|Placement location||Type of Placements Offered||Restrictions/Notes|
|Aldermaston or Burghfield, Berkshire||
|* (1) Requires 12-month placement for 2022/23; (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
Keeping our world safe and secure AWE is proud to play a central role in the defence of the UK. We have been at the forefront of nuclear deterrence for over 60 years. Providing security and protection to our nation we deliver and maintain the warheads for the UK deterrent.
Engineering, be it mechanical, electrical, electronic, chemical, structural or construction, is key to the success of our business. We have some of the best engineering facilities in the world, a prime example of which is our state-of the-art Virtual Reality Suite – a unique capability that uses 3D animations as a great way of viewing and understanding assembly sequences, component interfaces and design layouts.
From delivering and maintaining both new and existing utilities and facilities that support our programme – to the design, manufacturing, and verification of our product – engineering is vital to the delivery of the UK deterrent, keeping our world safe and secure.
You will have the opportunity to work 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. Once you join our company, you will be provided with support to develop your skills and competence in your chosen discipline. In the longer term, you can choose to specialise or pursue a broader management career – we attach equal importance to both career paths.
Our expertise, our people and the work we do are truly innovative.
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 UKESF Scholars
MEng Electronic Engineering and Computer Science
Why I chose to study Electronics
I have had an interest in electronics in some shape or form since I was a child. I would create small circuits with motors and fans on a hobby level when I was of primary school age, and I progressively became more interested in electronics as the years went by. Electronics has always been a way for me to problem solve and express my creativity, so choosing to study it at university was a natural choice. The future is in electronics, and the ability to be involved in innovation and creation is my major motivation to stay involved in the field. As electronics is a rapidly evolving field with constant progression and development, I believe it will keep me interested and motivated well into the future.
Why I chose to work for AWE
The chance to contribute to the collective national security of the nation, while simultaneously having the opportunity of being exposed to niche technologies while on placement is what motivated me to apply. Upon completing an assessment day it became more clear that I would also have a number of personal development opportunities if I chose to work for AWE, such as the guidance to apply for the IET EngTech. This blend of development opportunities and a specialised tech environment is what motivated me to make the decision to work for AWE.
My time at AWE
During my time on placement I was part of the Applied Engineering group. My placement work itself took me away from my perceived strengths in hardware and I spent my time developing software. This was an incredible opportunity to enhance my skillset in a professional environment. This experience gave me a greater understanding of software optimisation, its effects on hardware resources and engineering processes. While on placement I also applied for the IET EngTech and was successful in attaining this first step in the journey of professional registration.
My hobbies and interests
Aside from academics I keep quite busy. I am a long-standing member of my university computer science society and have held several committee roles during my time as a member. I am also a member of the Electronics Society at University. I also enjoy long country walks and connecting with nature, my favourite activity is reaching the top of a waterfall and admiring the view.
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.