Difference Between Mechanical & Electrical Engineering

Mechanical vs Electrical Engineering

Electrical and mechanical engineering are two distinct streams within the broad field of engineering, which also encompasses disciplines such as computer, telecommunication, civil, mining, and information technology. Students who have completed their 10+2 and are interested in pursuing engineering often find themselves confused between these two streams as they want to choose a discipline that offers better career prospects. This article examines the differences between mechanical and electrical engineering to help clarify the distinctions for readers.

Mechanical Engineering

This is one of the oldest branches of engineering, alongside civil engineering. It is a wide-ranging subject with applications in almost all industries, including automobiles, ships, airplanes, robotics, and many others. The medical world also heavily relies on mechanical engineering for the creation of medical devices. Mechanical engineers are often pictured wearing helmets and working inside plants or on outdoor projects, giving the impression that they work like laborers in industries. However, this perception is not accurate, as mechanical engineers spend most of their time in air-conditioned rooms behind computers, designing machines and improving the efficiency of existing machines and tools.

Students studying mechanical engineering learn about thermodynamics, fluid flow, machine design, structural analysis, material science, and more. However, mechanical engineering is not limited to these basic concepts; today, a mechanical engineer is required to work in various industries such as transport, aviation, biomechanics, shipping, biotechnology, and others.

Electrical Engineering

As its name suggests, electrical engineering focuses on the study of electricity, as well as its distribution and transmission. Students study power generation systems, transmission and distribution problems, and motor control. This field of engineering developed after the invention of electricity and the establishment of laws of electricity by Michael Faraday. The primary goal of electrical engineers is to make more efficient use of electricity to produce energy. To achieve this, students must study electrons, electromagnetic waves, circuits, programming, signals, solid states, and more. There is also significant overlap between electrical engineering and electronics engineering.

Key Takeaways

  • Mechanical engineering is more concerned with machines and their efficiency, while electrical engineering focuses on electricity and power generation systems.
  • Mechanical engineering is less abstract since students can see what they are studying, whereas electrical engineering is more abstract and deals with unseen waves.
  • Mechanical engineering is an older branch of engineering than electrical engineering, which evolved rapidly after the invention of electricity and the development of its laws by Michael Faraday.
Maria Nguyen
Maria Nguyen
Maria Nguyen is a talented writer with a flair for developing captivating content in a range of formats. Her commitment to thorough research and producing top-notch material has contributed to over 4 years of professional writing and editing experience. Outside of work, Maria finds pleasure in solitary activities and immersing herself in nature. Her introspective nature and passion for self-reflection inspire her creativity. She believes that spending time alone and observing the natural world can provide valuable insights and foster personal growth, broadening her perspective as a writer.


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