Satellite ADCS Engineer

Job Ref: 3132360 | Type: Permanent / Full Time

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About The Role

About Rocket Lab
At Rocket Lab, we believe the future will be defined and enabled by access to space.  As a world leader in launch and space systems, we’re making that future a reality and enabling the ideas of tomorrow to reach orbit today.  We’re unlocking the potential of space ushering in a new area of opportunity and exploration for the benefit of humankind.
Your Mission
This is a rare opportunity within Rocket Lab to play a pivotal role in supporting NASA in its mission to land this first woman and next man on the moon by the 2024.  Our Electron launch vehicle and Photon satellite bus have been selected by NASA to launch a pathfinding mission to lunar orbit in 2021.  The historic mission will lay the groundwork for the Lunar Gateway, paving the way for future missions to the moon and further exploration of our solar system.  The moon is just the beginning, so now is your chance to play a key role in shaping our long-term exploration plans.
As the Satellite ADSC Engineer, you’ll be responsible for the design, implementation, testing and operation of attitude determination and control systems (ADCS) as well as guidance, navigation and control (GNC) systems utilized in our Photon satellite bus and other Rocket Lab vehicles.  Thanks to Rocket Lab’s rapid development pace and our frequent launches, your work will be on orbit in months, not years.
Your team-mates and mentors are the people who designed and built Rocket Lab’s world-first launch and space systems from the ground up.  You’ll have the opportunity to grow your career in a fast-paced, innovative environment, while working alongside dedicated colleagues who support each other every step of the way.
Duties & Responsibilities
  • Design and development of GNC and ADCS Software, particularly:
  • Satellite simulation software
  • ADCS algorithms and implementation in flight software
  • Maneuver and operation sequencing and command creation
  • Data processing software for GNC purposes (MATLAB/Python Post-Processing Tools)
  • Mission requirements engineering, including detailed sensor and actuator characterization and modelling
  • Sensor and actuator testing and model validation
  • Assisting with satellite operations including flight dynamics, fault finding, contingency planning and command validation
  • On-orbit GNC and ADCS system calibration and commissioning
  • Hardware in the loop test planning, execution and validation
  • Review software merge request and ensure all new GNC software meets our internal software standard
  • Follow GNC team coding standards
  • Identify and implement process improvements to aid the efficiency of the GNC team
  • Domestic and international travel may be required
Essential skills:
  • Master’s degree in Aerospace, Mechanical, or Electrical Engineering or comparable field
  • 2+ years experience developing in C++ including some embedded or high reliability development
  • 2+ years experience developing Python or MATLAB
  • 2+ years experience developing attitude determination and control algorithms, and/or guidance and navigation algorithms
  • Thorough understanding of orbital mechanics, rigid body dynamics, and kinematics
  • Understanding of closed-loop control systems and/or estimation systems
  • The ability to work under pressure and to tight deadlines
  • Excellent communication skills with the ability to build strong working relationships
  • Ph.D in Aerospace, Mechanical or Electrical engineering or a comparable field
  • A strong theoretical and/or practical understanding of kinematics, dynamic and electronic systems
  • Previous development of real-time control and/or estimation algorithms
  • Experience with Git version control
  • Experience working in a continuous integration environment
  • Experience with Simulink
  • Experience working within an Agile/Scrum based workflow
Important Information 
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

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