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  • Study Type

    Full time available

  • Subject Areas


  • Start Date


  • Course Duration

    12 months full-time

  • Course Type


  • Course Fees


  • Last Updated

    09 August 2017

Course content

Demand for aerospace engineering graduates is rising, both in the UK and overseas. In fact, the UK aerospace industry is the second biggest in the world after the USA, and it’s home to some of the world’s leading aerospace companies such as Airbus, Astrium, BAE Systems, GKN and Rolls-Royce.

Taught by expert academics in a leading research environment, this programme will equip you with the knowledge and skills to succeed in an exciting and challenging sector. You’ll study aerospace structures and structural analysis, along with optional, specialist modules in areas such as aerodynamics and computational fluid dynamics, aircraft design, systems and optimisation methods, rotary wing aircraft and propulsion.

Our Aerospace Engineering Industrial Advisory Board is actively engaged in ensuring this course meets the needs of industry and reflects trends in the sector. It also provides industrial talks and seminars and advice and support to our students during their professional projects.

In addition to our advanced CAD facilities for design work, we have the latest industry-standard software for computational fluid dynamics and finite element modelling of material stress analysis, programming and structural and multidisciplinary optimisation.


We are currently seeking accreditation from the Institute of Mechanical Engineers (IMechE) and the Royal Aeronautical Society.

Course content

You’ll take a compulsory module in Semester 1 which develops your knowledge of aerospace structures and the theory behind aerospace structural analysis, as well as applying this understanding to real-world problems.

This will inform the rest of your studies, where you’ll select from a wide range of optional modules allowing you to pursue the topics that appeal to your interests or suit your future career plans. You could gain sophisticated knowledge in areas such as aerospace vehicle design, computational methods or materials failure analysis.

Throughout the programme you’ll complete your Professional Project – an independent piece of research on a topic within aerospace engineering that allows you to demonstrate your knowledge and skills. In the two taught semesters you’ll review the literature around your topic and plan the project, before completing the design, analysis, computation, experimentation and writing up in the summer months.

Want to find out more about your modules?

Take a look our Aerospace Engineering module descriptions for more detail on what you will study.

Course structure

Compulsory modules

  • Aerospace Structures 15 credits
  • Professional Project 75 credits

Optional modules

  • Materials Selection and Failure Analysis 15 credits
  • Design Optimisation - MSc 15 credits
  • Aerospace Vehicle Design 20 credits
  • Aerodynamics and Aerospace Propulsion 20 credits
  • Finite Element Methods of Analysis 20 credits
  • Mechatronics and Robotics Applications 15 credits
  • Engineering Computational Methods 15 credits
  • Rotary Wing Aircraft 15 credits
  • Vehicle and Product Systems Design 15 credits
  • Computational Fluid Dynamics Analysis 15 credits

For more information on typical modules, read Aerospace Engineering MSc in the course catalogue

Learning and teaching

Our groundbreaking research feeds directly into teaching, and you’ll have regular contact with staff who are at the forefront of their disciplines. You’ll have regular contact with them through lectures, seminars, tutorials, small group work and project meetings.

Independent study is also important to the programme, as you develop your problem-solving and research skills as well as your subject knowledge.


You’ll be assessed using a range of techniques including case studies, technical reports, presentations, in-class tests, assignments and exams. Optional modules may also use alternative assessment methods.


The professional project is one of the most satisfying elements of this course. It allows you to apply what you’ve learned to a piece of research focusing on a real-world problem, and it can be used to explore and develop your specific interests.

Typical projects for MSc Aerospace Engineering students could include:

  • Design of a stiffened titanium aircraft structural component for additive manufacturing
  • Development of software based on Swarm Intelligence Methodologies for Structural Optimisation
  • Circulation control using air jets to improve the performance of aircraft wings and wind turbines
  • Design and optimisation of a Flexible Structural Support for a Mars Rover Umbilical Release Mechanism
  • Aerodynamic analysis of the Bloodhound supersonic car using Computational Fluid Dynamics
  • Computational Fluid Dynamics modelling of turbulent combustion processes
  • The control of flow separation using vortex generators

A proportion of projects are formally linked to industry, and can include spending time at the collaborator’s site over the summer.

Career opportunities

The aerospace industry is one of the most successful parts of UK engineering and is truly global in nature.

You’ll be able apply the skills you gain from this course to numerous areas of the aerospace industry, such as aerospace fundamental research, airline management and operations, satellite operations, aerospace design and manufacture in both the civil and military environments and Formula 1 racing.

Whether you join an aerospace company in the UK, such as Airbus, BAE Systems or Rolls-Royce or choose to work elsewhere in the world, the foundation provided by the MSc will make sure you are prepared for a rewarding and challenging career.

Links with industry

During this course you will meet employers from organisations operating within this sector through seminars and talks and by attending our careers fair. In previous years there have been talks from colleagues at Airbus, Astrium, BAE Systems, Rolls-Royce to provide additional industrial perspectives to the course and career guidance to students. 

Visit the Aerospace Engineering MSc page on the University of Leeds website for more details!





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