Sr. Design Engineer- Engines at Vector
Huntington Beach, CA, 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 Sr. Design Engineer- Engines will be responsible for leading a team of analysts, designers and test personnel to ensure, enhance and expand overall engine performance of the VECTOR-R vehicle. The ideal candidate would be a generalist with systems-level experience in launch vehicles, with greater specialized experience in liquid rocket engine development, manufacturing and test. 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 facility in Huntington Beach, CA, with periodic travel to our Arizona Test Site (ATS) near Tucson, AZ and Manufacturing facility in Tucson, AZ.

A typical day might include the following:

  • Design of pressure-fed, cryogenic liquid rocket engines, including component sizing, loads determination, and overall preliminary design and analysis
  • Generation and maintenance of detailed analytical engine models and anchoring of models to engine and stage test data to guide design and operational decisions
  • Lead and/or perform trade studies, detailed design tasks and material analyses for engine chamber assemblies, injectors and other engine components
  • Produce detailed 3D CAD and 2D drawings as part of a compete Technical Data Package
  • Serve as conductor of engine static fire tests and console operator during stage-level testing
  • Support the definition of engine development roadmaps, with consideration to performance, cost and schedule risks
  • Contribute to interdisciplinary projects to assess impacts of changes in engine designs and associated performance across other vehicle systems
  • Serve as engine subject matter expert to chief systems engineer when changes to vehicle performance and launch operations are being considered; provide detailed performance analyses across trade space with recommendations and associated risk analyses
  • Lead and mentor junior design staff in deployment of design best practices
  • 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. in in Aerospace/Mechanical/Industrial Engineering or equivalent is required
  • 5+ Years of directly relevant experience in the development of cryogenic liquid-propellant rocket engines
  • 5+ years of experience in the use of 3D CAD tools (e.g. NX, Solidworks, etc.)
  • Experience with one or more structural/FEA or thermal modeling tools is required (e.g., ANSYS, NASTRAN, Thermal Desktop, MINIVER, etc).
  • Experience in the manufacture and testing of engine combustion chambers and injectors
  • MS Office in a Windows environment
  • Willing to travel <25% annually to Tucson, AZ facility to support engine testing
  • Physically able to handle items weighing up to 25 lbs (unassisted)
  • 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:

  • Master’s Degree in a relevant field within aerospace, aviation or automotive is preferred.
  • Knowledge of MATLAB, Python, C/C++, DiaDEM
  • Experience modeling cryogenic fluids
  • Experience with test instrumentation and control components like pressure transducers, thermocouples, and associated data analysis
  • Experience designing with and processing ablative materials
  • Experience with composite structures, particularly filament wound materials
  • Experience with 3D printed components, including injectors, combustion chambers, heat exchangers and valves
  • Experience designing and testing for aerospace environments
  • Experience using GD&T and ASME Y14.5M-1994 drafting standards
  • 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.