Advanced Search

Aerospace Engineers' Handbook
Quick Preview
Full‑size Preview

Aerospace Engineers' Handbook

Watermarked PDF

Aerospace engineering is the art and science of designing spacecraft and starships. This practice encompasses a range of craft from sleek surface-to-orbit craft to lumbering bulk carriers, and the aerospace engineer is key to their design.

Spacecraft and starships are the lifeblood of exploration and commerce. They are also vital in the defence and acquisition of colony worlds and the economies that rely on them. The stutterwarp drive provides the key to interstellar travel. Rather than taking decades or even centuries to reach the stars, stutterwarp reduces that time to days. The most difficult part remains escaping a planetary gravity well; once in orbit, you are halfway to anywhere.

The Aerospace Engineers’ Handbook provides everything you need to design not just the ships of human space, but also the vessels of the alien Kaefers, Pentapods, and Sung. It also covers the design of drones, space stations, and alternative means of achieving orbit.

Alongside this, there is further information on those living in space, the outsiders who abandoned planets for the stars, along with the major space powers and their fleets. The Aerospace Engineers’ Handbook also contains a selection of drones and ships, for Travellers to command, fight, or run away from, with advanced rules for spacecraft combat.

Requires the use of the 2300AD box set.

 Customers Who Bought this Title also Purchased
Reviews (0)
Discussions (4)
Customer avatar
Andrew P March 13, 2022 12:53 am UTC
Mongoose, have you folks published a pdf form for ship design like you did with the 2300 character template? I cannot find one.
Customer avatar
Matthew M January 22, 2022 5:54 pm UTC
If you buy this, you are really only buying it for the math, which I have not checked yet. Some of the example ships are duplicated from the core books. The space station section among other descriptions is bare bones and seemed rushed -- could really have benefited from more work and figures. Maybe I will work something up at some point. Internal layout of many ships would work just as well for games with gravity technology (e.g., traveller). This tells me the layouts were not thought out for how they would work in a zero g environment. It seems like the art work was commissioned for coolness factor and then they tried to force deck plans to fit. They don't always make sense and can be hard to follow. Some of the descriptions also don't make sense from an "aerospace engineer's" perspective. If Mongoose did not consult actual engineers in the space industry, they should have to improve the realism. In general many traveller deckplans could benefit from improvements by someone with a human factors background,...See more
Customer avatar
Andrew P March 13, 2022 1:49 am UTC
Real aerospace engineer here. Actually working on a crewed exploration vehicle as we speak. I reluctantly have to agree with Matthew M about one criticism. Lots of the deck plans are arranged "building-style" with the decks oriented such that the back of the ship is "down" under thrust. This is a bad idea for a lot of 2300 ships. It makes a certain amount of sense because these later editions of 2300AD have added reaction thrust drives to almost everything so that even stutterwarp ships can maneuver close in to planets where local gravity renders the stutterwarp useless. These reaction drives are unrealistically efficient and thrust at one gee. I'm pretty sure that's why the designer laid out many of the ships "buliding-style". The problem with this is that drives that powerful will accomplish the necessary maneuvers very fast ... so the ship won't spend much time under reaction thrust at all...even on the intermittent occasions they use their reaction drives. Most ships,...See more
Customer avatar
John J March 30, 2022 12:07 am UTC
Dang, I was hoping this would be a book to help me build the oddball ships from Star Frontiers - i.e. atomic drives (fission-fragment?), fission powerplants, no gravitics, etc. I tried Trashuman Space but the math was too much for me despite explanations of realistic drives. Hmmm.
Customer avatar
Paul B November 25, 2021 12:49 am UTC
It may be that this is the starship construction system I’ve been dreaming about since the original High Guard. I remember taking a bus into NYC, and seeing High Guard on the shelf at The Compleat Strategist. I was still in high school, I was a part-time stock boy in a neighborhood pharmacy and minimum wage was $3.25/hour. So I had a twenty dollar bill in my pocket. That little book cost less than half of that $20 and I had a slice of pizza and a coke waiting for the bus to go home. I had dreams of spaceships and interstellar flight before Traveller, but that little book was like having the plans of the Death Star. I spent hours designing ships, fleets, star systems, histories. This was before JTAS, before the 3rd Imperium became a thing. I had to use my own imagination. But what I built belonged to me, and I learned things. I didn’t play the game a lot, because few of my friends were interested in that. But boy, was I hooked. All it took was those three black books in that box, and High Guard. Mercenary too....See more
Customer avatar
Thomas B November 28, 2021 6:34 am UTC
Same. And trying to get new people into games that need you to really spend $100-300 to get enough adventures, expansions, etc. to sort of fully flesh it out is a huge deterrent. There are a lot of other systems that are less crunchy that allow some great sci-fi games and cost a lot less to be a part of.

