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Systems Engineer - Electronic Systems - Industrial Placement

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From the initial design concept, to the production-ready product and then in-service support, Systems Engineers play a key role at BAE Systems, Rochester.

Systems Engineers provide the detailed product and domain knowledge needed to develop products that will address our customers’ continually increasing capability needs whilst ensuring the required levels of safety are maintained.

The diverse range of products designed, manufactured and supported at Rochester includes:-

  • Head Up Displays –providing flight and mission data symbology that is visible to pilots while they are looking forwards out of the cockpit.  Our Systems Engineers need to exploit the graphics and processing capabilities of our products to provide the increasing performance demands in a wide range of operating conditions.
  • Helmet Mounted Displays –providing similar data as for Head Up Displays that is visible to pilots regardless of where they are looking from the cockpits of military fast jets and helicopters.
  • Active Inceptor Systems – world-leading systems that increase aircraft capabilities whilst reducing pilot workload.  Pilot stick & throttle controls for military fast jets and commercial airliners and cyclic & collective controls for military helicopters are designed and manufactured at Rochester.  Our Systems Engineers push the capabilities of currently available technologies whilst maintaining the stringent safety-critical requirements.
  • Diesel-Electric Hybrid Propulsion Systems - designed and produced by BAE Systems and currently in service in buses in towns and cities across England, Scotland and Europe.  Our Systems Engineers are working closely with bus manufacturers and our design engineers to ensure that we supply a product that meets the varied requirements of our customers by improving fuel economy, reducing emissions and maintaining driving performance.
  • Flight Control Computers – providing the complex processing requirements of modern fly-by-wire military jets and commercial airliners.  Our Systems Engineers develop the multi-redundant architectures that process sensor inputs and execute the control laws that command aircraft control surface movement, whilst providing monitoring to meet the high-integrity requirements.
  • Mission System Computers - at the heart of any fast jet avionics suite and also used in mobile soldier systems.  Systems Engineering is critical for achieving mapping, symbology and situational awareness capabilities using a common set of interfaces and functions.  New capabilities at Rochester have enabled us to produce modular computing components to aid rapid development within this product group.

What you will be doing… (Role Duties and Responsibilities)

As a Systems Engineer, at BAE Systems you will be immediately be thrown in to the mix on an exciting project. You can expect to be introduced to a team that will help you get up to speed very quickly so you can begin to contribute to new and exciting technologies. There are possibilities to be assigned to work on a range of products such as Head Up Displays (HUDs), Helmet Displays, Control Systems or Active Sticks.

In the early project stages, as part of the continuous research and development opportunities at Rochester, Systems Engineers will investigate available and emerging technologies in order to apply this knowledge to the required system.  Systems Engineers are also responsible for the system architecture and design definitions that are fundamental to our products.

As a project matures, the Systems Engineers have the overall responsibility for managing the customer requirements to ensure that the product remains compliant, providing risk mitigation where applicable. Systems Engineers also perform a more hands-on role when supporting System Integration and Testing, Environmental and EMC Qualification and Acceptance Testing.

Details of some Typical Systems Engineering placements are provided below:

’During my first 6 months as a Graduate Systems Engineer, I was placed with the Bombardier SFECU (Slat Flap Electronic Control Unit) team. I was thrown straight in, and was welcomed as part of the team; which was great. During the first 3 months I had to get up to speed with the project and my role as a Systems Engineer. This was an excellent learning opportunity and proved to be vital for the following months. I was placed with the Systems Verification and Validation team, who were writing and commissioning tests, to fully verify the system against our customer requirements. I started by shadowing a few members of the team and building up my confidence by helping them complete some of their tasks. I learnt a new programming language which is unique to BAE Systems but similar to C and understood the importance of testing and process, in a safety critical system. I have also gained experience with requirements management tools, system design tools; whilst building on my communication and team working skills. These first 6 months were invaluable, and have shaped my career at BAE Systems Rochester.’

Victoria Roots, Graduate Systems Engineer, Commercial Avionics, BAE Systems Rochester

’As a Systems Engineer, once you join BAE SYSTEMS you will be immediately be thrown in to the mix on an exciting project. You can expect to be introduced to a team that will help you get up to speed very quickly so you can begin to contribute to new and exciting technologies. There are possibilities to be assigned to work on a range of products such as Head Up Displays (HUDs), Helmets or Active Sticks. 

Once a basic understanding of the product and has been gained, which you will pick up as you go along, you will be given a range of tasks so that you can experience all the factors that go in to being a skilled Systems Engineer. You will be able to take a step back and look at the entire system as a whole, which will allow you to see how all other disciplines such as mechanical, hardware, software etc. integrate to produce the final product.’

Rishi Gandhi, Graduate Systems Engineer, Display Systems, BAE Systems Rochester 

Entry Requirements and what we are looking for

To apply, you’ll need to be on course for achieving a 2:2 Bachelor’s degree.  Courses which include or are similar to the following subjects: Systems Engineering, Physics, Optics, Software Engineering, Electronic and Electrical, Systems Engineering Management, Systems Architecture, Embedded Systems Engineering, Aircraft Systems Engineering, Space Systems Engineering, Computer Systems Engineering, Control Systems Engineering, Mechanical Systems, Avionics, Aeronautics, Mathematics.

Overview of Business Unit

The Electronic Systems sector spans the commercial and defence electronics markets with a broad portfolio of mission-critical electronic systems, including flight and engine controls; electronic warfare and night vision systems; surveillance and reconnaissance sensors; secure networked communications equipment; geospatial imagery intelligence products and systems; mission management; and power-and energy-management  systems.

Headquartered in Nashua, New Hampshire, ES employs approximately 13,000 people globally, with engineering and manufacturing functions around the world, primarily in the United States and United Kingdom.

From digital helmet-mounted displays to cutting-edge flight controls, our employees in Rochester, UK, design, develop and produce some of the world’s most advanced avionics equipment spanning both the commercial and defence markets. We also provide world-leading aftermarket support and in-service repair for aircraft fleets around the globe, and delivers innovative propulsion and power management systems to transit markets across the United Kingdom and Europe.

If you have the imagination and determination to be involved in industry-changing innovations every day, then you’ll be a perfect fit for our Electronic Systems business.

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