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Aerospace Engineer Profile

Aerospace Engineer Profile

 
Introduction

This Section of the site details information that you might find useful if you are looking to secure employment or require further details regarding working as an Aerospace Engineer. This page details the following Information:-

  • Finding Suitable Work as an Aerospace Engineer
  • Working Duties Expected
  • Hours and Environment
  • Working Skills Required
  • Training Requirements
  • Salary Expectations
  • Trade Information
  • Other useful Aerospace Engineer Work Information


Finding Suitable Work

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Working Duties Expected

Aerospace engineers research, design, manufacture and maintain aircraft and space vehicles. They work on airframes, hydraulics and pneumatics, engines and fuel systems and control and communications systems for planes, missiles, satellites and spacecraft. The work of an aerospace engineer could involve:

• research - to solve complex engineering problems caused by weight, altitude, temperature and engine performance
• design - turning ideas into the plans for a product. Design can range from producing a single component to a whole aircraft engine
• manufacture - making, modifying and assembling parts of an aircraft
• maintenance - ensuring aircraft are safe and fully operational.

Engineers normally work 37 to 40 hours a week, but hours can be longer to meet deadlines. Engineers involved in research and design will usually work in laboratories and research centres, but all engineers will also visit factory production areas. They also have to visit aircraft at airfields.

Aerospace engineers need:

• to be good at engineering, maths and computing
• to have a logical approach to solving problems
• to have good team-working skills.

Most work for aircraft manufacturing companies, airline operators and the Armed Forces. Other employers include Government departments and agencies, and regulatory authorities like the Civil Aviation Authority (CAA).

An aeronautical engineering degree is the most usual route into the career. Although it is possible to begin training for craft or technician-level jobs straight from school with good GCSEs/S grades in English, maths and science (preferably physics), most aerospace engineers study full time at university or college. Adults with relevant experience are usually welcomed.

Experienced aerospace engineers are usually either incorporated or chartered engineers and it is worth getting as much training and as high a level of qualifications as possible.

Promotion could be to senior engineering posts or management roles. There are also opportunities overseas or to work independently as a consultant.

What does the role encounter?

Aerospace engineers research, design, manufacture and maintain aircraft and space vehicles. They may be specialist mechanical, electrical, electronics or even chemical engineers who apply their knowledge to sophisticated products such as aircraft, missiles, satellites and space vehicles.

They might specialise in:

• airframes - the construction and maintenance of airframes and wings
• hydraulics - the operation of aircraft controls, ailerons, elevators and flaps
• engines - piston or gas turbine engines
• fuel - storage and use of specialist fuels
• pneumatics - air compression used in jet engines and in aircraft controls
• avionics - electrical and communication systems.

The work of an aerospace engineer could involve:

Research - engineers working in research aim to find new and innovative ways of doing things. They have to solve complex engineering problems caused by weight, altitude, temperature and engine performance.

Design - design involves turning ideas into the plans for a product. Design can range from producing a single component to a whole aircraft engine. Aerospace engineers use computer-aided design (CAD) systems to help produce their designs.

Manufacture - this involves manufacturing, modifying and assembling the components that come together to produce an aircraft, missile or satellite.

Maintenance - maintenance engineers ensure that an aircraft is safe and fully operational. This involves regular inspection, maintenance and servicing.

Some aerospace engineers specialise in a particular aspect like thermodynamics, or designing software for aircraft control systems. Some become experts in a particular subject like aerodynamics or propulsion.

Working on aerospace projects involves teams of people so aerospace engineers could be working with many different types of engineer, designer, manufacturer and, of course, the pilots or users of the aircraft.

What type of hours will I have to work?

Engineers normally work 37 to 40 hours a week. Hours can be considerably longer if there is a project deadline to meet or to fit in with timetables for testing an aircraft. This could involve working evenings and weekends. Engineers involved in research and design will usually work in clean, quiet laboratories and research centres, but all engineers will also visit factory production areas, which may be noisy. They may also have to visit aircraft at airfields, which are often windswept and noisy, to inspect or test aircraft functions.

What level of salary and benefits are there?

These figures are only a guide.

• Starting salaries for graduates are around £17,000 a year.
• With experience, engineers earn around £35,000.
• The average income for a qualified engineer is £45,000 or more.

What type of skills will I need?

You will need to have the following skills:

• a logical approach to problem solving
• good numeracy and computing skills
• be able to read diagrams and drawings
• be able to communicate ideas in writing and face-to-face
• have a high level of engineering knowledge
• have excellent team-working skills
• be able to take on responsibility and work independently
• be keen to keep up to date with new developments and technology
• have normal colour vision.

Are there similar types of job or related industries?

Yes this list is not exhaustive but see the following categories:

Aerospace Engineering Technician
Astronomer
Design Engineer
Electrical Engineer
Electronics Engineer
Heat Treatment Operator
Materials Engineer
Mechanical Engineer
Nuclear Engineer
Physicist
Royal Air Force (RAF) Airman/Woman
Royal Air Force (RAF) Officer
Royal Navy/Marines Rating.

Other Useful Aerospace Engineer Work Information

We have a section available at this site on Aerospace Engineer job interview tips that you may find of interest should you wish to brush up your skills in this area and we also have number of career articles that may also be of use to you from within our guides and documents section.

Locations where we feature Jobs include:-
Aberdeen, Berkshire, Aberdeen, Bath, Bedfordshire, Berkshire, Birmingham, Bradford, Bristol, Cambridgeshire, Cardiff, Central London, Cheltenham, Cornwall, Coventry, Derby, Devon, Docklands, Dorset, Dundee, Durham, East Midlands, East Sussex, Edinburgh, Essex, Glasgow, Gloucester, Hampshire, Hertfordshire, Kent, Lancashire, Leeds, Leicester, Leicestershire, Lincolnshire, Liverpool, London, Manchester, Middlesbrough, Midlands and in various parts of the West Midlands

Details of other Aerospace Engineer Jobs can also be found in other UK wide areas including:-
Milton Keynes, Newcastle, Newcastle Upon Tyne, Norfolk, North London, North Midlands, Northampton, Northamptonshire, Northern Ireland, Northumberland, Norwich, Nottingham, Nottinghamshire, Oxford, Oxfordshire, Plymouth, Salisbury, Scotland, Sheffield, Shropshire, Somerset, South East, South London, South Midlands, Southampton, Staffordshire Surrey, Swansea, Swindon, Telford, Wales, Warwickshire, West End, West London, West Midlands, Worcestershire, York and throughout Yorkshire.

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