I loved 2300 AD the first time (in the box). I've even got a 3D Astrosynthesis setup for the various arms, fingers, etc. But I can't love something I can't bring myself to buy.

But there's still the original version. It's only real failing was Star Cruiser was a wargame with little room for player skills or actions. They needed something more like Mayday or Brilliant Lances.
Customer avatar
Malcolm M January 02, 2022 7:32 pm UTC
Same here, as well. The buy-in price for yet another Mongoose edition of the material is too hard to justify, especially since these are simply electronic copies being sold at premium prices.
Customer avatar
Mikko R November 24, 2021 6:00 pm UTC
The preview fills me with worry. Only a few grams of tantalum needed / space craft?!? There goes the core logic of the setting. Megatraveller style nonsense about "displacement tons"... why?
Customer avatar
Gavin D November 24, 2021 11:58 pm UTC
The quantity of tantalum actually required for the drive has never really been specified, just that its required. Could easily be a few grams of Ta-180, which is breathtakingly scarce.

These rules are based on the current set of Traveller rules from Mongoose Publishing, and they use displacement tons. You gotta use what the rulebook uses.

Customer avatar
Mikko R December 16, 2021 9:12 pm UTC
The current Mongoose rules use actual tonnage (and displacement tonnage also refers to the mass of water displaced by a ship, it's nothing like the garbage in MegaTraveller).

A 200t ship in Mongoose 2nd edition has a mass of 200 metric tons.

As for changing the requirement for Tantalum into a meaningless pinch, it has a huge effect on how the world works. Please do not pretend it wasn't deliberate, as it has been stated as such on the Mongoose forums at least.
Customer avatar
Andrew P February 12, 2022 12:23 am UTC
Ta-180 doesn't solve your problem I don't think. It has a half life of a little over 8 hours.

I'm searching the Mongoose forums for this Great Tantalum Resizing but I'm not finding it. I agree with previous two commentators that this would seem to really change the dynamics of the setting and am curious about the change. Any pointers would be appreciated.
Customer avatar
Andrew P March 01, 2022 9:05 pm UTC
Ok I bought the book and my comment above about the 8 hour half-life isn’t relevant. The designers didn’t use Ta-180 (which is radioactive) but the stable Ta-180m (which I wasn’t diligent enough to remember existed). So that’s what I found when I searched their forum and read the book.
Browse Categories
 Follow Your Favorites!
NotificationsSign in to get custom notifications of new products!

Product Information
Silver seller
Rule System(s)
Publisher Stock #
File Size:
42.74 MB
Original electronic
Scanned image
These products were created by scanning an original printed edition. Most older books are in scanned image format because original digital layout files never existed or were no longer available from the publisher.

For PDF download editions, each page has been run through Optical Character Recognition (OCR) software to attempt to decipher the printed text. The result of this OCR process is placed invisibly behind the picture of each scanned page, to allow for text searching. However, any text in a given book set on a graphical background or in handwritten fonts would most likely not be picked up by the OCR software, and is therefore not searchable. Also, a few larger books may be resampled to fit into the system, and may not have this searchable text background.

For printed books, we have performed high-resolution scans of an original hardcopy of the book. We essentially digitally re-master the book. Unfortunately, the resulting quality of these books is not as high. It's the problem of making a copy of a copy. The text is fine for reading, but illustration work starts to run dark, pixellating and/or losing shades of grey. Moiré patterns may develop in photos. We mark clearly which print titles come from scanned image books so that you can make an informed purchase decision about the quality of what you will receive.
Original electronic format
These ebooks were created from the original electronic layout files, and therefore are fully text searchable. Also, their file size tends to be smaller than scanned image books. Most newer books are in the original electronic format. Both download and print editions of such books should be high quality.
File Information
Watermarked PDF
Watermarked PDF

These PDF files are digitally watermarked to signify that you are the owner. A small message is added to the bottom of each page of the PDF containing your name and the order number of your purchase.

Warning: If any files bearing your information are found being distributed illegally, then your account will be suspended and legal action may be taken against you.

Here is a sample of a page from a watermarked title:

File Last Updated:
April 05, 2022
This title was added to our catalog on November 23, 2021.