Work in UK: Junior Naval Architect – Development Scheme – Graduate

Work in UK: Junior Naval Architect – Development Scheme – Graduate

Job Details

  • UK, Europe
  • Competitive
  • Ministry of Defence(View profile)
  • Graduate schemes
  • Recently

The Submarine Delivery Agency (SDA) presents an exciting and promising career opportunity for enthusiastic and driven Junior Naval Architects to become part of our targeted Naval Architecture Development Scheme at MOD Abbey Wood in Bristol. By joining our team, you will work alongside highly skilled professionals, contributing to some of the world’s most extensive and intricate engineering programs. Your role will place you at the forefront of marine technology, naval architecture, and submarine design, where you will encounter unique engineering challenges inherent to this industry while actively supporting project success and providing valuable assistance to the Royal Navy.

Our Naval Architecture Development Scheme spans a 2-year period, meticulously designed to broaden your knowledge and enhance your skills in the realm of submarine naval architecture. Throughout the program, you will gain valuable insights and hands-on experience, starting from the early concept design phases through to supporting our laid-up submarines. This journey includes six 4-month placements with various project teams, each specializing in distinct aspects of naval architecture and submarine design:

  1. Forward Design Group (Pre-Concept & Feasibility Studies)
  2. SSN AUKUS (Design of the UK’s next SSN)
  3. Dreadnought (delivery of the Vanguard Class replacement)
  4. Submarine Production (delivery of the remaining Astute Class submarines)
  5. In-Service Support (Support to T, V, and A Class submarines, all laid up submarines, and the NATO Submarine Rescue System)
  6. Naval Authority Technology Group (R&D, Safety Assurance, and Naval Authority Certification of UK Submarines)

Our program is led by SDA Naval Architects, designed for the next generation of SDA Naval Architects. As a participant, you will have the exceptional opportunity to shadow and learn from industry-leading specialists, benefit from investment in upskilling, and make visits to shipyards, dockyards, suppliers, and platforms. You will engage in critical work related to submarine structures, watertight integrity, shock and signatures, and there is ample room for international collaboration and engagement. Additionally, you may have the chance to participate in sea trials and stability trials. Upon successfully completing the program, you will be certified as an SDA Naval Architect, and you will have the opportunity to join one of the project teams mentioned earlier.

Our commitment to your development includes on-site training at least twice a week, allowing you to interact with our senior Engineers, fostering your growth and expertise. You will also have the privilege of visiting our other UK sites, broadening your understanding and exposure to the broader scope of our operations.

Please note that these roles are available exclusively to UK Nationals due to the security requirements involved in the nature of the work.



You will become an integral part of a dynamic team, collaborating with multi-disciplinary engineers, project managers, commercial experts, and cost engineers. Your professional environment will be characterized by a hybrid working model that prioritizes fairness and ethics, fostering your personal development, facilitating career advancement, and enriching your future prospects. As a part of our team, you will also have the opportunity to attend the SDA’s in-house ‘Submarine Naval Architecture School,’ where you will engage in a diverse array of projects, including:

  • Research on hull form and appendages
  • Design and assessment tasks
  • Evaluation of maneuvering and control performance (both surfaced and submerged)
  • Stability assessment, which involves conducting Trim & Incline and Check Trim trials
  • Research on propulsors
  • Design and development of pressure hulls and secondary structures
  • All of these aspects pertain to a range of vessel types, including SSN, SSBN, Novel, and Autonomous Underwater Vehicles

Additionally, we offer targeted technical training opportunities that encompass various courses, including but not limited to:

  • Submarine Design Course
  • Submarine Hydrodynamics Course
  • Dry Docking Course
  • Shock Course

There are potential opportunities to receive support for completing your Masters degree. Furthermore, we encourage and provide access to a wide spectrum of training opportunities to ensure that you develop a comprehensive understanding of Naval Architecture and the broader operations within SDA. This extends to areas such as project management, financial skills, risk management, and safety management.

In order to successfully apply, you will need to demonstrate that you meet the following essential criteria:

  • Holding, or being on track to complete this academic year, a Level 6 qualification (e.g., BEng or higher) in Naval Architecture or a closely related subject, or having equivalent experience
  • Basic proficiency in using Naval Architectural analytical tools for modeling, including but not limited to Paramarine, Rhinoceros 3D, Hydrostatic, Hydrodynamic, and CFD software

In addition to the aforementioned responsibilities, the interview process will also assess the following technical competences and behaviors:

  • Application of Analytical Techniques (Supervised Practitioner)
  • Technical Decision Making (Awareness)
  • Effective Communication and Influence
  • Collaborative Work Abilities


  • 25 days’ annual leave +1 day a year up to 30 days, 8 bank holidays and a day off for the King’s birthday
  • Flexible and hybrid working wherever possible, to support your work-life balance (though some attendance to the stated site is required)
  • Market-leading employer pension contribution of around 27%
  • Annual performance-based bonus and recognition awards
  • Access to specialist training and funded professional qualifications
  • Support for progression
  • Huge range of discounts
  • Volunteering days
  • Enhanced parental leave schemes

We believe in creating an inclusive environment where our people can grow, thrive, and be their authentic selves. We value diversity of thought and the ways in which it enriches our culture and our work. So whether you’re looking for a new opportunity, a next step, or a helping hand as you return from a career break, here you’ll find a supportive, family-friendly organisation to be a part of. And if you need any assistance with your application, just let us know.


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