Aerostructures Lead at Elroy Air
San Francisco, CA, US
At Elroy Air, we are building autonomous cargo aircraft systems that will change the way the world moves goods. Transporting cargo by air can be much faster than by land or sea - but before recent developments in perception, autonomy, electric powertrain and aerospace materials, air transport has remained too expensive. We’re going to change that. And we’re solving a big problem - the express logistics industry worldwide spends $140B annually.
 
The Elroy team has a proven track record in UAVs and drones, with veterans from 3D Robotics, Airware and Honeywell forming the founding and early team. We’ve started (and sold) hardware companies before. We are engineers, designers and product people who are obsessed with creating robust, easy-to-use technology that solves big real-world problems. 
 
This isn’t our first rodeo, but there’s a lot of exciting work ahead. You will play a critical part in developing & testing the Elroy Air system.
 
Our future partners and customers are responding enthusiastically. As we prepare to pilot our vehicles with customers, we are looking for people like you: motivated teammates excited by this mission and by the rare opportunity to develop a world-class autonomous air transport system.
 
There are a lot of jobs out there that you could easily get, we know that. But - speaking without humility for a second - few will be nearly as exciting as this. Come join us!
 
This is a full-time position at our headquarters in San Francisco, CA.
As Aerostructures Lead, you will drive our team’s efforts to model, design, evaluate, prototype, and manufacture our aircraft’s primary structures and a broad array of mission-critical components & systems.
 
This role has a varied and exciting range of responsibilities:
 
● Aerostructures Design & Development
- Driving the design of our cargo UAV’s system components around performance, manufacturability, cost, and scalability -- E.g aircraft primary structures, landing gear, control surfaces, structural joints, access panels, etc. . .
- Sketching, whiteboarding, and helping to build team alignment on designs & determining ways to fabricate a wide range of aerostructures-focused project elements
- Driving the development and inspection of a variety of shop drawings/CAD for vendors to ensure that parts are properly toleranced and meet performance goals
- Building & reviewing 3D models in SolidWorks (or a complementary CAD package) of large and small composite components, structural assemblies, and associated metallic & plastic components
● Assuring Design for Manufacturability / Assembly / Serviceability
- Ensuring that mechanical and aerostructures efforts include thinking through and designing for:
- Appropriate access panel locationsSimple removal and installation of line replaceable units (LRUs) -- E.g. turbines, lift motors, control surface servos, antennas, & drive motorsEase of fastener access . . . and more
Vetting selection of the right production processes for our applications
● Aircraft Testing 
- Driving design & execution of structural +/- mechanical testing plans
- Assisting with destructive and non-destructive airframe load testing and sharing test results with the team.
● Strategy & Planning
- Shaping our strategy for how we plan to prototype and carry aircraft designs from low rate initial production (LRIP) to a high volume production environment
- Defining the scope & strategies for Elroy Air’s efforts surrounding FEA / structural analysis, process & material selection, and weight optimization
- Working with our Technical Program Manager to build design, development, testing, & production schedules that ensure we can hit both internally facing and externally facing deadlines. -- We take deadlines seriously.
● Aerostructures Leadership & Management
- Defining a vision of how Elroy Air should design, develop, test, and produce our aircraft’s primary structures & components and building alignment on how we make that vision a reality
- Sharing your subject matter expertise and mentoring teammates in our Aerospace Engineering group with the goal of fostering an environment of learning, professional growth and continuous improvement.
● Building and Maintaining Vendor Relationships
- Providing guidance to team in selecting development, prototyping & manufacturing partners that will best meet our program needs.
Establishing regular calls & check-in visits with vendors to ensure that program needs and timeframe goals are met.
Ensuring that vendors’ work is aligned with our aircraft performance, production, testing, regulatory, and business goals.
Being onsite with vendors during critical phases of our aircraft builds to assure that everything goes smoothly and expectations are met. 
 
Our Ideal Candidate Has
 
● An advanced degree in Aerospace or Mechanical Engineering (MS or Ph.D) with a focus on the design of composite aircraft structures
● Experience as a manager or a very strong individual contributor of high-performing Engineering teams with 3-to-10 (or more) personnel
● Deep aerostructures experience and the ability to drive composite aerostructures from clean sheet to production aircraft
● Firsthand working knowledge of materials, tooling & fixtures, resin systems, precision machining, and manufacturing processes for composite aircraft production
● 5-to-10 years of Aerospace and Mechanical Engineering experience directly pertaining to vehicle design or robotic systems
● Experience developing aircraft, vehicles, or robots utilizing high power drives or actuators
● Past experience designing for a wide variety of production processes including but not limited to machining, 3D printing, waterjet and laser cutting, welding, castings, injection molding, gluing & bonding, etc. . .
● The desire to:
- Work within a fast-paced startup environment that expects excellence and embraces diversity
- Build teams and processes from the ground up
- Get their hands dirty
- See their aircraft go to market
 
Bonus Points For
 
● Experience and interest in designing for thermoplastic composite construction
● Past experience developing parts and structures for weight-constrained applications
● Past experience developing parts and structures involving large structural composite vehicles/robots/etc…
● Interest in defining how we will navigate the policies and standards for aircraft structures being set forth within an evolving regulatory landscape for commercial use of large UAVs (e.g. FAA, EASA, ASTM, etc . . .)