The unmanned systems industry is currently undergoing explosive growth; as a result there is an increased demand for unmanned vehicle systems designers. Our MSc Unmanned Aircraft Systems Design course has been created to provide graduate engineers with the necessary skills and knowledge to design unmanned airvehicle systems.
The future of exploration, transportation and conflict is in unmanned aircraft. Be the future and start a fascinating career on the precipice of national intelligence and technological advancements with a masters in Unmanned Aircraft Systems Design. Sometimes referred to as drones, UAVs, UAS or RPAS, unmanned aircraft are revolutionising our ability to monitor and understand our environment.
This industry-led course focuses on the cutting-edge design of these sophisticated vehicles and is ideally suited to engineers looking to specialise or to enter into this fast-paced industry.
Due to the explosive growth of the industry, unmanned aircraft systems designers are in high demand. This course has been created to provide graduate engineers with the skills and knowledge needed to design unmanned aircraft systems.
You will be taught by leaders in the field. The University has a strong reputation in autonomous systems with many world firsts including: SULSA, the first 3D printed plane and the first low-cost maritime surveillance UAV, 2SEAS.
Practical learning is a fundamental part of this one-year course. You will design, build and fly your own unmanned vehicle as part of a group design project. Visit the Design Show website to see examples of students' projects. We provide you with access to world-class facilities to put your design through mission validation including: a UAV test pilot base and dedicated flying site, state-of-the-art wind tunnels and rapid prototyping labs. You will also have the opportunity to study for a pilot’s licence.
Your core modules will give you a solid foundation of aerospace control systems and avionics. You will master design methodologies and put these into practice. Each semester, you can select specialist modules that are aligned to your interests.
The emphasis of the course is on the design of the vehicle, rather than the wider systems such as ground station and software associated with navigation and communications. The course will explore civil and commercial applications of unmanned systems. Although some of the teaching material may reference military technology, the course will not cover military, defence or weapon-specific systems.
In addition to group work, you will undertake an individual research project. Previous examples include the development of a hybrid vehicle and a multi-rotor automated Li-Po battery changer. Our students also benefit from our many industry partnerships and external contributors, including QinetiQ and Rolls-Royce.
From software agents used in networking systems to embedded systems in unmanned vehicles, intelligent systems are being adopted more and more often. This programme will equip you with specialist knowledge in this exciting field and allow you to explore a range of topics in computer science.
Core modules will give you a foundation in topics like systems programming and algorithms, as well as the basics of machine learning and knowledge representation. You’ll also choose from optional modules focusing on topics like bio-inspired computing or text analytics, or broaden your approach with topics like mobile app development.
You’ll gain a broad perspective on intelligent systems, covering evolutionary models, statistical and symbolic machine learning algorithms, qualitative reasoning, image processing, language understanding and bio-computation as well as essential principles and practices in the design, implementation and usability of intelligent systems.
You’ll benefit from world-class facilities to support your learning. State-of-the-art visualisation labs including a powerwall, a benchtop display with tracking system, WorldViz PPT optical tracking system and Intersense InertiaCube orientation tracker are all among the specialist facilities we have within the School of Computing.
We also have Ascension Flock of Birds tracking systems, three DOF and 6DOF Phantom force feedback devices, Twin Immersion Corp CyberGloves, a cloud computing testbed, rendering cluster and labs containing both Microsoft and Linux platforms among others. It’s an exciting environment in which to gain a range of skills and experience cutting-edge technology.
The MSc in Aerospace Dynamics aims to provide both fundamental and applied knowledge applicable to the understanding of air flows, vehicle dynamics and control and methods for computational modelling. The course will provide students with practical experience in the measurement, analysis, modelling and simulation of airflows and aerial vehicles. The MSc in Aerospace Dynamics stems from the programme in Aerodynamics which was one of the first masters courses offered by Cranfield and is an important part of our heritage. The integration of Aerodynamics with Flight Dynamics reflects the long-term link with the aircraft flight test activity established by Cranfield. Graduates of this course are eligible to join the Cranfield College of Aeronautics Alumni Association (CCAAA), an active community which hold a number of networking and social events throughout the year.
Suitable if you have an interest in aerodynamic design, flow control, flow measurement, flight dynamics and flight control. Choose your specialist option once you commence your studies.
