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Spotlight

UNAQ: Underpining Queretaro's Aerospace Industry

Fri, 12/01/2017 - 15:29

The Aeronautics University of Queretaro (UNAQ) is a public academic institution and training center focused on the formation of professionals and researchers for the blooming aeronautics sector in the state of Queretaro. It was created as part of the agreement between the state government and Bombardier Aerospace for the company to establish in the state. UNAQ is the only university in Mexico that focuses completely on aerospace studies.

The university has the installed capacity to train 1,195 students per term. UNAQ’s academic offer includes a technical degree in aeronautics manufacturing with a focus on precision machining and two others for aircraft maintenance centered on either avionics or gliders and engines. It also offers undergraduate engineering degrees in the areas of aeronautical manufacturing and mechanical design and aircraft electronics and control systems as well as graduate degrees in aerospace engineering and engineering sciences. UNAQ is strategically located inside the Queretaro Intercontinental Airport, 45km from state capital, Santiago de Queretaro. It has 11 workshops for machining, composite materials, electric assemblies, structural assemblies and other technical areas, and eight aircraft that are used as laboratories.

The Mexican-French campus for aeronautical studies — a project between UNAQ and CONALEP Aeronáutico — educates and trains technicians studying at both institutions. The program is supported by the Mexican and French governments, aeronautical companies and international aeronautical authorities. This project includes 15 laboratories related to coordinate-measuring machines, parts storage, aircraft systems, electricity and batteries, avionics, material resistance, thermic machines, engines, thermic processes and welding, penetrating liquids, chemical treatments, electronics, surface treatments, aerodynamics and metallography.

“To date, the university has trained over 7,000 technicians and almost 1,000 engineers and master’s degree holders,” according to Jorge Gutiérrez, Rector of UNAQ. Students who graduate from UNAQ usually work for local companies, such as Bombardier, Eurocopter, Aernnova, Tremec, ITP, Grupo Safran and TechOps. The university is involved in joint-aerospace projects, including a UAV and a composite materials project with SEDENA, flight simulators for pilot training with the Mexican Air Force, a femtosatellite with MxSpace through Thumbsat and research on nano, micro and picosatellites, launchers and navigation systems with AEM.