Satellite ADCS Engineer

Job Ref: 4431419003 | Type: (a) Full-time

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About The Role

Rocket Lab

Rocket Lab is the global leader in small satellite launch. Our mission is to open access to space to improve life on Earth. There are endless possibilities for what we can achieve with better access to space, and that access is now a reality thanks to Rocket Lab. Our team is 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.

While other companies talk about it, we do it!

About the Role
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 and ushering in a new era 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 the first woman and next man on the Moon by 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 human 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 ADCS 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.

Satellite ADCS Engineer

The Satellite ADCS Engineer is responsible for the design, implementation and operation of ADCS Systems involved in satellite and ground operations for Photon and other Rocket Lab Spacecraft, including their production.

Duties & Responsibilities

  • Mission requirements engineering, including detailed sensor and actuator characterization and modeling.
  • Design and development of GNC and ADCS software, particularly:
    • Satellite simulator software.
    • ADCS algorithms and implementation.
    • On-orbit GNC system calibration and commissioning.
    • Maneuver and operation sequencing and command creation.
    • Data processing software for GNC purposes (MATLAB/Python Post-Processing Tools).
    • Other new software products that may be initiated.
  • Review software merge requests and ensure all new GNC Software meets our internal software standard.
  • Assisting with satellite operations including flight dynamics, fault-finding, contingency planning and command validation.
  • Hardware-in-the-loop test planning, execution and validation.
  • Identify and implement process improvements to aid the efficiency of the GNC Team.
  • Follow company / GNC Team coding standards
  • Domestic and international travel may be required

Required Experience & Education

  • Bachelors degree in Electrical, Mechanical, or Aerospace Engineering, or comparable field.
  • 4+ years’ experience developing in C/C++ including embedded or high reliability development.
  • 4+ years’ experience developing attitude determination and control algorithms, and/or guidance and navigation algorithms.
  • Experience with Git - Version Control.
  • The ability to work in a fast-paced work environment.
  • Excellent communication skills with the ability to build strong working relationships.

Preferred Experience & Education

  • Master's degree in Electrical, Mechanical, or Aerospace Engineering, or comparable field.
  • Experience with Python, and MATLAB.
  • A strong theoretical and/or practical understanding of kinematics, dynamics, and electronic systems
  • Experience with flight simulator or flight software development for autonomous vehicles, preferably satellites.
  • Understanding of orbital mechanics
  • Understanding of closed-loop control systems.
  • Experience working in a continuous integration environment.

Important Information:
To conform to US Government space technology export regulations, applicants must be a US citizen, lawful permanent resident of the US, protected individual as defined by 8 USC 1324b(a)(3), or eligible to obtain the required authorization from the US Department of State.

Rocket Lab USA is an Equal Opportunity Employer, employment with Rocket Lab USA is governed on the basis of merit, competence and qualifications and will not be influenced in any manner by race, color, religion, gender, national origin/ethnicity, veteran status, disability status, age, sexual orientation, gender identity, marital status, mental or physical disability or any other legally protected status

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