Propulsion GSE Engineer at Vector
Tucson, AZ, US

With nearly two decades of sub-orbital launch experience and technology development, VECTOR needs your help in taking the next steps to push space boundaries.  

Job Summary

Innovation in space occurs when people have the freedom to imagine and to do. We are looking for other thought leaders in their fields of expertise who also believe in our vision and can work beside us to make this dream a reality. The Propulsion Ground Support Engineer will be responsible for the design, installation, upgrade and maintenance of multiple pneumatic, hydraulic and cryogenic test stands and ancillary equipment in support of rocket engine and propulsion system testing. Responsibilities include generation of design documentation, operating and safety procedures, and training manuals. This role is for a dynamic, self-starting individual with great attention to detail and excellent people skills. This is a full-time position located at our Arizona Test Site (ATS) facility north of Tucson, AZ.

A typical day might include the following:

  • Develop functional schematics for propulsion ground support equipment (PGSE) that utilize a variety of propellants and pressurants in both liquid and gaseous states, including helium, nitrogen, oxygen, methane and propylene
  • Specify, select, design and/or modify principal components for use within the PGSE, including valves, regulators, reservoirs, fluid lines, tanks, gauges, flow meters, etc.
  • Work with propulsion and facilities technicians to prepare test stands for installation and modification of PGSE; oversee and direct component installation, interconnections and functional tests
  • Work with Test Engineering group to incorporate appropriate instrumentation, testing elements, parallel and redundant systems to enable calibration, troubleshooting, isolation and functional verification of critical elements within the PGSE
  • Maintain and update all CAD models and drawings for PGSE; conduct design reviews with stakeholders, complete data package releases per workflows, and communicate changes to operators and technicians
  • As necessary, serve as Test Operator or other critical role during execution of propulsion system tests
  • VECTOR strongly believes in the power of the individual and seeks people who share our passion for innovating, building and flying

This job might be for you if you have these:

  • B.S./M.S. in Aerospace/Mechanical/Industrial Engineering or equivalent is required
  • you have a minimum of 3+ years of relevant experience in:
    • industrial pressurization, fluid control and storage systems, preferably involving cryogenic and combustible fluids (liquid oxygen, nitrogen, propylene or propane)
    • Experience in designing, deploying and testing high-pressure pneumatic systems
    • CAD (NX, CATIA, SolidWorks, etc.)
    • working knowledge of sensors such as pressure transducers, load cells, flow meters, thermocouples and RTD's
  • MS Office Suite (including Visio) will be required
  • Willing to travel <10% to Huntington Beach, CA facility to support test campaigns and support program reviews is likely
  • Physically able to handle items weighing up to 25 lbs (unassisted)
  • Must be able to stand for extended periods – 8 hours minimum
  • Must be able to stoop, bend, crawl, and being able to maneuver in tight spaces
  • Operate predominantly in an outdoor setting, with limited air-conditioned office space
  • Work near and around cryogenic containers, explosive fuels and oxidizers
  • Manipulation of, and working around, large structures and mechanisms, including tubing, pressure valves, elevated propellant tanks, articulated and portable shelters
  • Ability and willingness to thrive in a fast-paced, rapidly changing work environment
  • Must be available to work extended hours and weekends as needed

It would be impressive if you also have these:

  • Experience developing fire suppression and emergency gas venting systems
  • Experience developing, updating and maintaining detailed test plans and procedures
  • Ability to troubleshoot both electrical, mechanical and software issues
  • Working knowledge of National Instruments data acquisition hardware and LabVIEW software
  • Ability to interpret data, conduct anomaly investigations, and provide root cause and corrective actions
  • Experience in the development of liquid rocket engines
  • Experience with Product Development Management Tools (Teamcenter, SW Enterprise, CMPRO, etc)
  • BIG vision to reshape the multi-billion launch market
  • Ability to work as a member of a cross-functional team
  • Ability to add something unique and positive to our team

Personal Requirements

Do you have an entrepreneurial spirit and desire to be part of an innovative team that designs, builds and flies rockets? Put your skills to work and see if you have what it takes to become a part of the new frontier of rocket science. Search all of our job 

ITAR Requirements
To conform to U.S. Government space technology export regulations, applicant must be a U.S. citizen, lawful permanent resident of the U.S., protected individual as defined by ITAR (22 CFR §120.15) or eligible to obtain the required authorizations from the U.S. Department of State. Learn more about the ITAR here.

VECTOR is committed to creating a diverse environment and is proud to be an equal opportunity employer. Each individual has the right to work in a professional environment that promotes equal employment opportunity and prohibits discriminatory practices, including harassment. All qualified applicants will receive consideration for employment without regard to race, color, religion, gender, gender identity or expression, sexual orientation, national origin, genetics, disability, age, or veteran status.