8 April 2019 (by Lisa Slight (lslight))
What the job entails:
Aerospace engineers design and develop machines that fly. These include aeroplanes, spacecraft, helicopters, and weapons systems. There are many stages in building these machines and aerospace engineers usually specialise in a particular area of work. This might be the engine, wings or the computer systems that control parts of the machine. Aerospace engineers come up with new ideas and designs. They test them out to see if they work and are safe to use. They do many tests and make many changes before they get to a final version. They might work, for example, on designing and developing planes that use less fuel and cause less pollution. Another exciting area of work is in developing spacecraft that could take tourists into space.
Routes and choices while at school:
There are several routes you could take to become an aerospace engineer. Most aerospace engineers start by going to university and doing a degree. For this you will need A-levels or equivalent qualifications. The entry requirements vary, but usually the subjects you study should include maths and physics. Whichever route you take you will need a good education. The first thing to do is to get a range of GCSEs at grades 4 or C or better, or equivalent. These should include maths, science and English. Employers and universities will want to know that you are strong in science. Double science will keep many options open and triple science will help you to compete even better. Design and technology, and computing would be relevant, and it could be useful to have a modern foreign language.
Pay when starting is about £25,000 to £27,000 per year. When experienced, it is about £38,000 to £39,000. For experts with a lot of experience, pay can rise to about £57,000.