Repair, troubleshoot, and improve bleeding-edge aeronautics.
What does an Experimental Aircraft Mechanic do?
As an Experimental Aircraft Mechanic, you help repair, troubleshoot, and improve the latest flying machines. Somewhere between a Mechanic and a Scientist, the Experimental Aircraft Mechanic diagnoses problems with new aircraft and reports them back to the development team so they can be conclusively repaired for the future and improved upon in later models.
When dealing with experimental aircraft, it’s not enough to simply repair whatever went wrong. Sometimes, the problem isn’t even readily apparent. Experimental aircraft often have some unexpected, new type of technology that needs to be dealt with.
You need the ability to adjust your thinking on the fly to meet the challenges of whatever new wrinkle the design team has incorporated into the vehicle. You use tools like x-ray examination and stress testing to investigate mechanical malfunctions, and report all findings back to the design team.
Work hours and conditions for Experimental Aircraft Mechanics can vary widely. You can work standard eight-hour shifts, during whatever time aircraft tests are being performed. If there are night exercises, then you may be on call or on duty overnight.
Some aircraft tests are performed in secret or seclusion by the armed forces, or by military Contractors with Top Secret clearances. You may need to undergo a background check and vetting in order to obtain this type of clearance.