Propulsion Engineer III / Propulsion Team Lead

Cocoa, FL • Full-time •

Travel Percentage: 10%

Required Security Clearance: None (ITAR Eligible)

Job Description:


You will lead a team of driven and enthusiastic engineers working to prototype, design, develop, and test our innovative STAR-3DTM hybrid rocket engine-powered Dauntless small launch vehicle. In this position you will be responsible for the design, test, integration, and production of the vehicle’s primary propulsion system as well as associated Reaction Control System thrusters.   

You should be comfortable working in a fast-paced and often uncertain environment, contributing to innovative solutions, while demonstrating personal and team leadership, technical competence, and attention to detail. A willingness to branch outside your comfort zone is essential… we’re a small fast-paced company and everyone pitches in when needed. This is an opportunity to get in near the ground floor of an expanding space launch start up and have a direct impact on the development and production of a completely new space launch vehicle.

Primary Duties and Responsibilities: (Duties and responsibilities which occupy a major portion of time and importance in the job. Incumbent(s) perform one or more of the following duties.)

  • Provide technical guidance and oversight to technical leads in the research, prototype development, and testing (analytical and experimental) of hybrid rocket engines and RCS thruster systems to ensure consistent documentation and integration of their work into the overall program.

  • Interface directly with the launch vehicle development team to integrate the motor into overall launch vehicle design.

  • Oversee detailed propulsion designs, procurement of components and materials, and testing to demonstrate system performance.

  • Correlate test results to analyses to provide accurate predictions of future system performance.

  • Manage cost and schedule of all propulsion development programs to ensure on-schedule completion of programs elements.

  • Identify program risk, document, communicate, develop mitigation plans and drive risk to an acceptable level. Provide expert propulsion engineering advice to executive leadership.

  • Support sales and business development activities, including the development of technical proposals.

  • Direct the work activities of assigned employees. Mentor and provide developmental guidance to assigned personnel. Conduct performance appraisals.

  • Perform other duties as required.

Minimum Education and Experience   MSci in Aerospace Engineering or another relevant engineering discipline plus at least 8 years relevant experience with rocket engine research, development, or design.  PhD in Aerospace Engineering or another relevant field can substitute for 5 years’ experience.

Required Skills and Education:

  • Proven track record of leading a team to deliver multiple projects from conception to production and testing.

  • Comprehensive knowledge and hands-on experience in designing, testing, and launching rocket propulsion systems.

  • Experience designing propulsion systems for cryogenic and non-cryogenic propellants.

  • Comprehensive knowledge of generating engineering drawings, GD&T, and designing with strong considerations toward manufacturability.

  • Extensive experience in the entire rocket engine design cycle including trade studies, design and analysis, production, assembly, test support and data review. In-depth experience with hybrid rocket engine development or application

  • Solid system engineering and configuration management skills.

  • Ability to communicate technical information effectively.

  • Ability to work effectively both independently and as part of a team.

  • Demonstrated leadership abilities with teams of engineers.

  • Must be a U.S. citizen or permanent resident (current Green Card holder) or be granted status as a "protected person" under 8 U.S.C. 1324b(a)(3).

   Preferred Skills and Education:       

  • Demonstrated experience managing multiple simultaneous development and testing programs.

  • Experience with mentorship programs and employee development processes.

  • Detailed understanding of designing lightweight, high-strength structures.

  • Detailed understanding of constraints and considerations when designing/ interfacing with composite structures.

  • Direct experience working/iterating with structural and multi-physics analysis tools for design optimization.

  • Experience with topology optimization for lightweight structural design.

  • Experience with Windchill or similar product lifecycle management software suites.