Why study Aerospace Engineering at Bristol?
There are many great reasons why the University of Bristol is an ideal place for studying Aerospace Engineering.
- It's focused: from day one every part of our course is tailored to giving you the skills needed to design an aircraft or spacecraft. For an idea please see sample 1st year timetable (PDF, 34kB)
- It's diverse: you willl study a range of technical subjects - aerodynamics, structures, materials, systems, design, control - and get experience of making them work together through projects;
- It's challenging: your mathematics and physics will be stretched and you will have a lot of work to do. You need to be a highly motivated individual to keep up. See typical offer on specific course pages in the Undergraduate prospectus;
- It's quality assured: in the 2014 National Students Survey, 100 percent of our students were is a managerial or professional job six months after completing the course. Visit the Unistats website for current information;
- It's research-led: our lecturers are world-leading in a variety of aerospace research topics:
- REF 2014 rated 93 percent of Engineering research (including Aerospace Engineering) as 'world leading' or 'internationally excellent';
- Royal Aeronautical Society praised the "research ethos of the department and the positive influence it exercises on teaching" in their 2010 accreditation report;
- It's well-connected: Bristol is the heart of the UK aerospace community and Department’s close links with major companies including:
You can read more about Aerospace Engineering in a blog by one of our postgraduate students.
This degree has been accredited by the Royal Aeronautical Society under licence from the UK regulator, the Engineering Council. Accreditation is a mark of assurance that the degree meets the standards set by the Engineering Council in the UK Standard for Professional Engineering Competence (UK-SPEC). An accredited degree will provide you with some or all of the underpinning knowledge, understanding and skills for eventual registration as an Incorporated (IEng) or Chartered Engineer (CEng). Some employers recruit preferentially from accredited degrees, and an accredited degree is likely to be recognised by other countries that are signatories to international accords.
Bristol has a long history of association with the aerospace industry, which places us in a geographically excellent position; we’re only six kilometres away from Airbus, Rolls-Royce, GKN, BAE Systems and MBDA. This benefits both our teaching and research. Airbus, AgustaWestland and Astrium (now Airbus Defence and Space) are partners in our group design project, which means their engineers provide in-depth technical input and support for the design groups.
The Industrial Liaison Office is able to help arrange contacts and placements in your first year, aided by the rich variety of employers in our vicinity. Being close to the heart of aerospace in the UK brings substantial benefits for your education and future employability.
For a complete list of the aerospace units covered, please visit the Undergraduate prospectus.
In 1946 the Bristol Aeroplane Company provided funding to open our department and train the engineers needed to sustain the valuable and rapidly expanding post-war aerospace industry.
Today, our Industrial Advisory Board (IAB) provides advice and feedback on the structure and composition of the department’s aerospace degree programmes to ensure that Bristol graduates have the employability skills required for a successful career in industry. Many of our IAB members also offer studentships and summer placement opportunities, and are involved in the research projects undertaken during the degree.
The IAB currently comprises:
Institutional, research and staff links
Association between the city of Bristol and the aerospace industry dates back to 1910 and the foundation of the Bristol Aeroplane Company by Sir George White. The first aircraft, the Bristol Boxkite, went into production that year as a trainer aircraft, and continued in production until 1914.
The Bristol Aeroplane Company company was based at the end of the tramline in Filton and this site later became part of the British Aircraft Corporation, and subsequently BAe Systems. Filton is currently occupied by a wide range of manufacturers including Airbus, GKN, MBDA and Rolls-Royce as well as BAe.
The Department has research links with all major aerospace companies, and much of the research has both industrial input and long-term industrial exploitation. A significant amount of the Department's research funding comes directly from industry and many projects would involve some aspect of industrial engagement.
Membership of Airbus Group University Partner Programme (AGUPP)
In 2015 the University of Bristol become a member of Airbus's partner programme. The Airbus Group University Partner Programme is a strategic initiative launched to foster long-term collaboration with selected universities and engineering schools world-wide in areas of mutual interest.
Airbus Ambassadors and Sir George White Chair
Quality assured: In the 2015 National Students Survey, 93 percent of our students were satisfied with the quality of the course, and 95 percent were in a managerial or professional job six months after completing the course.