1975 he impressively predicted today’s major trends, in his book Le Macroscope. And at n...

Cyberdyne - intelligent exoskeleton

Any genuine science fiction fan must have fantasized about having an exoskeleton like Iron Man that enables him to fly and become a technologically advanced superhero. Reality is less sexy but no less...

BRCK - Internet is everywhere

In today’s society, we take it for granted that we will have an Internet connection and would have difficulty living without it. Connection is the basis of communication and communication is progress....

Sophia (Hanson Robotics)

Saudi Arabia, 2017: a woman stands at the microphone, her head and lower arms uncovered, and without a male guardian by her side. You might think you are in a parallel universe. Or that there has been...

Local Motors – OLLI

3-D printing, industry 4.0, electric and driverless buses: this could be a list of the latest trends in early 2018, but it’s not. In fact, it’s a set of key words that describe Olli, the new minibus d...

Alexandre Cadain

What do AI, an art gallery in the trendy Marais district of Paris and the Hyperloop have in common? They’ve all come under the eye of Alexandre Cadain, a young French entrepreneur. Although at f...

Ready player one - Frightening future

In a world on the edge of chaos, the inhabitants find refuge in a worldwide virtual reality system called the OASIS. Welcome to 2045 and Steven Spielberg’s latest film, Ready Player One. This adaptati...

Body Hackers

You may already be familiar with Juan Enriquez’s position on the future relationship between people and robots. However, some people do more than just talk, they conduct experiments. Calling themselve...

Predpol - The real minority report

Those of you who have seen Minority Report have an idea of what predictive policing might look like. If you missed the movie, don’t worry, we’re going to explain. Predictive policing software is based...

PROTEI – Cleaning up the seas

It’s easy to understand why intellectual property is considered a fundamental right. After all, it’s normal to want to protect an idea or a concept and make money out of it. But is this “every man for...

Oasis Eco Resort - Dubai finally wakes up to ecology ?

2017 was the International Year of Sustainable Tourism for Development, but what did it change? Several initiatives were launched, for example by Air France which announced the creation of a dedicated...

Garage inventors – legend or reality?

1938 – Palo Alto, in California. William Hewlett and David Packard, two visionary engineers, set up a workshop in a simple garage backing onto David Packard’s house to work in peace and quiet on...

Juan Enriquez - Homo evolutis

Terminator, Robocop and Transformers are just three movie franchises that imagine a world where humans end up being controlled by robots. Scared? You shouldn’t be. Up to now, robots have performed bet...

Ecocapsule - The caravan of the future

When you see this 2.5-metre high egg-shaped structure, you’d be forgiven for thinking you were looking at a prototype survival pod for life on Mars. In fact, it’s intended for life on Earth, but not j...

The Greatest Engineers of all Time

Leonardo da Vinci (1452-1519), an Italian painter, sculptor and inventor It would be impossible to start this list without referring to Leonardo da Vinci. A universal genius par excellence, Leonardo d...

Robotmart - The connected online grocery store

Who hasn’t thought, when ordering a hamburger, that if it was just as easy to order fresh fruit and vegetables on line we really would adopt a healthier diet? The trouble is, finding really fresh, aff...

Spotlight on innovations for renewable energies

Within the energy transition process currently taking place, renewable energies have been identified as one of the main drivers of transformation. For example, in February 2018, renewables (excluding ...

Stories of the craziest projects of all time

Twenty thousand leagues under the sea For centuries, the idea of a vessel that could navigate underwater fed people’s imagination and scores of engineers have worked on submarine travel througho...

e-Tree Sologic - The 2.0 Tree

The Sologic e-Tree is an outstanding example of engineering inventiveness! The engineers working at Sologic, an Israeli start-up, looked to nature for inspiration in creating a local energy and connec...

Woodoo – WoodWhat ?

A young French engineer was helped by a secret agent to encrypt his computer and protect the material he’d invented, which is rot-proof, fire-resistant, strong enough to be used in the construction of...