Available in 2022
Course code



10 units


4000 level

Course handbook


This course develops a detailed understanding of the range of systems typical on complex modern aircraft, including sensors and actuators, flight control, navigation, flight management, engine management, power, communication, display, data bus and other avionics technologies. It takes a systems engineering perspective and addresses the complex interplay, and the design and integration issues between the many subsystems of an aircraft. The course will cover important aspects of reliability, robustness, redundancy, validation and verification in the systems engineering process. The syllabus will contain substantial case studies to reaffirm these lessons with examples from incidents and accidents in aeronautical history. Students will gain experience from group activities involving systems engineering practice.



  • Semester 1 - 2022

Learning outcomes

On successful completion of the course students will be able to:

1. Describe typical aircraft systems and their functions.

2. Analyse and appraise system performance and interoperability.

3. Exercise systems engineering principles and procedures in complex system specification, design and evaluation processes.

4. Critically assess complex aerospace systems using a ‘systems of systems’ approach.

5. Participate effectively in systems engineering practices in groups.

6. Communicate engineering information effectively both orally and in writing.


  1. History of aeronautical systems.
  2. Introduction to aerospace systems. Power systems, wiring and cabling, sensors and actuators, hydraulic systems, communications systems, bus systems, display systems, avionics systems, flight control systems, navigation systems, life support systems, simulation systems, hardware-in-the-loop testing systems etc.
  3. System design requirements, rules and regulations.
  4. System integration, operations and inter-operability. Systems engineering principles and procedures.
  5. System reliability, faults, fault tolerance, redundancy.
  6. System testing, validation and verification.
  7. Case studies – lessons in systems engineering from incidents and accidents.
  8. Group activities in system specification and design, and systems engineering.

Assumed knowledge

AERO2000 Aircraft Performance and Operations; AERO3000 Flight Dynamics; AERO3400 Aerospace Propulsion Systems; MCHA3400 Embedded Systems Engineering

Assessment items

Report: Aerospace System Assessment

Report: Systems Integration Laboratory

Quiz: Case Studies

Presentation: Aerospace System Integration Analysis

Contact hours



Face to Face On Campus 4 hour(s) per Week for Full Term

2x2 hours (4 hours/week) on separate days.


Face to Face On Campus 2 hour(s) per Week for Full Term

The University of Newcastle acknowledges the traditional custodians of the lands within our footprint areas: Awabakal, Darkinjung, Biripai, Worimi, Wonnarua, and Eora Nations. We also pay respect to the wisdom of our Elders past and present.