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Aeronautical Engineering/aircraft engineer to aeronautical engineer


QUESTION: Sir, I'm just wondering: is it possible for a license aircraft maintenance engineer to pursue furthur studies in aeronautical/aerospace engineering?

Your reply will be very much appreciated.


ANSWER: Yes, further study is usually very desirable.
Often once a maintenance engineer finds an interesting aspect of the industry, or after being hired, further study is desirable.

Some areas that likely require additional study are testing and inspection, computer programming/CAD, chemistry, material science, composite repair or manufacturing, structural analysis, administration, grant writing, etc.

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QUESTION: Just an additional 'silly' question after my brief background ...

A former BSc Physics student, I'm currently a cadet air maintenance engineer with the PNG Defence Force - working toward my L.A.M.E license (I withdrew from my 3rd year of study for the cadet program.) Being passionate about aeroplanes, I have always wanted to study aeronautical engineering with a goal of one day working in an aerospace company (e.g.: Boeing, Airbus e.t.c). The two areas that intrigues me most are aerodynamics and aircraft design (aircraft wings that is). My 'silly question': Sir, are there any good chances for me in one day becoming an aircraft designer?
(Given I have afterwards acquired my L.A.M.E license; and wish to pursue my interest on my own accord.)

Your response will of much help and appreciation.


The quick answer is... your not likely to be given an opportunity to design aircraft.

Aircraft designers are usually chosen from long standing employees and work in teams. For example the wing design will usually be headed by a 20+ yr veteran in the company with a PHD in aerodynamics. He will hand pick his team of engineers. His team will frequently be individuals he already knows such as business or university acquaintances.

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Jan Zumwalt


SMALL & LARGE PLANES - Aeronautics, Aerodynamics, Designing, Fabricating, Trouble shooting, Repairs, Flight testing, Fluid & Pneumatic controls, Engines, Propellers, Sheet metal, Rivets, Electronics, Fabric, Schools, Career choices, Aircraft systems.


FAA certified commercial pilot FAA certified (A&P) Air-frame & Power-plant mechanic Aeronautical Engineer - University of Anchorage (Alaska) High school instructor, computers, robotics and aviation Current president of EAA chapter 837 (Payette, ID) Past Director of Maintenance (two airlines) Past Continental Airlines maintenance shift supervisor (Anchorage, Alaska)

Current president of EAA chapter 837 (Payette, ID)

FAA certified commercial pilot, FAA certified (A&P) Airframe & Powerplant mechanic, Aeronautical Engineer - University of Alaska (Anchorage), FCC MROP-Marine Radio Operators License, FCC GROL-General Radio Operators License, FCC RADAR endorsement, GEN FAM certificates MD aircraft, GEN FAM certificates Boeing aircraft, State Instructor License, High school instructor, computers, robotics and aviation

Past/Present Clients
Continental Airlines, University of Alaska, Pegasus Aircraft Maintenance, Klondike Air, Methow aviation, Bridget Mina Infant Foundation, Aviation Wholesale Supply, Bureau of Land Managment

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