Systems engineering techniques are used in complex projects: spacecraft design, computer chip design, robotics, software integration, and bridge building. Systems engineering uses a host of tools that include modeling and simulation, requirements analysis and scheduling to manage complexity.
The Ford Motor Company's factory at Willow Run utilised Production Engineering principles to achieve record mass production of the B-24 Liberator military aircraft during World War II.
QFD House of Quality for Enterprise Product Development Processes
A set of six-axis robots used for welding.
The International Space Station is an example of a very complex system requiring Systems Engineering.
Ford assembly line, 1913.
The scope of systems engineering activities
KUKA industrial robots being used at a bakery for food production
CAD model and CNC machined part
Mohr's circle, a common tool to study stresses in a mechanical element
A CAD model of a mechanical double seal
Training FMS with learning robot SCORBOT-ER 4u, workbench CNC mill and CNC lathe
A typical FMS system
Close-up view of a friction stir weld tack tool

It overlaps technical and human-centered disciplines such as industrial engineering, process systems engineering, mechanical engineering, manufacturing engineering, production engineering, control engineering, software engineering, electrical engineering, cybernetics, aerospace engineering, organizational studies, civil engineering and project management.

- Systems engineering

Manufacturing engineering is considered to be a subdiscipline of industrial engineering/systems engineering and has very strong overlaps with mechanical engineering.

- Manufacturing engineering
Systems engineering techniques are used in complex projects: spacecraft design, computer chip design, robotics, software integration, and bridge building. Systems engineering uses a host of tools that include modeling and simulation, requirements analysis and scheduling to manage complexity.

3 related topics

Alpha

Industrial engineers in a factory.

Industrial engineering

Engineering profession that is concerned with the optimization of complex processes, systems, or organizations by developing, improving and implementing integrated systems of people, money, knowledge, information and equipment.

Engineering profession that is concerned with the optimization of complex processes, systems, or organizations by developing, improving and implementing integrated systems of people, money, knowledge, information and equipment.

Industrial engineers in a factory.
Watt's steam engine (Technical University of Madrid)

Depending on the sub-specialties involved, industrial engineering may also overlap with, operations research, systems engineering, manufacturing engineering, production engineering, supply chain engineering, management science, management engineering, financial engineering, ergonomics or human factors engineering, safety engineering, logistics engineering or others, depending on the viewpoint or motives of the user.

Engineering management

Application of the practice of management to the practice of engineering.

Application of the practice of management to the practice of engineering.

Systems engineering is an interdisciplinary field of engineering and engineering management that focuses on how to design and manage complex systems over their life cycles.

Examples of where engineering management consulting might be used include developing and leading a company wide business transformation initiative, or designing and implementing a new product development process, designing and implementing a manufacturing engineering process, including an automated assembly workstation.

The InSight lander with solar panels deployed in a cleanroom

Engineering

Use of scientific principles to design and build machines, structures, and other items, including bridges, tunnels, roads, vehicles, and buildings.

Use of scientific principles to design and build machines, structures, and other items, including bridges, tunnels, roads, vehicles, and buildings.

The InSight lander with solar panels deployed in a cleanroom
The steam engine, the major driver in the Industrial Revolution, underscores the importance of engineering in modern history. This beam engine is on display in the Technical University of Madrid.
Relief map of the Citadel of Lille, designed in 1668 by Vauban, the foremost military engineer of his age.
The Ancient Romans built aqueducts to bring a steady supply of clean and fresh water to cities and towns in the empire.
A water-powered mine hoist used for raising ore, ca. 1556
The application of the steam engine allowed coke to be substituted for charcoal in iron making, lowering the cost of iron, which provided engineers with a new material for building bridges. This bridge was made of cast iron, which was soon displaced by less brittle wrought iron as a structural material
Jumbo Jet
Offshore platform, Gulf of Mexico
The solar furnace at Odeillo in the Pyrénées-Orientales in France can reach temperatures up to 3500 C
Hoover Dam
Electric motor
Design of a turbine requires collaboration of engineers from many fields, as the system involves mechanical, electro-magnetic and chemical processes. The blades, rotor and stator as well as the steam cycle all need to be carefully designed and optimized.
A drawing for a booster engine for steam locomotives. Engineering is applied to design, with emphasis on function and the utilization of mathematics and science.
A computer simulation of high velocity air flow around a Space Shuttle orbiter during re-entry. Solutions to the flow require modelling of the combined effects of fluid flow and the heat equations.
Graphic representation of a minute fraction of the WWW, demonstrating hyperlinks
Robotic Kismet can produce a range of facial expressions.
Radar, GPS, lidar, ... are all combined to provide proper navigation and obstacle avoidance (vehicle developed for 2007 DARPA Urban Challenge)
Engineers, scientists and technicians at work on target positioner inside National Ignition Facility (NIF) target chamber
The International Space Station is used to conduct science experiments in space
A 3 tesla clinical MRI scanner.
Genetically engineered mice expressing green fluorescent protein, which glows green under blue light. The central mouse is wild-type.
Leonardo da Vinci, seen here in a self-portrait, has been described as the epitome of the artist/engineer. He is also known for his studies on human anatomy and physiology.

Other engineering fields are manufacturing engineering, acoustical engineering, corrosion engineering, instrumentation and control, aerospace, automotive, computer, electronic, information engineering, petroleum, environmental, systems, audio, software, architectural, agricultural, biosystems, biomedical, geological, textile, industrial, materials, and nuclear engineering.