Principal Spacecraft Systems Engineer
About The Role
Rocket Lab is a vertically integrated provider of small launch services, satellites, and spacecraft components. Our mission is to open access to space to improve life on Earth. Our team is over 1,500 people strong and we’re adding to it every week. Collaboration is at our core – every idea is heard, and everyone makes a difference. Teams are nimble, decisions are made quickly, and we are action oriented.
This is a rare opportunity to play a key role in Rocket Lab’s evolution into an end-to-end space company that delivers launch, spacecraft, and on-orbit operations. The Space Systems Division is shaping Rocket Lab’s future with Photon, our brand of high-performance satellites, enabling innovative missions in low Earth orbit and beyond including missions for NASA to LEO, the Moon, and Mars and commercial customers, including leading the design and manufacture of 17 high-power telecommunication spacecraft buses for Globalstar.
Rocket Lab is also growing our spacecraft components business, anchored on the acquisition of Sinclair Interplanetary manufacturing reaction wheels and star trackers in Toronto, SolAero Technologies manufacturing solar power and primary structure solutions in Albuquerque, Planetary Systems Corporation manufacturing launch separation systems in Silver Spring, and Advanced Solutions, Inc., provider of flight and ground software as a service in Denver. Our components business is key to vertically integrating our spacecraft solutions and enabling constellations for customers.
PRINCIPAL SPACECRAFT SYSTEMS ENGINEER
Based out of Rocket Lab's global headquarters in Long Beach, CA, the Principal Spacecraft Systems Engineer is responsible for the development and maintenance of technical budgets, requirements definition, test planning and execution, and overall management of the systems engineering process. You will support the Chief Space Systems Engineer and Space Systems organization, with deliverables required for internal leadership, board of directors, and investors.
WHAT YOU’LL GET TO DO:
- Develop and maintain:
- Technical budgets for vehicle performance
- System requirements and verification techniques
- Simulations and analysis across vehicle functions
- Test methods and data analysis
- Lead and own technical development of spacecraft missions
- Assist with program and product management
- Develop, in collaboration with team members, interface specifications, CONOPS definition, and other design documents
YOU’LL BRING THESE QUALIFICATIONS (Note: you must meet every qualification in order to be considered):
- Bachelor’s degree in engineering or other technical discipline
- 15+ years of experience and SME with satellite development programs
THESE QUALIFICATIONS WOULD BE NICE TO HAVE:
- Advanced degree in engineering or other technical discipline
- Understanding of key spacecraft subsystems and their associated components, including: attitude determination and control systems (ADCS), electrical power systems (EPS), space-ground communications, on-orbit command and data handling (C&DH), and thermal control
- Thorough understanding of the space environment, orbital mechanics, and rigid body dynamics
- Experience with Matlab, Python, and STK
- Experience with requirement management tools such as JAMA or DOORS
- Experience with satellite operations
- Experience with testing electrical subsystems and assemblies, thermal vacuum or random vibration, and hardware-in-the loop (HITL) testing
- Ability to work in a dynamic environment with competing priorities
In addition to base salary, Rocket Lab offers a comprehensive total compensation offer package based on individual qualifications and experience, including company stock. Employees will also be eligible for medical, dental, vision coverage, 401(k) retirement plan options, and to purchase discounted stock through Rocket Lab's Employee Stock Purchase Program.
FOR CANDIDATES SEEKING TO WORK IN US OFFICES ONLY:
To conform to U.S. Government space technology export regulations, applicant must be a U.S. citizen as defined by ITAR (22 CFR §120.15) or eligible to obtain the required authorizations fromthe U.S Department of State.
Rocket Lab provides equal employment opportunities to all employees and applicants for employment and prohibits discrimination and harassment of any type without regard to race, color, religion, age, sex, national origin, disability status, genetics, protected veteran status, sexual orientation, gender identity or expression, or any other characteristic protected by federal, state or local laws. This policy applies to all terms and conditions of employment at Rocket Lab, including recruiting, hiring, placement, promotion, termination, layoff, recall, transfer, leaves of absence, compensation and training.
FOR CANDIDATES SEEKING TO WORK IN NEW ZEALAND OFFICES ONLY:
For security reasons background checks will be undertaken prior to any employment offers being made to an applicant. These checks will include nationality checks as it is a requirement of this position that you be eligible to access equipment and data regulated by the United States' International Traffic in Arms Regulations.
Under these Regulations, you may be ineligible for this role if you do not hold citizenship of Australia, Japan, New Zealand, Switzerland, the European Union or a country that is part of NATO, or if you hold ineligible dual citizenship or nationality. For more information on these Regulations, click here ITAR Regulations.
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