Peter is a Senior Structural Engineer (FPSO Turret Moorings) at London Marine Consultants.
Name & Professional Registration
Peter Layram AMIMarEST
IMarEST Membership Status (Student, Affiliate, Associate, Member or Fellow?)
Role and organisation
Senior Structural Engineer (FPSO Turret Moorings) at London Marine Consultants
Summarise what you do in one sentence
I ensure that structures are fit for their intended purpose and strong enough to withstand all anticipated environmental conditions and imposed loadings.
Which organisations have you worked for previously?
Describe a typical workday
A typical work day for me will involve running structural analysis using our finite element analysis (FEA) software package, performing engineering hand calculations and writing up results into technical reports. Another important daily activity for me is interfacing with other discipline teams to ensure that we are coordinating our work and meeting each other’s requirements. These other disciplines include naval architects as well as piping, electrical and mechanical engineers.
Describe your academic/training history and how you got to where you are today.
MEng Civil Engineering from the University of Southampton
What skills are required in your position on a day-to-day basis?
As an engineer, the required core skills are mathematical and analytical with the end goal of solving practical problems. I need to be able to translate a real world problem essentially into a mathematical one, which can be modelled and analysed. Then the results from this analysis must be interpreted back into a practical (and cost-effective) solution. Also essential is good communication skills. It is no good coming up with a great engineering solution if you can’t communicate it effectively to your client and demonstrate to them why it is the right solution. I also have to mention teamwork since every project is a huge team effort, which can only be successful when everyone is sharing information, skills and resources.
What do you enjoy most about your role?
I like the fact that I work in a specialist industry with lots of interesting engineering challenges. This means that I am always learning and that finding engineering solutions is highly satisfying. Another great aspect of my role is having a high level of responsibility for my own work packages and seeing through the work from concept design to final build. Another bonus is that since Oil & Gas is a global industry, there is always the opportunity to travel and I have worked in places like Vietnam and Singapore, which have been great experiences.
What challenges have you had to overcome?
Obviously the engineering problems themselves can be very challenging with many requirements and constraints, which your solutions have to satisfy. In our industry, time is money so strict deadlines can often add pressure to your work. Therefore you have to be dedicated and be prepared to work long hours when required. Another big challenge of my job is due to the number of different parties involved in a project. Therefore you have to take the initiative in co-ordinating your work with others and making sure that you are working to all the latest information.
Describe a typical career path to your current role. How does this differ to your career path?
I think a Graduate Engineer will typically work in the same role for two to three years whilst they develop their skills and gain experience on a range of projects. Then you would start to take more responsibility for managing your own work packages and participate more in design decisions. At this point you are typically a Senior Engineer, which is my current stage. The next step is either to become a Project Engineer or what I would describe as a Specialist Engineer. A Project Engineer is part of the project management team and participates more in overall management of the engineering work with less time dedicated to performing technical calculations and analyses. A Specialist Engineer on the other hand will stay dedicated to their technical discipline and become expert in their field. So I would in fact not say that my career path is differing from a typical one for my role but that I am at a stage with exciting options for career progression.
Why did you become a member?
I joined the IMarEst to give myself a framework in which to continue my professional development toward the goal of becoming a Chartered Engineer. Coming from a Civil Engineering background where chartership is very important, I have the belief that being a member of a professional engineering institute such as the IMarEst is a great way to continue broadening your knowledge and skills. I also think that chartership gives a universal recognition to your competence as a professional in your field.
How has being a member of the IMarEST helped you in your career?
The IMarEST has helped me by providing me with guidance on monitoring and recording my professional development i.e. the learning of new skills and competencies. Membership of the institute and ultimately professional registration (chartership), are internationally recognised by employers within the industry as a sign of a competent and dedicated professional. The institute has also provided me with many learning opportunities by regularly hosting lectures and seminars on a broad range of topics. I personally also find it motivating to be part of and therefore representing, a prestigious institution like the IMarEST
Which professional journals and organisations help you keep up to date with industry news?
I am a member of the IMarEST and the Offshore Engineering Society (OES) who regularly publish news articles and host events and talks, which enable me to keep up with the latest industry developments. I also subscribe to Subsea World News and Maasmond Maritime which provide daily news on the Offshore Oil & Gas and Shipping businesses.
Give us an interesting fact about you!
I was born in the UK and have lived here all my life but currently only hold a French passport from my mother’s side.