Defence and aerospace

The defence agencies and commercial aerospace industry offer a wealth of opportunities for physicists, from communication solutions and weapons and guidance technology, to software design and component engineering. Around 1% of those with physics degrees move into the combined armed forces each year, which accounts for a significant number of top-end graduates.
Case study: Diverse opportunities in defence

Working at the UK’s defence laboratory gives Gareth Brown the ability to apply his physics and mathematics knowledge to real-world applications – and not necessarily in the ways you might expect.

Case study: Looking for space

Kyle Palmer describes how his childhood dream of space travel led to a career at Europe's largest satellite firm

Case study: Mixing physics and engineering

As an engineer in the naval-nuclear division of Rolls-Royce, Steven Lawler sees himself as an ambassador for physicists working in an engineering environment.

Case study: Operations research needs physicists

Operations researcher Stephen Coulson explains how a physicist's skills are valued in a varied and interdisciplinary field that has expanded far beyond its defence origins

Case study: Physicists at Aldermaston

The UK's nuclear warheads are designed and maintained by the staff of the Atomic Weapons Establishment. Stephen White explains the vital role played by researchers there.