Top 10 Aerospace and Defense Career Options

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If you’re the type of person who wants to develop some of the most advanced systems that our world relies on, a career in aerospace and defense is what you should look into. These scientists work on things like aircraft, satellites, missiles and spacecraft prototypes to make sure they work in their intended way and ensure the safety of many people who rely on these systems.

A career in aerospace and defense is one that requires an incredible level of intelligence and technical know-how but can also be very financially rewarding. If you’re a scientist who’s about to graduate with an advanced degree, you should weigh all of your options when approaching the industry.

Here are the top 10 aerospace and defense career options out there.

10. Structural Engineer

Average Salary: $78,811

A structural engineer works with architects and designers in order to ensure that buildings. hospitals, ships, and aircraft can withstand the natural pressure of their environment and keep people safe. They use mathematics, physics, and design principles to develop the most crucial structures around us.

9. Aircraft Technician

Average Salary: $49,000

An aircraft technician or AMT, performs maintenance or alterations to aircraft. As an aircraft tech you help keep pilots safe and do the physical labor that’s required to perform maintenance on an aircraft. As an aircraft technician you can work in the private or government sector.

8. Intelligence Officer

Average Salary: $76,487

Intelligence Officers largely work with the government or government contracted defense organizations to resolve outcomes based on critical information that’s gathered in the field. These people will end up influencing key decisions on the defense of the United States, and have been a critical part of most if not all, major military campaigns.

7. Instrumentation Engineer

Average Salary: $89,020

While the design of space and aircraft are critical, what’s equally important is the instrumentation that keeps people safe inside of the craft. Instrumentation Engineers are concerned with things like level, temperature, pressure and humidity on-board the aircraft.

6. Production manager

Average Salary: $108,659

While production managers can be found in almost every industry, they are critically important to the field of aerospace. Production managers are involved with the planning and implementation of the manufacturing process, and ensuring that production stays within quality standards.

5. Aerospace Technician

Average Salary: $62,680

Much like an aircraft technician, an aerospace technician works on maintenance and alterations for spacecraft. Astronauts rely on these people to ensure that the ship is in good working condition before making the voyage into space.

4. Defense Contractor

Average Salary: $72,471

Defense contractors aid our government in military campaigns by providing equipment or services for our defense. Depending on your role as a contractor, you could be creating strategy, deploying troops, or developing new technology to be used on the front lines.

3. Pilots or Crew Members of a Spacecraft

Salary: $65,140 – $100,701

The dream of many kids to be an astronaut is one that takes intense training and acuity both physically and mentally. You are the person who mans or maintains the spacecraft that goes into space.

2. Aerospace Engineering and Operations Technicians

Average Salary: $66,180

These people maintain and operate equipment used for the purposes developing, producing, and testing new aircraft and spacecraft. They are highly involved with the manufacturing process and use computer simulations to test much of it.

1. Aerospace Engineer

Average Salary: $103,720

This is the job you want in aerospace. You are the person developing and designing the space and aircraft, and are the number one person involved in the development process. You will use physics, chemistry,and structural engineering in order to develop new and more efficient airplanes and spacecrafts.You may even be able to find a job in the UAV industry repairing unmanned systems.

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About Author

Garrett Ettinger is a writer and communication specialist who has worked in a variety of fields. He specializes in online writing and currently is the branding and communication coordinator at the non-profit ACTION United in Philadelphia, PA. He regularly advocates on issues involving unemployment, raising the wage, and education reform.

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