The Department of Aeronautical Engineering was first established in 1993 under the Director of Academic Studies as a separate Department at KDU. Prior to its establishment, all Officer Cadets who were enlisted to the Technical Engineering branch of the Sri Lanka Air Force through KDU were awarded bachelorettes in Defence Studies based on a Mechanical Engineering background. Considering the requirements of the nation and the evolving technologies used within the Sri Lanka Air Force, the need was felt to establish an educational element which produced competent officers with a sound Aeronautical Engineering background. The first batch of Officer Cadets for the Aeronautical Engineering degree programme was enlisted to KDU in 1993 (Intake 11) and they were graduated in the year 1997.

The department of Aeronautical Engineering of the General Sir John Kotelawala Defence Academy is the only governmental institution facilitating a full time degree programme in Aeronautical Engineering in the country since the year 1993 and remains the same up to date. From 2012 onwards the department offers the four years full time BSc in Aeronautical Engineering degree programme for the Officer Cadets. In 1995, the first batch of Lady Officer Cadets consisting of four cadets was enlisted to the KDU for the Aeronautical Engineering degree programme. From its inception, the department has produced larger number competent Aeronautical Engineers, both male and female officers, to the Technical Engineering Branch of the Sri Lanka Air Force.

In 2011, the Department saw a milestone in its history when it was recognized by the Quality Assurance Accreditation Council of the University Grants Commission of Sri Lanka. With the continued expansions that have occurred in the University, the Faculty of Engineering was formed in late 2011, and the department presently functions under the Faculty of Engineering. In 2013, the first batch of Day Scholars consisting of 18 students was inducted opening doors of the department to civilian students as well.

Being the pioneer Aeronautical Engineering department in Sri Lanka, currently department offers three degree programmes, Namely BSc in Engineering in Aeronautical Engineering (1993), BSc in Engineering in Aircraft Maintenance Engineering (2013) and BSc (Hons) in Aircraft Maintenance (2018) for both military and civil students. The BSc (Hons) in Aircraft Maintenance is a collaborative degree programme conducted by KDU with the SriLankan Airlines.

The Department has its own Aeronautical Engineering laboratory which is equipped with an Educational Wind Tunnel (EWT), Bell 212 helicopter working model, Turbine & Piston aircraft engine models and an array test equipment and components to provide in-house practical training for the students. Further, the department also in possession of one Mi-24 helicopter, one Cessna 337 aircraft, three SF – 260 W aircraft and one IA -58 Pucara aircraft to facilitate practical training. Further, practical training sessions and workshops are conducted at the University Aeronautical Engineering laboratory, Engineering and flying formations in Sri Lanka Air Force, as well in the main hangar and flight simulators at SriLankan Airlines.

The department is having the honour of being a Corporate Partner of the Royal Aeronautical Society, in United Kingdom since 2014.



To be the prominent global leader for conducting world class education and research in Aeronautical Engineering and Aircraft Maintenance Engineering.

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To provide a value driven learning and research platform for the students to acquire knowledge and professional skills in Aeronautical Engineering and Aircraft Maintenance Engineering and empower graduates to shoulder higher responsibilities for the development of the local and global aviation industry.



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