Working with Europe’s No 1 engineering company

Monday 10 April 2017

The latest automation technology will be available to students at Bedford College courtesy of Europe’s No 1 for engineering, Siemens.

A training package of industrial level Programmable Logic Controllers (PLC) and associated software has been donated by the company, the CEO of which is a former Bedford College student.


Geoff standing centre with Bedford College staff

Used in all forms of modern manufacturing these controllers automate production sequences, by linking sensors to motors, actuators and control diagnostics .  Maintenance and alterations to automation sequences are made through a simple but powerful programming interface.

“Most modern factories use PLCs,” explained Siemens Product Specialist Geoff Mather, during a day’s training delivered to college engineering staff.

“It will give trainees the ability to operate the very latest industrial level equipment.”

The new PLCs will diversify the automation teaching delivered to students, including Higher Education courses at the new Advanced Engineering Centre which is being built on the Cauldwell campus of Bedford College. This centre is in addition to the existing engineering workshops on the site and a specialist 16+ apprenticeship unit in Brunel Road. Bedford College is the only centre in the UK offering an apprenticeship in engineering which meets the new Government levy standards. This is in Mechatronics, the combination of mechanical engineering and electronics is a specialised training required by the Dunstable-based “Vauxhall” business.