A man and woman performing safety check on aircraft
Study area_

Aeronautical engineering

Design and build the aircraft of the future

Aeronautical engineering is the design, production, testing and maintenance of aircraft, aerospace vehicles and their systems. This includes conventional fixed-wing aircraft as well as helicopters, spacecraft and drones.

What is aeronautical engineering?

Aeronautical engineers design, construct and operate aircraft, aerospace vehicles and propulsion systems. An aeronautical engineer needs a sound understanding of the mathematics, physics, computer science, materials science and design philosophy to apply their skills in a variety of important areas in the global aerospace industry.

They also lead the way in many other fields of science and technology, so graduates are in demand in other areas, including low-speed aerodynamics such as automobile design, navigation systems, and computer operation and software engineering.

There is growth in commercial air and space travel and the demand for high-speed travel on the rise, the opportunity to revolutionise the next generation of aircraft and become a leader in the aerospace industry is all yours.

Aeronautical engineering careers

  • Improve flight safety, fuel efficiency, operational systems, and the environmental impact of air travel.
  • As an aerodynamicist or design engineer, you can design and develop products in fields such as formula and endurance racing, or the automotive industry.
  • Take your skills into the defence industry, specialising in military aircraft, rockets, satellites, and helicopters.
  • Become an aerodynamicist, design engineer, navigation systems engineer, automotive designer or aircraft engineer, among many other career options.
  • As your degree is accredited internationally, you can work anywhere in the world.
  • Work for renowned companies like Boeing, Airbus and Qantas, or start your own business.
  • Design, build and test new designs for small unmanned aerial vehicles (drones).
  • Graduate salaries start at $76K per annum (Glassdoor).

Why study aeronautical engineering with us?

There are many reasons for choosing our Bachelor of Engineering Honours (Aeronautical) as your first preference.

  • Use the 360-degree rotating cockpit simulator, the only simulator of its kind at an Australian university, that allows researchers and students to replicate the experience of piloting any aircraft, from an A380 to a spaceship.
  • Our engineering degrees are designed to ensure our graduates are best positioned to engineer for the digital age, and are embedded with enhanced foundation studies in data and computation.
  • As part of your degree you will undertake the award-winning Professional Engagement Program enabling you to change your approach to learning through self-reflection, and undertake a six-week internship to gain valuable firsthand experience.
  • When you study the Bachelor of Engineering Honours (Aeronautical Engineering), you can choose a stream specialisation or broaden your studies with a breadth specialisation. 
  • You may also be eligible to undertake the Space Engineering program in conjunction with this degree– the only program of its kind in Australia.
  • Broaden your career prospects by combining your Bachelor of Engineering Honours (Aeronautical) with a second degree in arts, commerce, science, health science, medical science, laws or project management. Combined degrees range from 5 to 6.5 years in length, with the same annual workload as a single degree student. 
  • This degree is accredited by Engineers Australia. Our graduates are also recognised internationally through the Washington Accord of the International Engineering Alliance. Your degree can take you anywhere in the world. 
Engineers Australia logo

Jeremy Cox

Jeremy Cox
Engineering Honours Aeronautical (Space) / Science
"I chose to study at Sydney because of the state-of-the-art facilities and equipment, from motion and static flight simulators, wind tunnels, to the Jabiru – the two-seater aircraft that students have the chance to assemble.”
Explore studying space engineering