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7 Mobile Apps for Engineers

7 Mobile Apps for Engineers

Apps, like computer programs and tools, continue to evolve. Mobile apps such as these help engineers do their jobs when they are not in the office.
Working on the go has, for better or worse, become the norm for many professionals, including engineers. Mobile devices help provide basic information engineers might need within easy reach.

Here are a few apps that mechanical engineers might consider reaching for to complete calculations, view notes, or learn new skills.


Decades ago, it used to be that an engineer needed a physical drafting board to get design plans on the docket. Autodesk’s AutoCAD has long been a game-changer in being able to create digital equivalents. The software is available through a mobile app for both IoS and Android operating systems. Pull up DWG format files for sketching on the go, for checking specs on ongoing projects, or for final sign-off on collaborative projects. The mobile app allows users to work with Autodesk documents and other popular cloud-based file applications like Google Drive and Microsoft OneDrive. Mechanical, electrical, and plumbing (MEP) engineers, HVAC professionals, and construction and civil engineers are just a few of the many who can take advantage of this mobile app.

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This iOS-only app includes comprehensive information about nuts and bolts that engineers might need for a variety of projects. The database has over 93 different screw types and accommodates both U.S. and metric measurement systems. For both systems, information displayed includes, among others, standard dimensions, clearance hole sizes, tap information, material strength, shear force and clamp force capacities, recommended torque values, and head markings display. Users have the ability to show or hide material grades in the interface display, so they only see relevant information. It’s like having a handheld ready essential handbook.

Engineering Tools: Mechanical

Although currently made for Android devices only and not free to use, this app makes life easier for mechanical engineers by facilitating calculations on a variety of subjects for a variety of projects. These include detailed calculations for heat loss, natural gas installation, and ventilation. In hydraulic and pneumatic projects, the app can perform piston cylinder calculations and pump and accumulator calculations. Engineers can also convert between hundreds of units in 26 different categories and access a total of 15 mechanical property values for 73 materials.

Engineering Codes & Standards

Complying with codes and standards need not be a painful exercise, especially if they’re handy for easy reference and can indicate which apps and standards should be used in which situations. Applicable to mechanical, civil, and electrical engineers, among others, this Android-only app covers parts and components for a variety of applications. Some prominent mechanical, electrical, and piping components covered include pipes and related fittings, pumps, compressors, valves, flanges, heat exchangers, steam and gas turbines, tanks, line blanks, motors, generators, fans, blowers, and more.

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Engineering Unit Converter

Available for both Android and iOS operating systems, this app delivers a solution that engineers will always need. A wheel-like interface allows lookup and conversion so users can move back and forth between the “from unit” and the “to unit.” Available measurements include entropy, electric charge, and length, among many others. Users can customize the measurements they need, and a dynamic “frequently used” tab helps with fast unit selection.


Sure, most phones have a note-taking app, but this one takes the process to the next level by facilitating setting tasks with reminders and deadlines, and syncing notes across devices and Google programs. Available on both Apple and Android platforms, the app can scan handwritten notes with a device camera and text-search both images and handwriting. Users can create separate “notebooks” to organize receipts, bills, and invoices, and customize the dashboard to display most relevant tasks and information.

Sololearn: Learn to Code

Much like Duolingo provides a daily foreign language lesson, Sololearn offers a bite-sized programming lesson for both iOS and Android users. Computers are relevant across all industries, including engineering, so learning the basics on the go helps individuals determine if it’s an avenue worth further exploration. More than 20 programming languages are included, such as the popular C++ and Python. The app also includes exercises to drive home the lessons learned. Users can test their code, learn the basics of building coding blocks, and debugging code.
Engineering is not a siloed field and is constantly evolving. Relevant mobile applications will too. The most useful ones are those that can sync with work through cloud-based platforms so users can continue fluid operations no matter where they left off.
Poornima Apte is a technology writer in Walpole, Mass.

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