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Flight lieutenant & flight test engineer

Rosemary - test flight engineer

A lifetime fascination with flight led Rosemary to an adventurous career in the Air Force

As a flight test engineer, Rosemary’s job is to assess the handling, performance or systems of different aircraft to make sure they are up to the task. This involves planning the different manoeuvres that need to be tested, monitoring the test flight and analysing the data collected.

Best job ever

Rosemary studied aeronautical engineering and was appointed to the RAAF in 2016. In 2020, she was selected by the RAAF to attend the prestigious Empire Test Pilots’ School in the United Kingdom, where she became a European Union Aviation Safety Agency: Category 1 Flight Test Engineer (Fixed Wing). She also completed a Postgraduate Certificate in Flight Test and Flight Dynamics while she was there.

“One of my favourite memories was at the start of my course in the UK, when one of my instructors took me ‘cloud bashing’,” she says. “I had to fly the aircraft and use its wings to gently graze the clouds around us. It was one of those unbelievable, awe-inspiring, ‘How is this even my life?!’ kind of moments.

“Since I was a child, I have wanted to be a part of the technology that enables giant metal beasts to seamlessly glide through the skies.”

Rosemary’s path to becoming a test flight engineer

  • Bachelor of Aeronautical Engineering (Honours)
  • Aerospace engineering officer-in-training, RAAF
  • Aerial delivery design engineer, RAAF
  • Flight Test Engineering EASA Cat 1 Qualification, Empire Test Pilots’ School (UK)
  • Master of Systems Engineering (Test and Evaluation), UNSW@ADFA
  • Flight test engineer, RAAF

This profile was originally published in the special edition of Careers with STEM: Defence. Find more STEM + Defence role models here!

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