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Suggested degrees to be a Defense Systems Engineer?

  1. May 6, 2013 #1
    I understand this type of field can involve many different specializations, and people who work in this field often work as part of a team to focus on very specific parts of a weapon/defense system, etc. With that said, I am not necessarily looking to work in this field, but rather I want the knowledge for my own personal hobby applications. As far as hobbies, I want to have the knowledge to be able to build various defense systems around my house, and maybe even start a private weapons/security company one day.

    A family member suggested that I could start with an Associates in Robotics Engineering, since many weapons/defense systems involve moving parts and smart detection of certain variables. After that do 2 more years and get my Bachelors in another Engineering field, whether it be Mechanical, Electronic, of Software engineer.

    My dilemma is that I am not sure which of these fields would best complement the robotic engineering in building these certain technologies. Like, would I learn various circuit building, and chipset programming in robotics engineering? It might be worth mentioning that I have about 12 years experience in software programming/scripting as a teenager, and is something I consider myself skilled in.

    I'm basically asking what 4 year path would be the most efficient if I wanted to build these types of systems, in their entirety, as a hobby by myself. The kinds of things I am interested in building for around my house are high-tech security systems, various lockdown systems that could lockdown the house from the inside, etc... just to give you a few ideas.

    I don't really care what field I work in as a 9-5 since my financial situations would not require me to stay in it for very long anyways. Eitherway, I am highly skilled in my ability to do/learn many technical/mathematic fields and can see myself doing just about anything in those related fields, which is why I want to focus them around my intended hobbies.
  2. jcsd
  3. May 6, 2013 #2

    D H

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    Systems engineers don't concern themselves with systems that can be built in their entirety as a one-person hobby project. Systems engineering skills don't help solve that kind of problem. Domain-specific knowledge is needed. Systems engineering is about addressing problems that only rear their ugly head in building large (very large) multidisciplinary systems.
  4. May 6, 2013 #3
    I didn't know there was such a thing as what you are describing. I pulled the phrase "defense systems" out of my *** to describe all sorts of electronic devices, whether they me war weaponry, high tech physical security for buildings, etc.

    I just want to know what type of degree/field/set of degrees would most widely encompass this sort of knowledge. Of course no 1 or 2 fields is going teach me every single thing there is to know about building everything.... I'm talking about strictly general knowledge here. I can do my own personal research into specializing various tech but what I'm looking for is a field where I can learn the general basics that would apply to most of what I am wanting.... Of course that field will involve specializing in something, but what specialized field/s will allow me to get the most general knowledge that can connect these areas as possible?

    Not sure how to word it more clearly than that lol.
  5. May 6, 2013 #4


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    Electrical Engineering is going to be at the heart of any of type types of devices you seem to be interested in but to do it all yourself, you'd need at least an EE and an ME.
  6. May 6, 2013 #5
    In 4 years I could get an Assc. in Robotics Engineering and a BS. in Electrical Engineering, then later down the line study some ME.

    Though, the thing is I don't really know what Mechanical Engineering is. I know the specializations like Aerospace Engineering and such, but is it even possible to get a general degree in ME?
  7. May 8, 2013 #6
    I've worked in Defence systems integration (in Australia) with degrees in computer science.

    BUT the big trend here is to study engineering instead of science, because of low unemployment & more interesting jobs for engineers. Also in Australia there are so many new mines opening & engineers are needed.
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