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

Aerospace Engineering

What is aerospace engineering?

Aerospace engineers focus on building, testing, and supervising the manufacture of aircraft and spacecraft. They develop new technologies for use in defense systems and space explorations, and improve things such as navigation, communication, and production methods.


Aerospace engineering encompasses both aeronautical and astronautical engineering. Aeronautical engineering focuses on aircrafts, while astronatuical engineering focuses on spacecrafts.

Many aerospace engineers focus on only one kind of aerospace product, such as airplanes, helicopters, or rockets, and use CAD and robotics to build them.

They are typically experts in aerodynamics, thermodynamics, or celestial mechanics.Although we cannot use CAD, our group split up into three teams to build our own airplane, helicopter, and rocket. Two of us focused on building any one of the aircrafts, and we specialized in each when we built them.