Online safety design training for working engineers

Aviation-based safety principles can apply to any system, from submarines to rockets.

Online Safety Design Training for Working Engineers| Aerogram Magazine | Purdue University School of Aeronautics and Astronautics

Online safety design training for working engineers

A new online course at Purdue is filling a gap in safety design education. Based on a request from industry, AAE professor Karen Marais is showing engineers how to make safe design an integral part of their process.

"We need to work against the 'safety guys are spoiling the fun again' mindset. If we think about safety from the beginning, it's much easier to do it well, rather than finish the design and say, 'Okay, how now do we make this safe?'" Marais says.

Thinking ahead to potential safety problems can reduce costs and give better results. Adding redundancy doesn't help if, for example, both engines have the same defect. Though the course is based on civil aviation processes, the methods taught can apply to any system, from submarines to rockets.

Marais gave this course maximum flexibility for working professionals. "We've taken it to a whole new level. There are no in-class presentations. It's completely online, asynchronous, and self-driven. And unlike many continuing education courses, students receive individualized feedback on their assignments. This approach helps them to really engage with the material in a way that's hard to do when you just watch a series of lectures."

The course, Principles and Methods of Safe Aero System Design, can also be taken for college credit. Visit in summer 2024 to sign up.

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