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Aerospace Engineer

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Summary

Design, build, and maintain aircraft.

Salary Range

$88,240 - $140,420

Source: U.S. Department of Labor

What does an Aerospace Engineer do?

The job of an aerospace engineer is to work on the development of aircraft and related technology, including missiles and spacecraft. This is a broad field, and you may find yourself working with fixed-wing aircraft, helicopters, space vehicles, missiles and weapons, flight components, simulators, or instruments.

Most aerospace engineers concentrate on a single area of expertise, such as propulsion systems, flight mechanics, guidance and control systems, aerodynamics, or robotics. Within any of these areas, you might be involved in research, planning, testing, production, or analysis. The work environment is multidisciplinary, so an understanding of related disciplines is essential.

To become an aerospace engineer, you need to be passionate about aircraft and spacecraft. Aerospace engineering requires excellent math skills, the ability to solve problems, and a methodical approach. A degree in one of the relevant engineering disciplines, such as aerospace, electronics, mechanics, software, or materials is required. Employers widely value work experience in a related field. You might also enter the profession through apprenticeships, which are normally offered by larger firms.

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