GATE Aerospace Engineering Syllabus and Exam Pattern | Download GATE Aerospace eBooks

GATE Aerospace Engineering SyllabusAerospace Engineering is the primary field of engineering concerned with the development of aircraft and spacecraft. GATE 2021 syllabus will include General Aptitude, Engineering Mathematics, and the topics from the Aerospace Engineering. The weightage of all the sections will be different. With the help of the GATE Aerospace Engineering syllabus, you can easily plan your studies and focus on topics that require more time.

In this article, you will find the complete guide on GATE Syllabus and exam pattern for Aerospace Engineering 2020-2021. We have provided the subject-wise list of GATE Aerospace Engineering Books.

GATE Aerospace Engineering Syllabus 2020-2021

GATE 2021 Aerospace Engineering Syllabus will be divided into 6 sections. In each of the sections, the topics have been divided into two categories – Core Topics and Special Topics. As per the officials of GATE, 90% of the syllabus was from the core topics of aerospace while the remaining 10% was from special topics from the subject.

You should know that,

  • 85% of the total questions are asked from the core subject and the remaining 15% questions are asked from the general aptitude section. 
  • You have to attempt 60 questions in a duration of three hours.

Check the latest GATE Aerospace Engineering Syllabus 2020-2021 from below.

Engineering Mathematics

  • Linear Algebra: Matrix algebra, systems of linear equations, eigen values and eigen vectors.
  • Calculus: Functions of single variable, limit, continuity and differentiability, mean value theorems, evaluation of definite and improper integrals, partial derivatives, total derivative, maxima and minima, gradient, divergence and curl, vector identities, directional derivatives, line, surface and volume integrals. Theorems of Stokes, Gauss and Green.
  • Differential Equations: First order linear and nonlinear equations, higher order linear ODEs with constant coefficients, Cauchy and Euler equations, initial and boundary value problems,Laplace transforms. Partial differential equations and separation of variables methods.
  • Numerical methods: Numerical solution of linear and nonlinear algebraic equations, integration by trapezoidal and Simpson rule, single and multi-step methods for differential equations.

Flight Mechanics

  • Atmosphere: Properties, standard atmosphere. Classification of aircraft.Airplane (fixed wing aircraft) configuration and various parts.
  • Airplane performance: Pressure altitude; equivalent, calibrated, indicated air speeds; Primary flight instruments: Altimeter, ASI, VSI, Turn-bank indicator. Drag polar; take off and landing; steady climb & descent,-absolute and service ceiling; cruise, cruise climb, endurance or loiter; load factor, turning flight, V-n diagram; Winds: head, tail & cross winds.
  • Static stability: Angle of attack, sideslip; roll, pitch & yaw controls; longitudinal stick fixed & free stability, horizontal tail position and size; directional stability, vertical tail position and size; dihedral stability. Wing dihedral, sweep & position; hinge moments, stick forces.
  • Dynamic stability: Euler angles; Equations of motion; aerodynamic forces and moments, stability & control derivatives; decoupling of longitudinal and lat-directional dynamics; longitudinal modes; lateral-directional modes.

Space Dynamics

  • Central force motion, determination of trajectory and orbital period in simple cases. Orbit transfer, in-plane and out-of-plane. Elements of rocket motor performance.


  • Basic Fluid Mechanics: Incompressible irrotational flow, Helmholtz and Kelvin theorem, singularities and superposition, viscous flows, boundary layer on a flat plate.
  • Airfoils and wings: Classification of airfoils, aerodynamic characteristics, high lift devices, Kutta Joukowski theorem; lift generation; thin airfoil theory; wing theory; induced drag; qualitative treatment of low aspect ratio wings.
  • Viscous Flows: Flow separation, introduction to turbulence, transition, structure of a turbulent boundary layer.
  • Compressible Flows: Dynamics and Thermodynamics of I-D flow, isentropic flow, normal shock, oblique shock, Prandtl-Meyer flow, flow in nozzles and diffusers, inviscid flow in a c-d nozzle, flow in diffusers. subsonic and supersonic airfoils, compressibility effects on lift and drag, critical and drag divergence Mach number, wave drag.
  • Wind Tunnel Testing: Measurement and visualisation techniques.


  • Stress and Strain: Equations of equilibrium, constitutive law, strain-displacement relationship, compatibility equations, plane stress and strain, Airy’s stress function.
  • Flight Vehicle Structures: Characteristics of aircraft structures and materials, torsion, bending and flexural shear. Flexural shear flow in thin-walled sections. Buckling. Failure theories. Loads on aircraft.
  • Structural Dynamics: Free and forced vibration of discrete systems. Damping and resonance. Dynamics of continuous systems.


