Constant technological innovations have increased the number of Engineering study options at Bachelor's level.
Now, it is no longer about sticking to traditional career paths but about trying out new and exciting specialisations to build your professional life. One fascinating and adventurous area is Aerospace Engineering.
Let's find out what are the best job opportunities in the aerospace industry. We've also included the average annual salaries in the United States based on data from PayScale:
1. Aerospace Engineer – 84,970 USD/year
- Work on design and sketches of planes, jets, other aircraft, as well as propulsion systems, missiles or military devices
- Examine project proposals and determine if they are possible from a technical, financial, and safety point of view
- Design and test new materials and prototypes to improve the speed, fuel efficiency and safety of current aircraft
2. Flight Engineer – 76,000 USD/year
- Perform multiple technical and planning checks, including before take-off, after landing, and during flight
- Monitor the essential systems and sensors of the aircraft, such as the engines, the electrical systems, fuel consumption and balance, hydraulics
- Provide relevant technical information to the captain and make suggestions in critical situations, like emergency landings
- Flight engineers can work on both civilian and military flights. Depending on each flight's personnel and needs, a flight engineer can also take on the role of first officer or co-pilot.
3. Maintenance Engineer – 71,050 USD/year
- Check the aircraft to detect any technical issues or abnormalities
- If any technical problems are found, inform the team responsible for fixing such problems and suggest appropriate procedures
- Always follow the company's safety regulations and standards; create detailed reports of your technical evaluations
4. Materials Engineer – 77,850 USD/year
- Analyse the qualities and performance of materials used to manufacture aircraft, such as titanium, steel, carbon fibre, composite structures
- Create new products or find new composites that can improve the overall reliability and safety of mechanical structures
- Research: new materials, technologies, and manufacturing processes that can be used in the production of aircraft or spacecraft
5. Inspector and Compliance Officer – 70,500 USD/year
- Determine if all the safety procedures and regulations are followed to protect the health of engineers, constructors, and aircrew
- Examine plans and sketches to find any design flaws before the initial testing phase of prototypes
- Provide safety training and presentations to all team members and evaluate their understanding of these procedures
Who hires aerospace engineers?
There are many types of private and public entities that hire aerospace engineers. These include local governments, manufacturing companies, the military, and so on. Here are a few examples:
- US Air Force
- Federal Aviation Administration (FAA)
- Private airline companies (e.g. Delta Airlines, Qatar Airways)
Best aerospace engineering universities in the world
According to the latest Times Higher Education Rankings, the following are some of the best universities for future Mechanical or Aerospace Engineering students:
- Harvard University, the US
- University of Oxford, the UK
- ETH Zurich, Switzerland
- Peking University, China
- National University of Singapore (NUS), Singapore
- Delft University of Technology, the Netherlands
- TU Munich, Germany
- The Hong Kong University of Science and Technology, Hong Kong SAR
- Korea Advanced Institute of Science and Technology, South Korea
- University of Toronto, Canada
Here are other universities we recommend for an Aerospace Engineering degree:
Is a Bachelor's in Aerospace Engineering right for you?
Working in the aerospace industry is not going to be easy-peasy. You'll need analytical skills, a responsible attitude, and out of the box creativity. But you'll also get the rare opportunity to be part of a very select and fantastic industry. There's a reason why they call it ‘rocket science’, you know?