Project work

Aviation students in the flight simulator

If you’re planning a career within the aviation industry, either as a pilot or as a managerial or operational ground-based team member, it’s vital that you have in-depth knowledge and practical experience of working effectively both individually and as part of a team.

Not only will our courses enable you to develop a range of skills including research, presentation and report writing but you’ll also have the opportunity to work on a diverse range of projects throughout your degree such as those outlined below.

Year one

The introductory group project is a major part of your coursework for the year. Aspects of aircraft design will be covered throughout your course and with this project you’ll gain your first experience of the design process. You’ll find that an appreciation of the design and construction of aircraft will be essential for your understanding of aviation technology. 

In the professional world aircraft design is carried out by groups of engineers rather than by individuals so to reflect that this project is structured around group work. You’ll be assigned to a group of students and you’ll tackle the problem together. The result of the project will be marked individually to ensure that everyone in the group contributes.

Year two

Your first project in Year two will involve choosing a major airline that’s either failing financially or not living up to its potential. You’ll then design a new business model for it. You’ll go on to develop and implement a plan for training the airline’s senior management to deliver the new business model changes. This will be a group project, developing your skills as a member of a team who would be required to present at airline management level.

In your second project, you’ll develop and present a five-year business plan for a newly set-up business within the aviation industry. Examples of the types of business include: an airline; an air-taxi business; an airport; or a commercial flight training organisation. This is an individual project, leading to an understanding of the feasibility, marketing and financial aspects of setting up and running a business within the aviation industry.

Year three

In Year three your first project will be based on techniques used to enhance emergency preparedness. Half of the student group will develop a scenario for an aviation accident and present this at an accident hearing, in the form of eye witness accounts and expert evidence. The other half of the student group will investigate the accident and report on its primary causes and contributing factors. You’ll then swap roles for the second accident scenario.

The second project is set in 2021. You’ll take on the role of civil servants to write the next air transport government white paper, setting out options for UK civil aviation through to 2030 and beyond. In doing so, you’ll learn how to balance responding to ever increasing demand for air travel with the need to enhance the environmental sustainability of civil aviation.

In the Aviation Technology Team Project module, you’ll work in groups of two or three on a major aviation project to develop your team work, organisational skills and critical analysis abilities. To give you an idea of what this might involve, project choices for the current academic year include:

  • An in-depth study of the Gas Turbine Engine using the Gas Turbine laboratory.
  • An evaluation of the School’s Piper Seneca FNPT2 simulator as a training device, in conjunction with Advanced Flight Training to produce a programme of pilot training exercises and to arrange delivery of the training by qualified trainers. You’ll measure the effective outcomes of the training and produce a written account of your findings.
  • Working with AirTanker Services Ltd, which operates dual military/civilian-use aircraft, on a new design for aircraft re-configurability and in-flight entertainment.
  • Crew resource management: you’ll examine distraction factors that affect flight crew performance.
  • Air crash survivability: you’ll examine possible changes to cabin space seating and equipment to facilitate the survivability of passengers in the event of a crash landing.

Ioannis Matheos - BSc Aviation Technology with Pilot Studies

Throughout the first year there are a variety of assignments and projects to be undertaken, each requiring different skills and both application of the knowledge gained from the course as well as background experience.
Ioannis Matheos