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Orion laser facility

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Control and Instrumentation apprenticeships

Control and Instrumentation (C&I) is one of only two 'critical trades' at AWE. That's because C&I is vital to the success of our mission, to keep the nation safe and secure. Put simply, C&I engineers enable a wide range of different automated processes to run.

C&I engineers create, simplify and automate processes. We deal with systems that measure and control all kinds of things - from the flow of water, to the temperature of a furnace. Our goal is to make sure complex processes can take place at the simple press of a button.In C&I, we maintain, install and develop equipment used to control a variety of processes within AWE's production environment. That means everything from air handling units which keep clean air flowing safely through different working environments, through to programmable logic controllers which use advanced IT to control a variety of systems.

What will you do?
C&I engineers test and calibrate equipment to make sure it works well. That's the 'instrumentation' part. We also make sure signals are getting where they need to go, and result in the right actions taking place. That's the 'control' element.
C&I involves a unique variety of disciplines- from electrical, electronic and mechanical engineering, through to computer programming. You'll always have a new and interesting challenge to focus on. And you'll never have a dull moment.
The processes, systems and equipment you work with will be incredibly varied. But each one will be a crucial part of AWE's success. As an apprentice, you'll learn to understand, test and adjust them all using specialist tools. Considering how different processes interconnect, you'll help us join systems up to make AWE's important work easier and more efficient for everyone.
Of course, it's not all about maintenance, installation and development. Sometimes even the most advanced systems can break. When that happens, C&I engineers need to respond rapidly and solve complex problems. As you develop your engineering knowledge and confidence, you'll enjoy opportunities to take the lead and solve challenges independently. There's nothing more exciting.

How will you learn?
It all begins at our famous Skills Academy. You'll attend a range lectures designed to increase your knowledge and understanding of a wide range of circuits and systems. Importantly, you will also
learn and develop vital control and instrumentation skills by completing various projects.
Once your training at the Academy is complete, you'll move to the highly practical, on-site phase of training. Taking part in a variety of different placements, you will use your new skills to
maintain, repair, install and calibrate equipment that is used across AWE. You will spend the whole second half of your apprenticeship on placements.

What are we looking for?

You'll need to demonstrate:

  •  A practical aptitude for engineering or technology
  • Computer literacy (PC)
  • Excellent team working skills
  • Good communication skills
  • Awareness of health and safety
  • The ability to follow instructions
  • The ability to concentrate for long periods
  • A real passion for this type of work

Depending on your qualifications, you may join us as a Level 3 (Advanced) or Level 4 (Higher) Apprentice.

Level 3 (Standard)

Entry Requirements:

  • Preferably GCSE in Math and English at Grade 4 or above (or equivalent)

Qualifications achieved during your apprenticeship:

  • Level 3 Diploma in Electrical/Electronic Engineering (Technical certificate)
  • Level 2 English, Maths & ICT (Functional Skills) – If required
  • Employment Rights and Responsibilities (ERR)
  • Process Safety Awareness Certificate

Duration of training: 3-4 Years

Starting salary: £10500

Level 4 (Framework)

Entry Requirements:

  • 2 A levels (preferred) or 5 GCSEs at C (or equivalent) and above, 2 of which must be Math & English.
  • Ideal if you have previously achieved a level 3 BTEC.

Qualifications achieved during your apprenticeship:

  • HNC in Electrical/Electronic Engineering (Technical certificate)
  • Level 4 NVQ Extended Diploma in Engineering Maintenance
  • Level 2 English, Maths & ICT (Functional Skills) – If required
  • Employment Rights and Responsibilities (ERR)
  • Personal Learning & Thinking Skills (PLTS)
  • Process Safety Awareness Certificate

Duration of training: 4 Years

Starting salary: £10500