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Career as Aeronautical Engineer

Aeronautical Engineering is the science associated with the study, design, and production of flight-capable machinery or aircraft operating techniques. It is the study of the design and operations of an aircraft that involves practical and theoretical understanding of materials, assembling parts, testing, and maintenance of aircraft. An Aeronautical Engineer's primary job is to design aircraft and thrust systems, but there can be more responsibilities added to the profile with time. An Aeronautical Engineer may get opportunities in the Aviation industry, defence, and civil aviation department. The job may bring lucrative packages, but it also might be a very responsible and demanding job. It is an important branch of engineering that has helped mankind to master the world above the skies.

Job Profile

Career as Aeronautical Engineer

Aerospace Engineering is a board branch of research that deals with the study of aircraft and spacecraft and their production. In India and a lot of other countries, it is still a growing market. Yet India offers good potential in the field of aerospace engineering, as an booming sector  One can opt to be a scientist or technician. Scientists usually work in any of the three places - manufacturing research and development, private and government labs and educational research. Even Engineers can select from different roles such as manufacturing, flight analysis, materials and processes, construction, etc. A person also has the option of joining an organization of Indian space research or NASA. In addition to NASA and ISRO, various public and private airlines, India's Helicopter Corporation, Aircraft companies, military and defence departments, aeronautical companies, space equipment, and aircraft design organizations hire aviation engineers.


Aeronautical electronics engineers specialize in instrument maintenance, electrical and electronic equipment, navigation, radar communications, and radio communication. At airports, engineers perform routine maintenance on the ground during an aircraft overhaul. They respond to reports from aircrew of any difficulties experienced during flights, and carry out repairs and corrections and also perform aircraft maintenance and overhaul in hangers and workshops when an aircraft is due for regular inspection and checks.

The average salary of an Aeronautical Engineer is Rs 6 lakh or more. With experience, the earning grows manifold. It can go as high as Rs 45- 49 Lakh per annum.

Engineers in governmental organizations, such as HAL, NAL, are paid official rates, while private-sector engineers are paid according to the scales determined by the company management.


Future Growth Prospects and How to get there faster

According to a recent report, the jobs of aerospace engineers from 2016 to 2026 is expected to grow by 6 percent. Aircraft are being enhanced to generate less noise pollution and have improved fuel effectiveness, which will take further research and development. Aeronautical Engineers are on global demand. Students can specialize in any particular aerospace product of their choice like helicopters, rockets, jets, planes, etc.

Pros and Cons of being an Aeronautical Engineer


  • This job is very rewarding in terms of remuneration and earnings.

  • This field can open doors to international exposure pretty early in the career.

  • The future aspects that are bright and promising.


  • The job can be very stressful and physically demanding.

  • The job will demand travelling and following extreme work hours to meet urgent Aeronautical requirements.

  • This profession needs extensive skill, technical knowledge and sufficient practical experience for growth.

How do I get there?

Quite a few engineering colleges in India offer Aeronautical Engineering. The primary eligibility criteria for Aeronautical Engineering is a minimum of 75 % (65% for SC/ST) per cent marks in Physics, Chemistry & Mathematics in Class XII.

Aeronautical Engineers' admission criteria for the IITs are JEE Main and JEE Advanced score. Some of the Universities conduct separate entrance tests for admission for the aeronautical branch. Below are a few of the entrances/competitive exams that students can prepare and score good marks for admissions into top colleges.

  • JEE (Joint Entrance Exam) conducted by the IITs

  • All India Engineering/ Architecture Entrance Examination (AIEEE)

  • Delhi University Combined Entrance Examination (CEE)

  • Hindustan University Entrance Test (HITSEE)

  • The Indian Institute of Aeronautics Entrance Exam (IIA)

  • SLIET Entrance Test (SET)

  • IISAT Admission Test (IIST, Thiruvananthapuram)

  • SRM Engineering Entrance Examination (SRM EEE)

For those looking for Postgraduate courses, IITs/IISc conducts a National Level Entrance Test Graduate Aptitude Test in Engineering (GATE) for admission to postgraduate and doctoral programs in institutions under MHRD such as IITs/IISc.

Courses and Eligibility

4-year engineering degree,3-year science degree, technical diplomas of 3-year, architecture 5-year, Integrated 5-year degree courses, Post-Graduation in Mathematics/ Science/ Statistics / Computer Applications.  

Apart from PG and UG level, some universities also offer diploma programs.


Course / Level

Course Duration

Eligible After

Diploma Courses

3 years

Class 10 / Class 12

B.E. / B. Tech

4 years

Class 12

M.E. / M. Tech

2 years


Ph.D. Doctoral Degree

2 years or more


How much does it cost?

The average cost of a B. Tech course in Aeronautical engineering is around Rs 1 lakh, including the hostel facilities in government colleges. For some private colleges, the fees can be more. The Diploma courses and certificate programs cost less. For an M.Tech. in Aeronautical engineering, the fees can be around Rs 2 lakh for the two-year-long course. Multiple PG diploma courses are available at lower costs from various institutes.

What are the Top Colleges where one should be studying to become an Aeronautical engineer?

Aeronautical engineering is a great option for those with an engineering awareness and is much in demand compared to all other courses in India.

In India, there are quite a few colleges that offer the students excellent facilities and quality infrastructure. 

Rank of College

(NIRF 2019)

Name of College, City

Programme Fees 

Rank 1

IIT, Madras

B. Tech. – Total Fees 8.82 Lakh

Rank 2

IIT, Kanpur

B. Tech. – Total Fees 8.27 Lakh

Rank 7

IIT Guwahati


Rank 30

Indian Institute of Space Science and Technology, Thiruvananthapuram

B. Tech

Rank 33

Birla Institute of Technology, Ranchi

M. Tech. – Total Fees 4.5 Lakh

Rank 35

Amity University

B. Tech. – Total Fees 9.27 Lakh

Rank 43

Manipal University of Technology

B. Tech. – Total Fees 15.50 Lakh

Books and other Study Material

Below are a few good books that can be referred by Aeronautical students to enhance their knowledge in the field.

  • Introduction to Flight (SI Units), McGraw Hill Education

  • Introduction to Flight, 7th Edition by John D Anderson Jr.

  • Aircraft Basic Science, McGraw Hill Education

  • Basics of Space Flight Black & White Edition by Dave Doody, Bluroof Press

  • Fundamentals of Aerodynamics, 5th Edition by John D Anderson Jr

What if this career does not work out for me? What are the other options for a person with these credentials?

This is the best career for a student who has a deep interest in flying and wants to understand the mechanism behind it. However, the job is very risky and physically exhausting. Those who do not prefer a job can opt to take up Masters/PhD and join reputed Universities/colleges as a teacher/lecturer of the subject.

Content on this page is by Career Expert
Mrs. Kum Kum Tandon
MA (Psychology), M.Ed, Diploma in Educational Psychology, Vocational Guidance & Counseling (NCERT, Delhi) | View Complete Profile

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