Interior Aircraft Equipment Design Education and Training

By Terri Deno, writer
Dec 30, 2010
Image Credit: Monkeybusinessimages / Getty Images

Choose the best training for designing custom aircraft interiors

Aircraft interior products are in demand, especially amongst those who have the money to design their own private aircraft. In order to provide custom aircraft interiors a designer must be trained in the basics of design, but also more specifically in airplane interior design. Aircraft designers have a limited amount of space to work with, and should be familiar with equipment they must work around to develop a design does not interfere with the function of the plane.

After completing courses in general design, many people seek degrees in aerospace engineering with a concentration in airplane design. Interior aircraft equipment design education and training comes in many forms, including:

1. Learning tools of the trade, like aircraft interior design software.

2. Traditional universities that offer degrees in aircraft design and aerospace engineering.

3. Examples of specific design elements used in various types of aircraft, from helicopters to large commercial jets.

Choose an aeronautics school that provides training for designing and using aircraft interior parts

Many universities do not have a specific major geared toward interior aircraft design. However, most schools do have an aerospace engineering major that provides many concentration areas, including exterior and interior aircraft design.
Arizona State University provides many different concentrations for the aerospace engineering degree, including an interior design concentration that teaches students to develop airplane seats to the windows. Iowa State University also has a highly regarded aerospace technology center that teaches interior and exterior design.

Learn about the tools needed to design airline interiors

Aside from traditional design training, those interested in working with interior aircraft equipment will also need to familiarize themselves with common design tools used in the industry. This can range from traditional drawing tools up to software programs that make designing quick and easy.
Autodesk offers training for its software, so you can learn about designing vehicles and interiors with 2D and 3D options. Siemens provides online self-paced training and custom training options to learn how to use its PLM software.

Explore schools and programs that offer apprenticeships for airplane interior equipment design

If you are considering with an aircraft interior supplier or custom designer, there are many internship and apprenticeship opportunities available. These will give you hands-on design experience and a chance to work with professionals outside the classroom.
Virgina Tech offers and aircraft design program that integrates classroom knowledge with first-hand experience. Students are assigned to apprenticeships throughout the course of their education. The School of Interior Design provides basic information on educational requirements for those studying aircraft design, which includes internships and apprenticeships with design firms.
  • Learning by example is another way to supplement your design education. The best way to learn about what works is to look at examples of airplane interiors, interior products and different configurations for an specific aircraft you'll work with.
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