We have been at the forefront of keeping the UK safe and secure for over 70 years and offer unique careers in defence electronics. AWE
Aldermaston or Burghfield (Berkshire)
Type of Placements Offered
• 12-month placements • Summer and 6-month MEng placements also offered (following completion of a 12-month placement)
(1) Requires 12-month placement for 2024/25. Additional summer or 6-month MEng placements in later years also offered; (2) Open only to British citizens (no dual nationals); (3) Candidates required to undergo security clearance; (4) No first year students
Multiple new scholarships
Who we are and what we do
Engineer the Extraordinary!
AWE is at the start of a once-in-a-generation work programme that will ensure we protect the UK for decades to come. We have been assigned a critical mission by the UK Government:
- to protect the UK from nuclear threats such as terrorism and the contravention of international treaties
- to provide the warheads for the UK’s current nuclear deterrent – Trident
- to design, develop, manufacture and maintain the warheads for future nuclear deterrents
Engineering, in all its forms, is key to the success of our business and electronics is at the core of our products and infrastructure. We have some of the best engineering facilities in the world, such as our state-of the-art Virtual Reality Suite and Orion – one of Europe’s most powerful lasers.
You will have the opportunity to work in a genuinely inclusive environment with some of the most advanced research, design and production facilities in the world and with internationally recognised experts who are leaders in their fields. When you join our ‘One Engineering’ team you will be supported to develop your skills and competence both technically and professionally, through to chartership and beyond.
Our expertise, our people and the work we do are truly innovative. When you join us, you will gain a strong feeling of satisfaction that you are making a real difference to yourself, to AWE and to the safety and security of the UK.
What you could be doing during your work placement
AWE offers a broad range of engineering opportunities across the product development lifecycle from conceptual design through to system disposal.
You will have the opportunity to contribute to the UK’s National Nuclear Deterrence and Nuclear Security. The engineering challenges are unique and diverse and you will be working with engineering experts often in state-of-the-art engineering facilities.
Projects may include but are not limited to:
- Conceptual research and development of high integrity electronics control and embedded software systems
- Design and development of pulse power systems and high voltage/current switching circuits
- Systems and software lifecycle management
- Developing and implementing instrumentation systems to support environmental trials and test programmes
- Developing methods, tools and techniques for engineering design, development and test
- Engineering support to the National Nuclear Security operations team
- Engineering support to the design and manufacturing agencies
- Engineering design modelling and analysis
- System performance, safety, reliability and security assessments
Meet one of our Scholars
University: University of Nottingham
Degree Course: MEng Electrical and Electronic Engineering
What appeals to me about Electronics?
The electronics field is extremely open and exciting, with so many options throughout university and many more after. On my placement is it plain to see how important electronics is and how it fits into everything around us. Electronics as a subject is so important to the advancement of lots of different fields and moving forward into a sustainable world. Being at the forefront of this and making a difference to so many people’s lives is an opportunity difficult to resist!
Why I chose AWE?
AWE is an exciting company with so much to offer. The scholarship gave me a great opportunity to work with some of the best engineers and scientists in the world at the forefront of nuclear safety, a topic that is essential to keeping the country and our way of life as it is. At AWE there is lots of promising technology that I’ve never had the chance to use. The electronics program spans lots of different areas within electronics, with the company being open to ideas and helping find a mutually beneficial position for me to work on new projects.
My placement and its value
On my placement, after only a month I am getting on with more than one project. I have got a few projects developing, one is working with new technology carrying out new testing based on charge with new objects within the company. I have chosen to pursue a very hands-on roll at the company so I can get see the changes and provide tangible results to my peers! This has shown me new strengths and highlighted where I can improve and advance technically and personally outside of the academic world.
Outside of work most of my time is taken up by sports, playing badminton and football. Last year I played for the electrical and electronic engineers society football team. I also go to the gym as regularly as I can because I feel it is a great way to clear my head in the evenings and get away from any stresses.
Meet one of our Engineers
Job Title: Dynamic Modelling Engineer
Why I chose to work for AWE
I graduated with a BEng (Hons) in Robotics and Cybertronics from Heriot-Watt University.
The thing that impressed me most about AWE when I was considering who to apply for was the company’s commitment to the training and development of its staff. Like most people who work here, I was also keen to make a meaningful contribution to the defence of our nation.
When I left university, I wasn’t sure exactly what I wanted to do. But another great thing about AWE is the flexibility; you are able to move around and try different things. So when you want a new challenge, there’s no need to uproot and move to a different company.
In my current role
I create dynamic models of systems and investigate and improve the dynamic modelling tools and techniques we use. I am the Technical Lead for this work area, which means that I get to decide the direction we should take and make that happen. I also hold the role of Verification and Validation Lead on a collaborative project we’re tackling with colleagues in the US.
I’ve only been here two years but already I’ve been offered loads of great opportunities and responsibility. As well as the chance to work with different people and travel to America. I’ve also completed a number of placements within the company. One of which involved working as part of the safety interlock team on the ORION laser project.
If you’re thinking of applying to AWE
I’d say go for it. When you graduate, it’s important to work for a company that will support your ongoing development. And one that will apply the theory you’ve learnt at university to some real and challenging projects. Not all companies can do that, but AWE can.
I aim to achieve chartered status and gain another promotion, then take my technical area on to new levels of innovation. I’d also like to be the technical lead on a project in the future.