About the Department

A Hands On Program which focuses on Fundamental Knowledge and Integrated System Design in Aeronautics and Astronautics

First formed as an Aeronautical Engineering Department in 1927, the Aerospace Department has continually been at the forefront of Hands On and Learn-by-Doing education.  The purpose of the program was to teach students about the maintenance and repair of aircraft and their engines. Using a laboratory equipped with airframes, engines, propeller balancing equipment, and engine test stands, airplanes were dismantled, overhauled, and rebuilt.

A proud moment for the students and the department occurred in 1935 when Amelia Erhart, world-famous aviator, landed on campus for structural repairs on her plane.

Today, the Aerospace Engineering Department prepares students for work in the exciting field of aerospace engineering. Students are prepared for engineering work dealing with aerodynamics, propulsion, stability and controls, and structures of aircraft, missiles, and spacecraft. Throughout the four-year program, there is constant interplay between theory and application. Opportunities are available for advanced undergraduate and graduate work in the student's field of interest, with laboratories available for course work and research projects in:

  • Aircraft and Spacecraft Design
  • Propulsion
  • Structural Test and Analysis
  • Aerothermodynamics
  • Control Systems
  • Subsonic and Supersonic Wind Tunnels
  • Water Tunnel
  • Flight Simulation
  • Computational Fluid Dynamics
  • Finite Element Analysis
  • Unmanned Aerial Systems
  • Thermal Control
  • Orbital Debris Analysis
  • Nano-Satellite Design

The BS degree program in Aerospace Engineering is accredited by the Engineering Accreditation Commission of ABET, http://www.abet.org. Information on program enrollment and graduates is available via https://engineering.calpoly.edu/basic-facts-accreditation.