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Mechatronics or Mechanical Engineering

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Hi everyone,

I have a few questions about these 2 engineering courses. I really want to be specialised in both but obviously it may be too difficult and very time consuming so I have to choose 1. So I did some research on both of these and people had different opinions. Can someone briefly explain the differences, and if I can study mechatronics in mechanical engineering. 

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Not sure if this varies by school, but my university has both and they are kinda different.

 

Mechanical is engineering for anything that moves. It's incredibly versatile and an important factor in manufacturing, design, automotive, medical devices, etc. They learn a lot of physics and CAD skills.

Mechatronics is the integration of mechanical, electrical and software engineering. You typically think of robots or Iron Man suits, but really a mechatronics engineer can work in any industry that a mechanical, electrical or software engineer can work in. Normally people specialize in one aspect and the others just complement that knowledge. The benefit is that you would understand how everything works together when building or designing something.

 

Some schools offer a minor or specialization in mechatronics that you can add to a mechanical degree. It's not too much extra work but you would know more about electrical and software than a typical mechanical engineer. Otherwise, see if you can take electrical classes as a mechanical engineering student to build that knowledge yourself

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It depends on what you want to 'design'. Designing a circuit board is an electrical engineering job, a luxury car designer might be a mechanical engineer, and someone making a powered exoskeleton for paralyzed patients might be a mechatronics engineer. Normally it doesn't matter, since mechanical and mechatronics both cover 3D computer design and understand how to apply physics to design

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