An aerospace engineer is a highly-trained professional who works on the design, construction and operation of aircraft and space systems, ensuring that these systems are reliable and functioning efficiently. An aerospace engineer is responsible for the safety of passengers and crew as well as the success of space exploration missions.
Learn what an aerospace engineer does, how to become one and what you can expect for the average salary in Quebec!
Aerospace engineer duties and tasks
The responsibilities of an aerospace engineer include designing and developing new aircraft and space systems, solving technical problems, supervising the construction and assembly of aircraft, participating in flight tests, and commissioning aircraft.
They may also be involved in planning and managing projects, conducting research, guiding development and performing data analysis.
Aerospace engineers often work on a team with other engineers and professionals to solve the technical challenges of designing and building safe and reliable air and space vehicles. This can include work on airplanes and helicopters, but also satellites or rockets.
This profession can be demanding, often requiring extra hours of work and high availability for business travel. You need to be passionate about flying vehicles and have a deep interest in their design and navigation.
How to become an aerospace engineer
To become an aerospace engineer, you will need a university degree in aerospace, mechanical, electronic or electrical engineering. Technical skills such as knowledge of materials, structures, propulsion and navigation are essential, as well as proficiency in math and physics.
Aerospace engineers must also have a university degree in aeronautical engineering or space engineering, as well as obtain professional certification. They must maintain their certification through continuing education and keep up to date on industry standards.
It is possible to earn a Bachelor's degree in Aerospace Engineering at the Polytechnic University of Engineering in Montreal or the École de technologie supérieure. The degree is also offered at Concordia, Laval, McGill and Sherbrooke Universities. Studying at a Master’s degree level results in an impressive 86.7% employability rate, according to the Quebec government website.
After completing your university education, you must join the Ordre des ingénieurs du Québec to be permitted to work using the title of engineer.
Aerospace engineer skills
If you work as an aerospace engineer, you will be entering a rigorous profession involving a high level of responsibility. You will be required to master complex concepts and possess various skills specific to the field. These include:
- Knowledge in fluid mechanics, thermodynamics and propulsion (for the design of aircraft and rocket engines)
- Structural design skills (for aircraft and rocket hull construction)
- Knowledge in aerodynamics (for optimal wing shape design and drag minimization)
- Systems skills (for the design of navigation, communication and control systems)
- Computer skills (for programming simulations and embedded systems)
- Ability to work in a team environment and communicate effectively with other design team members and customers
- Knowledge of regulations and safety standards (to ensure designs comply with regulatory requirements)
- A background in advanced mathematics and physics (to understand the fundamental concepts used in aerospace design)
These specific skills do not include important interpersonal skills, such as written and oral fluency in French and English, versatility, thoroughness, attention to detail and initiative.
Career opportunities for aerospace engineers
An aerospace engineer can work for a variety of different organizations. Typically, they work for airlines, aircraft manufacturers or space agencies. They can also work for government organizations or defense companies.
Their high level of expertise often allows them to work abroad and to progress rapidly to management positions.
Aerospace engineer salary in Quebec
Aerospace engineers generally earn close to six figures. The median salary according to Guichet Emploi is estimated at $43.27 per hour in Quebec, with higher-paid positions at $76.92 per hour.
Find a job as an aerospace engineer
Aerospace engineering is a challenging profession, offering the opportunity to work on innovative and exciting projects and to contribute to the development of cutting-edge technology.
As specialists in engineering recruitment, Fed Engineering draws on the expertise of trained employees within the aerospace engineering sector. We invite you to submit a spontaneous application or consult our job offers for engineers in Quebec! We look forward to meeting you and learning more about your career plans.