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The night sky presents us with the idea of infinity, and advances in space engineering lead the way in giving us the opportunity to go further and explore more than ever before.
At Surrey, we pioneered sophisticated ‘micro-satellites’ in the 1980s. Since then, we’ve maintained a programme of building entire satellites, performing mission planning, working with international launch agencies and providing in-orbit operations, keeping us at the forefront of the space revolution.
Our strategic partnership agreements with Surrey Satellite Technology Ltd and Airbus ensure we continue to be part of the lifeblood in the UK’s industrial space sector.
What you will study
Our MSc in Space Engineering is designed to give you the specialist multidisciplinary knowledge and skills required for a career
Read more about this course
A minimum of a 2:2 UK honours degree in either Aerospace Engineering, Communication Engineering, Computer Engineering, Electrical Engineering, Electrical and Computer Engineering, Electronic Engineering, Information and Communication Technologies, Mechanical Engineering, Physics or Telecommunication Engineering, or a recognised equivalent international qualification. We'll also consider relevant work experience if you don't meet these requirements.
Please see course website for further details.
Fees & funding
Start dates & study options
The University of Surrey is one of the UK's top professional, scientific and technological universities. Surrey has a world-class profile, a leading reputation in teaching and research, and received a prestigious Gold award in the first ever Teaching Excellence Framework (TEF)Read more
"I studied at the University of Surrey in 2010, and am now a Spacecraft Verification and Test Engineer at the European Space Research & Technology Centre in the Netherlands.
"I was drawn to study here because of the very good reputation of the Surrey Space Centre; I was convinced it was the best option for me. Also, the flexibility and support of the University staff was a plus, enabling me to study for my MSc alongside a full-time job.
"Taking the programme was hard work and a lot of fun. I flew in every Thursday evening from my home country to participate in meetings and lectures. The course was diverse and thorough, covering most aspects of the space engineering industry and I gained a better understanding of the subject by the time I finished – significantly increasing my confidence at work.
"My time at Surrey helped me learn how to cope with responsibility, as well as manage my time effectively and prioritise tasks in order to complete things. I had the opportunity to work on a conceptual and feasibility study for a future space mission: the idea of developing concepts and designing a space mission based on latest technological missions, with the possibility that it might materialise, still puts a big smile on my face. Surrey Space Centre’s impressive links with the space industry provide you with unique opportunities to get involved with real projects.
"To anyone considering further study in electronic engineering, I’d say you obviously need basic knowledge and skills in the field but also that you need to have patience and be flexible. The thing that will make you stand out is originality and being yourself."
Our masters students go on to a huge range of exciting roles in industry as well as into postgraduate research. On graduation day, we caught up with George Hine who studied for an MSc Space Engineering at Surrey and is now working for Leonardo as a graduate project assurance engineer.
Why did you decide to come to Surrey for your masters?
I studied motorsport engineering as my undergraduate degree, and knew that I wanted to go into either a project engineering or an over-arching role. I decided that the best way to prepare myself would be to gain additional experience in electronic engineering to add to my mechanical knowledge. I find space a really interesting sector so went for the MSc Space Engineering course.
What were the best things about studying at Surrey?
I think one of the really interesting things is how involved the University is in actually doing the things it’s teaching, which contrasts with some of the other places I looked around. The fact that Surrey has the Surrey Space Centre (SSC) and its spin-off commercial company Surrey Satellite Technology Limited (SSTL) makes it quite unique. Students, as well as academic staff and researchers, get the chance to use real technology as part of the course modules and during project work – for example the ground station within SSC to communicate with spacecraft.
A great aspect of the course was that one of the first modules we studied during our first semester, Space System Design, gave us all the fundamental information we needed for the other modules of the course – perfect for someone with a limited background in the subject such as myself. This was delivered by Professor Craig Underwood who has an incredible background and experience in the sector.
What did you get up to at Surrey outside of your course?
I sat on the Student Staff Liaison Committee as a student rep for the course, which gave me an interesting insight into how the University runs from behind the scenes. I enjoyed engaging with the ‘law makers’, and being able to represent my cohort and report back on what was and wasn’t running well.
“The presence of an active space centre is a great asset for learning the nuances of designing a space mission."
Having done an undergraduate degree in aerospace engineering and worked for the Indian Space Research Organisation (ISRO) for a couple of years, I wanted to gain a postgraduate degree in space engineering. As Surrey is one of the frontrunners across the world in designing, building and operating small satellites, with the Surrey Space Centre on campus, it was the obvious choice for me.
The best thing about the MSc in Space Engineering is that its modules cover every engineering aspect of designing and conducting a space mission, so it turns you into a multi-disciplinary space systems engineer. The presence of an active space centre is a great asset for learning the nuances of designing a space mission. Every professor has worked on space missions, bringing their hands-on experience to the lectures.
The other great thing that stands out during my time at Surrey is the wonderful cohort of students who made the course and lectures enjoyable. Surrey has a diverse student community which gives you the chance to make friends from many different countries and learn about their culture. Working late nights on project reports with friends at Surrey Space Centre and ordering pizzas to keep us going, were the best times. Other memories I’ll cherish are cooking together with friends in our on campus residence, taking part in karate sessions and playing squash at Surrey Sports Park.
I studied for the MSc at Surrey during a sabbatical from my job and, since returning, I’ve continued to work as a systems engineer at ISRO. My work now focuses on the assembly, integration and testing of payload fairings for launch vehicles which is exciting, and getting the chance to witness launches makes my job really satisfying. I’ve recently been promoted to the next grade of engineer within my organisation.
To anyone thinking of studying space engineering at postgraduate level I’d say: work hard and consistently, and stay focused on your goal. We are living in exciting times when the space industry is growing beyond the realms of government, and there are many wonderful opportunities in store.
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