Cristina Calero Calatayud BEng, MSc, ARAeS – Lifecycle Engineer, Rolls-Royce Defence, Bristol

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I have always known that to feel fulfilled at my job I needed to find a place where I could contribute to build a better and safer future.  I studied an Aerospace Engineering Degree and complemented it with a MSc in Aeronautical Engineering, which allowed me to acquire the required technical knowledge, but also shape my brain to be able to face complex engineering problems.  Once I finished my studies and after couple of summer internships, I embarked myself on a job-hunting journey.  I wanted to find a place where I could use the acquired skills and technical knowledge to drive improvements and guarantee a safer future of aviation.  I joined Rolls-Royce as a Graduate Engineer and move around the business through 4 different rotations to finally land on the Service Aftermarket department where I currently work as a Lifecycle Engineer.


As a Lifecycle Engineer within the Service Aftermarket department at Rolls-Royce I work analysing in-service engine data and investigating customer issues with the final goal of providing technical support to guarantee customer fleet availability and safe operations.

There is not such a typical day working in Services.  One needs to be ready to face any situation and apply technical knowledge to resolve any customer issue or query.  Therefore, resilience and flexibility are key skills for Lifecycle Engineers, as well as understanding and following processes which are essential to guarantee the robustness of any investigation.  Depending on the day you can see yourself organising sessions with customers, discussing findings with subject matter experts, leading root-cause analysis investigations or writing up conclusions and recommendations to make sure lessons learned are kept for the future.


 The most exciting part of my role is without any doubt the feeling of contributing to guarantee the safety and reliability of the final product.  Working as an engineer can be hard sometimes, especially when working in complex long-term projects, as it is easy to lose perspective and forget the final goal for which your specific task is important.  However, Service Aftermarket provides that direct contact with the customer and the final product which helps understanding where daily tasks fit on the big puzzle.


Common sense and logical reasoning are a must for any engineer, especially if your role is related with safety.  When tasks are not specialised on a particular area of the engine, it is important to get that tradeoff between understanding the details and looking at the bigger picture.  Finally, for anyone who wants to start their career in the Aerospace world, I cannot stress more the importance of being able to understand and follow procedures, this is by far the most valuable advice I can give to anyone willing to work in this field.

Aerostories #Pilots #Engineering #Operations

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