Engineering Facilities

Engineering at USW

Our dedicated engineering facilities include an Aerospace Centre, which houses its very own aircraft, a suite of practical training facilities approved by the aerospace industry, and electronics labs supplemented with world-leading Renesas technologies. 

We have continually update our facilities so you have access to the latest industry-standard equipment and software. We believe this hands-on experience is vital to your success as you will be able to apply the right skills in the workplace.

Aerospace Centre

Engineering Facilities: Aerospace

The aerospace industry has become increasingly competitive and in recognising this, the University has recently invested £3.3 million into its aerospace facilities. The investment includes a two-storey extension to our Aerospace Centre has added 1,000m2 of dedicated practical workshop and laboratory space for engineering students.

Facilities available to our students have been fully approved by the Civil Aviation Authority (CAA). With access to an EASA-approved suite of practical training facilities, our students can use a range of industry-standard facilities. Facilities include a gas turbine maintenance workshop, simulated aircraft shell riveting area, hand tools workshops and welding bay, plus clean and dirty composite workshops for specimens and repairs. Dedicated laboratory space for electronic practical tasks, avionics systems, hydraulics and pneumatics are also a key feature of providing a hands-on practical experience for our students.

Our Aerospace Centre is also home to two aircraft hangars with civil and military aircraft, and a full motion, three axes Merlin MP521 flight simulator can be programmed for several aircraft types that include the Airbus A320 and the Cessna 150. We also have a sub-sonic wind tunnel which is used for basic aerodynamic instruction, testing and demonstrations on various aerofoil shapes and configurations.

Engineering Workshops

Engineering Facilities: Civil

Civil engineering facilities include new laboratories for structures, materials and geotechnics. These allow us to demonstrate fundamental engineering principles and help you carry out project and research work. We test steel, concrete and masonry lintels, together with other structural materials, to improve product design and discover new methods of construction.


We also have dedicated workshop space for mechanical engineering. Our mechanical engineering facilities are of the standard you would expect to see in industry. They include well-equipped computer rooms using state-of-the-art design and analysis software (SolidWorks, Ansys, LS-Dyna, SolidCAM, and Phoenix), and dedicated project and workshop spaces.

Our workshops boast a laser cutter, 4 axis CNC router, rapid prototyping machine, Coordinate Measuring Machine (CMM) and Computer Numerical Controlled (CNC) lathe and milling machines. We also have our own augmented reality welding training simulator, flight simulator, two wind tunnels, and gas turbine plant. Additional laboratory space is also equipped for composite making, additive manufacturing, welding, aluminium casting, and material and non-destructive testing.

Electrical and Electronic Suites

Michael Scott, Electrical and Electronic Engineering graduate

We have three suites that include an embedded systems lab, general electronics lab, and power and renewable lab. Our embedded systems lab contains 25 high-end terminals that run cutting-edge development tools that have been designed in conjunction with our sponsor, Renesas – the world’s leading supplier of microcontrollers. This sponsorship means our students are taught using the most up-to-date technologies and development tools.

The general electronics lab is split into three sections – Computer Aided Design (CAD) and embedded systems, practical electronics, and communication engineering. You will learn how to use industry-standard software, construct prototypes, build and test printed circuit boards and use a range of equipment such as oscilloscopes and signal generators. In the communication engineering section, you will undertake experimental set-ups to support your understanding of theoretical principles. These set-ups include analogue and digital modulation schemes, microwave antennas, time and frequency division multiplexing, coding, transmission lines and fibre optics.

The power and renewable energy lab is where you will learn about the key components and construction skills involved in planning, designing, building and testing electronic circuits which are used in micro renewable energy systems, analyse performances and produce feasibility reports. Equipment you will find yourself using includes a photovoltaic solar energy unit, wind energy unit and lab-volt stations.

Technology Studios

Engineering Facilities: Lighting

On our Lighting, Sound and Live Event Production courses, you'll have access to a range of specialist facilities at our ATRiuM campus in Cardiff's city centre. You will work in our television and sound studios, video and show networking laboratory and the University theatre, to put your skills into practise and realise your designs.

We benefit from the proximity of, and links with many local venues, including: Cardiff arena, major BBC TV studios, Cardiff stadium, cinemas, concert venues, recording studios and world-class theatres.


Watch our 360° Video Tours

Take a closer look at some of our learning facilities for engineering students. Our  360° video tours let you pan the room, as our students undertake practical activities in our engineering workshops. If you'd like to explore more of the campus, you can check out our Treforest Campus online by viewing our virtual tours, or why not see the campus and our facilities first-hand at one of our forthcoming Open Days?