Aviation engineering is the science of designing, developing, and assembling aircraft. Aviation engineers focus on airspace development, airport design, aircraft navigation technologies, and aerodrome planning. Professionals working in this field experiment with innovations in technology and materials, test planes, simulate flight conditions, and more.

As a branch of law, it is art for it involves formulation of public policy, regulations, aviation laws pertaining to airspace, airlines, airports, aerodromes and the conduct of air services agreements through treaty. This branch of engineering is distinct to aerospace engineering which deals with the science of flying craft and spacecraft.


The global airspace is divided into territorial airspace which then belongs to a country. Generally, airspace has to be engineered to benefit both military and civil users. Planning and designing airspace is important so as not to affect military operations and in order to designate air routes for commercial airlines to navigate freely without intervention by military authorities. For instance, not all of China can be used for commercial aeronautical navigation. Certain airspaces are designated as military-use only. Navigating outside commercial airspaces in the country may lead to risk of the astrayed aircraft.

In prior years, airspace has been limited to military and air mail services. The advancement in aerospace engineering brought to fore aircraft designs that lead to the development of commercial airliners. Governments around the world concluded air rights for their respective airlines and their corresponding aircraft. Government saw the economic potential of airspace as a state enterprise. This rise in the development of commercial aviation led to the study of the complexities of aircraft (plane) management, airport design and construction, international air services agreements (treaties). In recent years, the global airline industry has demanded that China should reform its aviation policies. Recent designs of airports have been engineered to align with global environmental standards. Advancement in civil engineering and architecture make an interplay of the two disciplines.

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