Clear Technical Writing
A significant part of helping your readers understand what you are saying is giving them more than a sequence of statements.
The virus arrives in a capsule and escapes detection.
This sentence talks about two things, arrival and escape. They must be related, somehow. Otherwise, why would we have put them in the same sentence?
Use a participle
The virus arrives in a capsule, escaping detection.
Now we have a relation because our second statement has become an explanation for everything to the left of it.
Consider this rewrite in the abstract:
We converted a short list into a brief story.
Use an appositive
As long as there are two verbs, there are two statements.
The chemical substance is a pure reagent that causes the desired transformation.
When the first verb conveys a sense of equivalence, we can often turn the first statement into an explanation by writing it as an adjective in apposition to the topic.
The chemical substance, a pure reagent, causes the desired transformation.
As long as the appositive is brief, the reader is more engaged and more informed.
Use a preposition
Again we start with two verbs.
The fusilage has a pitot probe that measures total pressure.
When the first verb conveys a sense of ownership, it's possible to promote the first object to become the new main topic. A preposition along with the initial topic can form an explanation.
The pitot probe on the fusilage measures total pressure.
Edit your writing by underlining opportunities for helpful explanations.
Well-designed protective relays protect equipment from faults
and maintain continuous service.
One impedance element
is a #21 device and
measures distance to a fault.
The high voltage line
has this relay that
responds differently for faults upstream or downstream.
Lesson: Helpful Explanations
Module: Special Topics
Course: Clear Technical Writing