Aerospace Engineering and Operations Technologists and Technicians

Career, Salary and Education Information

What They Do: Aerospace engineering and operations technologists and technicians run and maintain equipment used to develop, test, produce, and sustain aircraft and spacecraft.

Work Environment: Aerospace engineering and operations technologists and technicians usually work in manufacturing plants, laboratories, and offices. Most work full time.

How to Become One: Aerospace engineering and operations technologists and technicians typically need an associate’s degree in engineering technology or a related field. Some employers consider candidates who have a high school diploma or have completed a certificate program.

Salary: The median annual wage for aerospace engineering and operations technologists and technicians is $68,570.

Job Outlook: Employment of aerospace engineering and operations technologists and technicians is projected to grow 9 percent over the next ten years, about as fast as the average for all occupations.

Related Careers: Compare the job duties, education, job growth, and pay of aerospace engineering and operations technologists and technicians with similar occupations.

Following is everything you need to know about a career as an aerospace engineering and operations technologist or technician with lots of details. As a first step, take a look at some of the following jobs, which are real jobs with real employers. You will be able to see the very real job career requirements for employers who are actively hiring. The link will open in a new tab so that you can come back to this page to continue reading about the career:

Top 3 Aerospace Engineering Technicians Jobs

  • Mechanical Engineering Technician (Aerospace & Defense) - Systima Technologies - Mukilteo, WA

    Company Description As a leader in the Aerospace , Defense and Commercial markets, Systima ... Job Description SUMMARY Engineering Technicians provide skilled technical support for all ...

  • Technician - Butler America Aerospace - 98021, WA

    ... other technicians and engineers in executing tasks that could include cable harness assembly ... Employment with Butler America Aerospace , LLC. is governed on the basis of qualifications and ...

  • Environmental Test Lab Technician - 2nd Shift - Aerospace & Defense - Systima Technologies - Mukilteo, WA

    Our mission is to provide high value, responsive engineering and innovative products that enable ... ETL Technicians perform basic testing functions and activities commonly found in an environmental ...

See all Aerospace Engineering Technicians jobs

Top 3 Aerospace Operations Technicians Jobs

  • Mechanical Engineering Technician (Aerospace & Defense) - Systima Technologies - Mukilteo, WA

    Company Description As a leader in the Aerospace , Defense and Commercial markets, Systima ... This position works closely with the engineering teams, operations staff and other technicians on ...

  • Environmental Test Lab Technician - 2nd Shift - Aerospace & Defense - Systima Technologies - Mukilteo, WA

    ETL Technicians perform basic testing functions and activities commonly found in an environmental ... Familiarity with crane operation and lifting equipment desired * Physical requirements of this ...

  • Airframe Electrical/Avionics Technician - AEVEX Aerospace - Murrieta, CA

    About AEVEX Aerospace AEVEX Aerospace , headquartered in Solana Beach, California, supports the U.S ... operations service; advanced intelligence data processing, exploitation, and dissemination ...

See all Aerospace Operations Technicians jobs

What Aerospace Engineering and Operations Technologists and Technicians Do[About this section] [To Top]

Aerospace engineering and operations technologists and technicians install, run, and maintain equipment used to develop, test, produce, and sustain aircraft and spacecraft. Their work is critical to ensuring the safety and precision of key parts of these vehicles and systems.

Duties of Aerospace Engineering and Operations Technologists and Technicians

Aerospace engineering and operations technologists and technicians typically do the following:

  • Meet with aerospace engineers to discuss details and implications of test procedures
  • Build and maintain test facilities for aircraft systems
  • Make and install parts and systems to be tested in test equipment
  • Operate and calibrate computer systems so that they comply with test and manufacturing requirements
  • Make sure that test procedures are performed smoothly and safely
  • Record data from test parts and assemblies
  • Install instruments in aircraft and spacecraft
  • Monitor and ensure quality in producing systems that go into the aircraft

New aircraft designs undergo years of testing before they are put into service. As part of the job, technologists and technicians often calibrate test equipment, such as wind tunnels, and determine the causes of equipment malfunctions. They also may program and run computer simulations that test the new designs.

Work Environment for Aerospace Engineering and Operations Technologists and Technicians[About this section] [To Top]

Aerospace engineering and operations technologists and technicians hold about 11,900 jobs. The largest employers of aerospace engineering and operations technologists and technicians are as follows:

Aerospace product and parts manufacturing 35%
Engineering services 22%
Scientific research and development services 12%
Computer and electronic product manufacturing 8%

Aerospace engineering and operations technologists and technicians who work in manufacturing or industrial plants are frequently involved in assembly.

