University of Southern California The USC Andrew and Erna Viterbi School of Engineering Pre-College Summer Programs - Student Portfolios

Airplanes, Helicopters, and Rockets

Done By: Tan, Caitlin, Ariana, Ellen, Bright, Scott

Aerospace Engineering

Aerospace engineering is a branch of engineering that deals with flight within Earth's atmosphere. It's origin dated back to 1903 when the Wright brothers succesfully created the first flying machine. As flying technologies became better in the 20th century, flight to space was made able. Because of this advancement, aerospace engineering also deals with flight in space. Aerospace engineering can be separated into several subgroups including fields such as aerodynamics, propulsion, structures and many more.

Aerodynamics is a field within aerospace engineering that specializes in the study of the flow of air over a streamlined surface. Aerodynamicists that works in the aerospace industries are interested in highspeed air flows. Their job is to maximize lift and minimize drag.

Propulsion engineers are those who are involve with the design and development of air-breathing propulsion systems. Air-breathing propulsion systems are systems that powers and propels flying vehicles and rockets. Propulsion engineers are involved with creating more efficient, quieter, and more  environmental friendly propulsion systems.

Aerospace structural engineers work with materials to create a lightweight and durable aircraft structure. The structure of the aircraft is very essential; therefore, engineers must utilize alloys, composites, and other materials to create a light and strong structure.

In addition aerospace engineering also deals with the design of control and operating systems of both aircrafts and spacecraft. Aerospace engineers who are involve with control systems often work with electrical engineers.

Since a large number of aircraft and spacecraft are control by humans, aerospace engineers also take into account the safety and human limitations of the people operating the aircraft and spacecraft.

Project Development




Project Testing

Prezi Design Process


Oakes, William C., Les L. Leone, and Craig J. Gunn. Engineering Your Future: A Comprehensive Introduction to Engineering. New York: Oxford UP, 2012. Print