  • Thermodynamics of Aircraft Gas Turbine engines, thrust and thrust augmentation.
  • Turbomachinery: Axial compressors and turbines, centrifugal pumps and compressors.
  • Aerothermodynamics of non rotating propulsion components: Intakes, combustor and nozzle. Thermodynamics of ramjets and scramjets. Elements of rocket propulsion.

GATE Aerospace Engineering Exam Pattern 2021 

  • Mode of Examination: Online
  • Duration of Exam: 3 hours
  • Types of Questions: MCQs and NAT
  • Sections: 3 sections – General Aptitude, Mathematics and Subject-based
  • Total Questions: 65 questions
Section  Distribution of Marks Total Marks Types of questions
General Aptitude 5 questions of 1 mark each
5 questions of 2 marks each
15 marks  MCQs

Engineering Mathematics

Subject Syllabus (AE)

25 questions of 1 mark each
30 questions of 2 marks each 
85 marks MCQs and NATs

Marking scheme:

  • Total Marks: 100 marks
  • Negative Marking: For MCQs only
Type of question Negative marking for the wrong answer
MCQs ⅓ for 1 mark questions
⅔ for 2 marks questions
NATs No negative marking 

GATE Aerospace Engineering Section Wise Books

Reference books are one of the important tools to prepare for the GATE Aerospace Engineering exam. They offer thorough concepts related to the subject one is about to start.

You can check the section-wise important GATE Aerospace Engineering books as given below:

Engineering Mathematics Books

Books Author/Publisher
GATE Engineering Mathematics for All Streams Abhinav Goel and Suraj Singh,
Arihant Publication
GATE Engineering Mathematics Abhinav Goel,
Arihant Publications
GATE 2020: Engineering Mathematics ME Team,
Made Easy Publications
Higher Engineering Mathematics B.S.Grewal,
Khanna Publishers

Flight Mechanics Books

Books Author/Publisher
Introduction to Flight John D Anderson,
Tata McGraw – Hill Education
Flight Mechanics Modeling and Analysis Jitendra R. Raol,
Jatinder Singh, Crc Press
Mechanics of Flight R. H. Barnard,
Mechanics of Flight C. Kermode, R. H. Barnard,
Pearson Higher Education

Aerodynamics Book

Books Author/Publisher
Fundamentals of Aerodynamics John D Anderson,
Tata McGraw – Hill Education
Aerodynamics for Engineering Students E. L. Houghton,
P. W. Carpenter, Butterworth Heinemann
Fundamentals of Aerodynamics John D. Anderson,
Tata McGraw – Hill Education(2010)
Aerodynamics for Engineers John J. Bertin,

Structure Books

Books Author/Publisher
Theory of Structures Ramamrutham, Dhanpat Rai Publishing Company
Structural Analysis S.S. Bhavikatti, Vikas Publishing House
Matrix Methods of Structural Analysis S.S. Bhavikatti, I K International Publishing House Pvt. Ltd
Theory of Structures SMTS B.C. Punmia, Ashok Kumar Jain, Laxmi Publications

Propulsion Books

Books Author/Publisher
Rocket Propulsion Elements George P. Sutton, Wiley India Pvt Ltd
Aircraft Propulsion Mayur R. Anvekar, Prentice-Hall of India Pvt.Ltd
Marine Propellers and Propulsion Carlton
Submarine Propulsion: Muscle Power to Nuclear Sekhar Basu, Kamlesh N Vyas, Frontier India

GATE 2021 Syllabus Of Other Papers

Aerospace Engineering (AE)

Electrical Engineering (EE)

Agricultural Engineering (AG)

Ecology and Evolution (EY)

Architecture and Planning (AR)

Geology and Geophysics (GG)

Bio Medical Engineering

Instrumentation Engineering (IN)

Biotechnology (BT)

Mathematics (MA)

Civil Engineering (CE)

Mechanical Engineering (ME)

Chemical Engineering (CH)

Mining Engineering (MN)

Computer Science (CS) and Information Technology (IT)

Metallurgical Engineering (MT)

Chemistry (CY)

Petroleum Engineering (PE)

Electronics and Communication Engineering (EC)

Physics (PH)

Textile Engineering and Fibre Science (TF)

Production and Industrial Engineering (PI)



We have covered a detailed guide on GATE Aerospace Engineering Syllabus 2020-2021. Feel free to ask us any questions in the comment section below.

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