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How has the aerospace engineering job changed over time/since it started?

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I am a Swedish student researching about aerospace engineering, as I would like to work with that as I grow up. #aerospace #engineering #aerospace-engineering

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Catherine’s Answer

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Technological advances have meant the complexity of aircraft is constantly increasing; the number of systems on-board that all need to be integrated and considered. Having worked on multiple aircraft types, from new technology jets to aging passenger aircraft, it is clear that so many systems are relied upon to fly the latest aircraft. This will only increase with unmanned aircraft.

From an engineering perspective, there are therefore more and more considerations to design and maintain aircraft. Working on the latest jet aircraft required significant training to understand all of the supporting aircraft systems. Faults were often software or computer based, rather than classic mechanical failures of components and materials.

As an aerospace engineer, you need to understand what the implications of individual and collective failures are to understand the risk to the aircraft.

A recent example of challenges with increasingly complex aircraft is the grounding of the 737 Max.

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John’s Answer

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Catherine answered well. Many of the focus areas in the past are changing with technology. Years ago, people designed planes that "looked right" and you just checked them in a wind tunnel and in mechanical stress tests. Over the last 30-40 years design technology and test methods finally came of age. Now, understanding electronics and computer systems has become a mainstay of almost every engineering field, but especially aerospace. With the ever increasing complexity of designs, statistics and reliability have also become part of the foundation of good design. Being able to use structured problem solving techniques to identify existing and potential issues and their impact is another thing a successful engineer has is his/her "tool belt". In aerospace and other fields where high reliability is critical, these skills are even more important.
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John’s Answer

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Updated Translate
Catherine answered well. Many of the focus areas in the past are changing with technology. Years ago, people designed planes that "looked right" and you just checked them in a wind tunnel and in mechanical stress tests. Over the last 30-40 years design technology and test methods finally came of age. Now, understanding electronics and computer systems has become a mainstay of almost every engineering field, but especially aerospace. With the ever increasing complexity of designs, statistics and reliability have also become part of the foundation of good design. Being able to use structured problem solving techniques to identify existing and potential issues and their impact is another thing a successful engineer has is his/her "tool belt". In aerospace and other fields where high reliability is critical, these skills are even more important.
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