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Writing as an Aerospace Engineer?

  1. Jan 28, 2015 #1
    Greetings, I am writing a paper for my university English class. The purpose of it is to recognize or acknowledge the amount of writing (or lack thereof) in our future career choice. As an Aerospace Engineering major, I want to find out if writing is a big part of Aerospace Engineering. I have several questions I would like answers to:

    1. What kind of writing do you do in your job?
    2. What types of texts do you produce?
    3. What are the potential consequences of unclear writing?
    4. Are there any specific guidelines one must follow when writing in your job?
    5. Do you frequently communicate with other disciplines? If yes, then who?
    6. What would you consider an "official" source of information when looking for info in this field? Where would you find it?
    7. How often do you write to people within your field? How often do you write documents/letters/emails to an "outside" audience (like the general public)?
    8. Does the way you write to the general public(if you do) differ from the way you write to fellow engineers? Why or why not?

    Feel free to answer even if you aren't an Aerospace Engineers! Anything helps! Thank you!
  2. jcsd
  3. Jan 28, 2015 #2
    I think it doesn't really matter which kind of engineer you are - Writing will be very important. I am an E.E. Engineer working in the space industry. Now to answer your questions:

    1) Emails are an ever present thing. Both internal emails with questions and answers, and external emails to industry partners or ESA and NASA representatives. However, the biggest part of writing is the documentation. Technical Documents and Non-Technical Documents with analyses and reporting about tests and design of products.

    2) I write Design Reports, Test Reports, Test Procedures, Technical Notes, Analysis Reports, Requirements Analysis, Verification Documents etc.

    3) Unclear writing will make it problematic to co-operate between departments and also, for the documents which will be reviyewed by NASA and ESA representatives, it needs to be clear why we are doing the stuff we're doing, what we did and how we did it.

    4) We produce documents using a given format, many times these formats are given by NASA and ESA.

    5) All the time. Depends on the product we are developing. Internally I work closely with our Mechanical department and Software Department.

    6) Technical Notes from industry. Documents I can find from universities. Books. (Physics Forums ;) )

    7) I write documentation and emails every day (in general). Sometimes much, sometimes only a few lines.

    8) Not necesarily. It all depends on the context and what I am writing. I try to be clear and precise in what I write (in all cases), staying clear of ambiguity.
  4. Feb 4, 2015 #3
    Thank you so much!
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