Engineering Technician (Weapon Engineering) (Submariner)

Service:Submarine Service
Branch:Engineering
Level:Rating
Technology
Weapons
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At a glance

What you’ll do

As an Engineering Technician (Weapon Engineering) (Submariner), you’ll be maintaining and preparing some of the most advanced defence technology ever developed. Patrolling the oceans, and getting your hands on some incredible kit. You might be working with ballistic missile systems one day, and state-of-the-art sensors and radars the next. 

It takes something special to be a Submariner, living below the surface and being responsible for our nation’s nuclear deterrent. That’s what makes you elite. And as a Weapon Engineer in the Silent Service, your role has never been more essential. You provide the firepower, and the stealth.

Your role

  • Take responsibility for the safety of your crewmates. Whether that’s ensuring your boat is able to defend itself, or identifying threats and helping the submarine stay undetected.
  • Maintain and operate the complex communication, detection and weapon systems, and guarantee missiles, and torpedoes are fully operational. 
  • Get your hands on some of the most sophisticated electronic equipment in existence, working with your team, and under the guidance of the Engineer Officer.
  • Complete daily rounds, checking equipment to ensure the ship remains operational, and finding innovative solutions when there’s a problem.

What you’ll get

Skills for life

Qualifications you'll gain

  • Study for GCSEs, A-Levels, NVQs or a degree
  • Gain specialist vocational qualifications as your career progresses

Skills you'll develop

  • Learn to maintain and operate some of the most cutting-edge weapon systems, radars and detection equipment on the planet
  • Develop your natural aptitude for fixing things at the same time as gaining the discipline and teamwork skills that are essential on board a submarine

Career progression

What you'll need

Eligibility

  • There are no minimum qualification requirements
  • You’ll need to be aged at least 15 years and 9 months old when you apply, and under 37 years old when you begin basic training
  • You need to be over 16 years old on entry
  • You need to be a minimum height of 157cm and within the healthy range for Body Mass Index (BMI)
  • You must be a British citizen who has lived in the UK continuously for the 5 years prior to applying, or a dual national

Skills and interests

  • A quick thinker, with a passion for working with the latest equipment and technology
  • A problem-solver who can work well as part of a team
  • A real sense of adventure and great people skills
  • Enthusiasm for fixing and maintaining electronic and mechanical systems
Check Eligibility

Joining process

Joining process

Once you’ve confirmed your eligibility, the joining process is as follows:

  • Submit an application

    Once you’ve registered your interest, we’ll be in touch to discuss your options

  • Naval Service Recruitment Test (NRST)

    You’ll be tested on general reasoning, verbal ability, numeracy and mechanical comprehension

  • Interview

    A formal interview to talk through your suitability for the role

  • Medical and eye tests

    These are quite comprehensive and must be completed by one of our Ministry of Defence-approved doctors

  • Pre-Joining Fitness Test (PJFT)

    This involves completing a 2.4km run on a treadmill within a certain time, at a fitness centre near you

  • Pre-Royal Navy Course (PRNC)

        This four-day induction to life in the Royal Navy is a pass or fail course

  • Start training

    Once you’ve passed a Security Check, you’ll be offered a place at HMS Raleigh


Initial training

Your Royal Navy career begins with 10 weeks’ basic training at HMS Raleigh, a shore base in Torpoint, Cornwall. The discipline, teamwork, organisational, firefighting and weapon handling skills you learn here will stay with you right through your career.

Aim to get yourself as fit as possible before you arrive. You’ll be doing a lot of physical exercise, and you’ll find it much easier if you’re already in shape. There’s also a swimming test, so if you can’t swim, make sure you learn by the time you join us.


Professional training

Once you have the essential military and maritime skills under your belt, it’s time to start your specialist training. 

First, you’ll go to the Maritime Warfare School at HMS Collingwood. Your time there is followed by Submariner weapons training, focussing on: 

  • Weapon systems
  • Safety procedures
  • Electrical and electronic repair techniques
  • Hydraulics and pneumatics 
  • Essential tools and techniques

This will be followed by a further four months at HMS Raleigh in the Submarine School, where you’ll learn all about the boat and how to use the equipment. At the end of this phase, you’ll sit an exam. If you pass, you’ll earn your Dolphins – the mark of a qualified Submariner – and join your crew.