Aerospace Engineering and Operations Technologist and Technician Work Schedules

Most aerospace engineering and operations technologists and technicians work full time. Depending on the employer or project, they may work in shifts or be required to work overtime.

How to Become an Aerospace Engineering and Operations Technologist or Technician[About this section] [To Top]

Get the education you need: Find schools for Aerospace Engineering and Operations Technologists and Technicians near you!

Aerospace engineering and operations technologists and technicians typically need an associate’s degree in engineering technology or a related field. Some employers consider candidates who have a high school diploma or have completed a certificate program. Some aerospace engineering and operations technologists and technicians must have security clearances to work on projects related to national defense. U.S. citizenship may be required for certain types and levels of clearance.

Education for Aerospace Engineering and Operations Technologists and Technicians

High school students interested in becoming an aerospace engineering and operations technologist or technician should take classes in math, science, and, if available, drafting and information technology.

Aerospace engineering and operations technologists and technicians typically need an associate’s degree in engineering technology or a related field. Some employers consider candidates who have a high school diploma or have completed a certificate program. Associate’s degree and certificate programs are available at community colleges or vocational–technical schools.

Important Qualities for Aerospace Engineering and Operations Technologists and Technicians

Communication skills. Aerospace engineering and operations technologists and technicians receive instructions from aerospace engineers. Therefore, they must be able to understand and follow those instructions, as well as communicate any problems to their supervisors.

Critical-thinking skills. Aerospace engineering and operations technologists and technicians must be able to help aerospace engineers troubleshoot particular design issues. They must be able to help evaluate system capabilities, identify problems, formulate the right question, and then find the right answer.

Detail oriented. Aerospace engineering and operations technologists and technicians make and keep precise measurements needed by aerospace engineers. In addition, they keep accurate records of these measurements.

Interpersonal skills. Aerospace engineering and operations technologists and technicians must be able to take instructions and offer advice. The ability to work well with supervising engineers, other technicians, and mechanics is essential because technicians interact with people from other divisions, businesses, and governments.

Math skills. Aerospace engineering and operations technologists and technicians use the principles of mathematics for measurement, analysis, design, and troubleshooting tasks in their work.

Mechanical skills. Aerospace engineering and operations technologists and technicians must be able to assist aerospace engineers by building what the engineers design. Mechanical skills are needed to help with the processes and directions required to move from design to production.

Problem-solving skills. Aerospace engineering and operations technologists and technicians help aerospace engineers troubleshoot design issues. They must be able to help evaluate system capabilities, formulate questions, and then find the answers.

Licenses, Certifications, and Registrations for Aerospace Engineering and Operations Technologists and Technicians

Although not required for the job, SpaceTEC, the National Science Foundation’s Center for Aerospace Technical Education, offers the Certified Aerospace Technician Core Certification. Recertification is required every 3 years.

Aerospace Engineering and Operations Technologist and Technician Salaries[About this section] [More salary/earnings info] [To Top]

The median annual wage for aerospace engineering and operations technologists and technicians is $68,570. The median wage is the wage at which half the workers in an occupation earned more than that amount and half earned less. The lowest 10 percent earned less than $43,400, and the highest 10 percent earned more than $103,450.

The median annual wages for aerospace engineering and operations technologists and technicians in the top industries in which they work are as follows:

Computer and electronic product manufacturing $72,890
Aerospace product and parts manufacturing $70,280
Engineering services $64,590
Scientific research and development services $63,320

Most aerospace engineering and operations technologists and technicians work full time. Depending on the employer or project, they may work in shifts or be required to work overtime.

Job Outlook for Aerospace Engineering and Operations Technologists and Technicians[About this section] [To Top]

Employment of aerospace engineering and operations technologists and technicians is projected to grow 9 percent over the next ten years, about as fast as the average for all occupations.

About 1,200 openings for aerospace engineering and operations technologists and technicians are projected each year, on average, over the decade. Many of those openings are expected to result from the need to replace workers who transfer to different occupations or exit the labor force, such as to retire.

Employment of Aerospace Engineering and Operations Technologists and Technicians

Most employment growth for these workers will be in the professional, scientific, and technical services industry.

Employment projections data for Aerospace Engineering and Operations Technologists and Technicians, 2020-30
Occupational Title Employment, 2020 Projected Employment, 2030 Change, 2020-30
Percent Numeric
Aerospace engineering and operations technologists and technicians 11,900 12,900 9 1,100


A portion of the information on this page is used by permission of the U.S. Department of Labor.


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