1. Pertaining to, governed by, or in accordance with, mechanics, or the laws of motion; pertaining to the quantitative relations of force and matter on a macroscopic scale, as distinguished from mental, vital, chemical, electrical, electronic, atomic etc.; as, mechanical principles; a mechanical theory; especially, using only the interactions of solid parts against each other; as mechanical brakes, in contrast to hydraulic brakes.
2. Of or pertaining to a machine or to machinery or tools; made or formed by a machine or with tools; as, mechanical precision; mechanical products.
We have also divers mechanical arts. --Bacon.
3. Done as if by a machine; uninfluenced by will or emotion; proceeding automatically, or by habit, without special intention or reflection; as, mechanical singing; mechanical verses; mechanical service.
4. Made and operated by interaction of forces without a directing intelligence; as, a mechanical universe.
5. Obtained by trial, by measurements, etc.; approximate; empirical. See the 2d Note under Geometric.
Mechanical effect, effective power; useful work exerted, as by a machine, in a definite time.
Mechanical engineering. See the Note under Engineering.
Mechanical maneuvers Mil., the application of mechanical appliances to the mounting, dismounting, and moving of artillery. --Farrow.
Mechanical philosophy, the principles of mechanics applied to the investigation of physical phenomena.
Mechanical powers, certain simple instruments, such as the lever and its modifications (the wheel and axle and the pulley), the inclined plane with its modifications (the screw and the wedge), which convert a small force acting through a great space into a great force acting through a small space, or vice versa, and are used separately or in combination.
Mechanical solution Math., a solution of a problem by any art or contrivance not strictly geometrical, as by means of the ruler and compasses, or other instruments.
En·gi·neer·ing, n. Originally, the art of managing engines; in its modern and extended sense, the art and science by which the properties of matter are made useful to man, whether in structures, machines, chemical substances, or living organisms; the occupation and work of an engineer. In the modern sense, the application of mathematics or systematic knowledge beyond the routine skills of practise, for the design of any complex system which performs useful functions, may be considered as engineering, including such abstract tasks as designing software (software engineering).
Note: ☞ In a comprehensive sense, engineering includes architecture as a mechanical art, in distinction from architecture as a fine art. It was formerly divided into military engineering, which is the art of designing and constructing offensive and defensive works, and civil engineering, in a broad sense, as relating to other kinds of public works, machinery, etc.
Civil engineering, in modern usage, is strictly the art of planning, laying out, and constructing fixed public works, such as railroads, highways, canals, aqueducts, water works, bridges, lighthouses, docks, embankments, breakwaters, dams, tunnels, etc.
Mechanical engineering relates to machinery, such as steam engines, machine tools, mill work, etc.
Mining engineering deals with the excavation and working of mines, and the extraction of metals from their ores, etc. Engineering is further divided into steam engineering, gas engineering, agricultural engineering, topographical engineering, electrical engineering, etc.
n : the branch of engineering that deals with the design and
construction and operation of machinery