The aerospace industry in the UK is the largest in the world, outside of the USA. Aerodynamics and flight dynamics will remain a key element in the development of future aircraft and in reducing civil transport environmental issues, making significant contributions to the next generation of aircraft configurations.
In the military arena, aerodynamic modelling and flight dynamics play an important role in the design and development of combat aircraft and unmanned air vehicles (UAVs). The continuing search for aerodynamic refinement and performance optimisation for the next generation of aircraft and surface vehicles creates the need for specialist knowledge of fluid flow behaviour.
Cranfield University has been at the forefront of postgraduate education in aerospace engineering since 1946. The MSc in Aerospace Dynamics stems from the programme in Aerodynamics which was one of the first masters' courses offered by Cranfield and is an important part of our heritage. The integration of aerodynamics with flight dynamics reflects the long-term link with the aircraft flight test activity established by Cranfield.
Graduates of this course are eligible to join the Cranfield College of Aeronautics Alumni Association (CCAAA), an active community which holds a number of networking and social events throughout the year.
The Industrial Advisory Panel, comprising senior industry professionals, provides input into the curriculum in order to improve the employment prospects of our graduates. Panel members include:
Completing this Masters degree at Liverpool John Moores University will give you the knowledge and practical skills to become a specialist in Unmanned Aerial Vehicles or UAVs.
This taught masters degree will give you the practical, theoretical and regulatory knowledge to lead and undertake all aspects of the implementation and operation of UAV systems within a commercial enterprise in a safe, efficient and legal manner.
You will also secure essential practical skills in constructing, flying and operating drone systems. You will build your own, professional standard, multi-rotor drone system; test fly this system and then use it for practical assignments during the programme, including undertaking a research dissertation project. At the end of the course you can take your drone system with you and use as part of your career.
In today’s world, to be commercially successful in drone applications, you must be safe and operating totally with the aviation law. That’s why the programme includes a specialist module on UAV Operations and the Law. Not only will you know the legal and regulatory framework, more importantly you will learn how to interpret it so that you can design complex and challenging UAV operations within the current legal and regulatory framework.
Please see guidance below on core and option modules for further information on what you will study.
UAV Technology and Operations: This will teach you the basics of the technology at systems level. As part of this module you will learn to fly UAVs under experienced qualified instructors, first on simulators and then out in the field.
Drone Construction: You build your own multi-rotor drone, complete with flight controller, GPS systems and radio control system. Under the guidance of the teaching team, you will test and then fly your drone in a series of increasingly demanding exercises.
Research Methods: In order to obtain your masters degree you will have to undertake an individual research project and write it up as a dissertation. In this module you will learn the research, presentation and critical appraisal skills you will need to successfully complete your project.
Advanced UAV Technology and Operations: Practical flying and operating experience, now in more advanced scenarios, is an important element of this module with further simulator exercises and another 5 full-day flying sessions.
UAV Operations and the Law: It is important to know the legal and regulatory framework within which UAVs operate, to become qualified for commercial UAV use it's essential. Here you will learn about the law, the guidelines and get to practice your understanding with 'moot' exercises – debating complex operational scenarios.
Optical Measurement and Sensing: Of all the data gathering devices carried by UAVs the overwhelming majority are optical and to get the best results you will need to understand this technology. It's not just video cameras; you need to fully understand technologies including stereo photogrammetry, LIDAR, structured light and shape from motion systems if you are to be effective in data gathering from drones.
Dissertation Project: On successful completion of the taught part of the programme you will complete an individual research or advanced practice project. Project topics can be self-generated, or drawn from a range of real-world applications originating from outside of the University among the research team’s industrial contacts.
Further guidance on modules
The information listed in the section entitled ‘What you will study’ is an overview of the academic content of the programme that will take the form of either core or option modules. Modules are designated as core or option in accordance with professional body requirements and internal Academic Framework review, so may be subject to change. Students will be required to undertake modules that the University designates as core and will have a choice of designated option modules. Additionally, option modules may be offered subject to meeting minimum student numbers.
Academic Framework reviews are conducted by LJMU from time to time to ensure that academic standards continue to be maintained.
Please email [email protected] if you require further guidance or clarification.