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Aeronautical engineering

Design, build and pilot 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.

With the 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 $60–63K per annum (Graduate Careers Australia)

Why study aeronautical engineering with us?

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

  • Combining hands-on experiential learning and industry experience, this degree prepares you for the aerospace industry’s next evolution.
  • During your degree you will design and assemble a single-engine aircraft, as well as work with flight simulators, develop and operate drones and undertake flight operations training.
  • 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.
  • Specialise in Computational EngineeringEngineering Aerodynamics,  or Flight Data Analysis.
  • 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 are five years in length – this means you do just one extra year to attain two full qualifications, 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.
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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 available. There are the motion and static flight simulators, two wind tunnels, the unmanned aerial systems lab and Jabiru – the two-seater aircraft that students have the chance to assemble.”
Explore studying space engineering

Caroline Hamilton Smith

Caroline Hamilton Smith
Engineering Honours (Aeronautical)
“My main area interest is space exploration and during my degree I was lucky enough to learn about the orbital mechanics required to put a rocket into orbit. This was an extraordinary experience!”
Bachelor of Engineering Honours (Aeronautical)