Aerospace Engineers

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About the Job

Perform engineering duties in designing, constructing, and testing aircraft, missiles, and spacecraft. May conduct basic and applied research to evaluate adaptability of materials and equipment to aircraft design and manufacture. May recommend improvements in testing equipment and techniques.

It is also Called

  • Wind Tunnel Engineer
  • Weight Engineer
  • Weight Control Engineer
  • Vibration Engineer
  • Value Engineer
  • Transonic Engineer
  • Thermodynamics Engineer
  • Thermodynamicist
  • Test Facility Engineer
  • Test Engineer
View All

What They Do

  • Evaluate biofuel performance specifications to determine feasibility for aerospace applications.
  • Design or engineer filtration systems that reduce harmful emissions.
  • Design new or modify existing aerospace systems to reduce polluting emissions, such as nitrogen oxide, carbon monoxide, or smoke emissions.
  • Review aerospace engineering designs to determine how to reduce negative environmental impacts.
  • Evaluate and approve selection of vendors by studying past performance or new advertisements.
  • Research new materials to determine quality or conformance to environmental standards.
  • Direct aerospace research and development programs.
  • Diagnose performance problems by reviewing performance reports or documentation from customers or field engineers or inspecting malfunctioning or damaged products.
  • Maintain records of performance reports for future reference.
  • Analyze project requests, proposals, or engineering data to determine feasibility, productibility, cost, or production time of aerospace or aeronautical products.

Interests

People who work in this occupation generally have the interest code: IR.

This means people who work in this occupation generally have Investigative interests, but also prefer Realistic environments.

Work Values

People who work in this occupation generally prize Working Conditions, but also value Recognition and Independence in their jobs.

Things They Need to Know

  • Engineering and Technology - Knowledge of the practical application of engineering science and technology. This includes applying principles, techniques, procedures, and equipment to the design and production of various goods and services.
  • Mathematics - Knowledge of arithmetic, algebra, geometry, calculus, statistics, and their applications.
  • Design - Knowledge of design techniques, tools, and principles involved in production of precision technical plans, blueprints, drawings, and models.
  • Physics - Knowledge and prediction of physical principles, laws, their interrelationships, and applications to understanding fluid, material, and atmospheric dynamics, and mechanical, electrical, atomic and sub- atomic structures and processes.
  • Computers and Electronics - Knowledge of circuit boards, processors, chips, electronic equipment, and computer hardware and software, including applications and programming.

Things They Need to Be Able to Do

  • Critical Thinking - Using logic and reasoning to identify the strengths and weaknesses of alternative solutions, conclusions or approaches to problems.
  • Science - Using scientific rules and methods to solve problems.
  • Reading Comprehension - Understanding written sentences and paragraphs in work related documents.
  • Writing - Communicating effectively in writing as appropriate for the needs of the audience.
  • Mathematics - Using mathematics to solve problems.
  • Speaking - Talking to others to convey information effectively.
  • Active Listening - Giving full attention to what other people are saying, taking time to understand the points being made, asking questions as appropriate, and not interrupting at inappropriate times.

Additional Resources


Preparation Required

Most of these occupations require a four-year bachelor's degree, but some do not.

Wages

In 2017, the average annual wage in California was $123,230 with most people making between $72,350 and $176,910

Outlook

0.67%
avg. annual growth

During 2014, this occupation employed approximately 13,400 people in California. It is projected that there will be 14,300 employed in 2024.

This occupation will have about 90 openings due to growth and about 380 replacement openings for approximately 470 total annual openings.