1. Home: Explore careers
  2. Aerospace engineer

Aerospace engineer

Alternative titles for this job include Aeronautical engineer

Aerospace engineers design, build and maintain planes, spacecraft and satellites.

Average salary (a year)

£25,000 Starter

to

£52,000 Experienced

Typical hours (a week)

37 to 40 a week

You could work

evenings / weekends occasionally

How to become

Explore the different ways to get into this role.

How to become an aerospace engineer

You can get into this job through:

  • a university course
  • a college course
  • an apprenticeship
  • working towards this role
  • applying directly

University

You can do a foundation degree, higher national diploma or degree in aerospace engineering, avionics, or a related subject like:

  • electrical or electronic engineering
  • mechanical engineering
  • manufacturing or product engineering
  • physics or applied physics
  • software engineering or mathematics

Entry requirements

You'll usually need:

  • 1 or 2 A levels, or equivalent, for a foundation degree or higher national diploma
  • 2 or 3 A levels, or equivalent, including maths

More Information

College

You can do a higher national certificate (HNC) or diploma (HND) in engineering before applying for a job with an aerospace company. Subjects include:

  • Level 4 HNC Diploma in Mechanical Engineering
  • Level 5 HND Diploma in Aeronautical Engineering
  • Level 5 HND Diploma in Electrical Engineering

Entry requirements

You may need:

  • 1 or 2 A levels, a level 3 diploma or relevant experience for a level 4 or level 5 course

More Information

Apprenticeship

You could do an engineering higher or degree apprenticeship. Relevant apprenticeships for working in the aerospace industry include:

  • aerospace engineer
  • electro-mechanical engineer
  • materials science technologist
  • materials process engineer
  • power and propulsion gas turbine engineer

You would combine learning in the workplace with studying for a degree at an approved university.

Entry requirements

You'll usually need:

  • 4 or 5 GCSEs at grades 9 to 4 (A* to C) and A levels, or equivalent, for a higher or degree apprenticeship

More Information

Work

You may be able to join a company as an engineering technician and do training on the job to qualify as an engineer.

Direct Application

You can apply for jobs directly if you've got qualifications and experience, for example from working in mechanical, electrical or electronics engineering.

More Information

Further information

You can find out more about careers in aerospace engineering from Careers in Aerospace.

What it takes

Find out what skills you’ll use in this role.

What it takes

Skills and knowledge

You'll need:

  • knowledge of engineering science and technology
  • maths knowledge
  • design skills and knowledge
  • to be thorough and pay attention to detail
  • science skills
  • analytical thinking skills
  • knowledge of computer operating systems, hardware and software
  • knowledge of physics
  • to be able to use a computer and the main software packages competently

What you’ll do

Discover the day to day tasks you’ll do in this role.

What you'll do

Day-to-day tasks

Your day-to-day duties will depend on your role. You could:

  • develop navigation, communications or weapons systems
  • research ways to make fuel-efficient parts, such as wings, fuselage and engines
  • use CAD software for design
  • test prototypes
  • collect and analyse test data
  • plan and supervise the fitting of aircraft and components
  • sign off projects under strict industry regulations
  • schedule and supervise maintenance
  • write technical reports and estimate project costs and timescales

Working environment

You could work in a factory, in an office, on an aircraft or in an aircraft hangar.

Career path and progression

Look at progression in this role and similar opportunities.

Career path and progression

With experience, you could specialise in a particular field like:

  • aerodynamics
  • fuel efficiency
  • space technology
  • investigating air accidents

You could also move up to become a project manager or consultant aerospace engineer.

Current opportunities

Find apprenticeships, courses and jobs available near you.

Current opportunities

Apprenticeships In England

Electro Mechanical Engineering Apprentice

  • Wage: £20,000.00 Annually
  • Location: Central Boulevard, Prologis Park, Coventry

Materials Science Management Degree Apprenticeship

  • Wage: £17,339.00 Annually
  • Location: Arnold, Nottingham

Courses In England

Engineering (Aerospace Engineering) - BEng Hons Degree (Full-time)

  • Provider: BLACKPOOL AND THE FYLDE COLLEGE
  • Start date: 12 September 2023
  • Location: Blackpool

L2 Aerospace and Aviation Engineering Competence Diploma

  • Provider: FAREHAM COLLEGE
  • Start date: 04 September 2023
  • Location: Lee On Solent

Jobs In the United Kingdom

The Find a job service can help you with your search for jobs and send alerts when new jobs become available.

Skills assessment

Take an assessment to learn more about your skills and the careers that might suit you.

Is this page useful?

Yes No

Thank you for your feedback.

Thank you for your feedback. Click here if you'd like to let us know how we can improve the service.