Propulsion Test Engineer, Comet SmallSat Propulsion

Company Details

Fast access to key orbits and space logistics

We are looking for a Test Engineer to join our small design team to develop, test, qualify and
manufacture the new generation of Bradford’s Comet propulsion system for smallsat applications.
Comet is a launch-safe and cost-effective water-based propulsion system with flight heritage since
2018.

The Comet product line, originally developed in 2016 by Deep Space Industries (DSI) in California, was
acquired by Bradford Space in 2018. The new Bradford’s facility in Luxembourg is taking over the
responsibility to refine the existing Comet product line and conduct all future operations, including
production, testing and commercialization.

In this endeavour, you will be an instrumental member of a small team building the new generation
of Bradford’s Comet water-based propulsion system. Our small team in Luxembourg focuses on the
objective of building a reliable, performing, and mass-optimised water-based propulsion system for
the nano-microsatellite market and future ISRU missions/applications. As a Test Engineer you will take
the responsibility for development of a testing architecture and methodology, and the execution of
both developmental and qualification testing campaigns.

The operation will aim to blend the responsible high-quality engineering practices of traditional
aerospace engineering while implementing the rapid iterative development methods and dynamic
workplace culture of a NewSpace style start-up.

Key responsibilities

  • Conceive, design, and deploy a general testing architecture for the new Comet thruster
  • Set up and run test campaigns, both in-house and at external facilities
  • Develop test plans, procedures and analyse test results
  • In conjunction with the design engineers, contribute to design and improve testability
  • Execute test campaigns on components, prototypes and qualification models
  • Setup manufacturing test processes and procedures
  • Manage and maintain the data captured during tests run
  • Conduct hardware troubleshooting together with engineering design
  • Prepare testing reports, both internally and for external stakeholders
  • Identify and plan upgrades in the equipment and facilities to meet volume production demand

Essential skills

  • Bachelor’s degree or higher education degree in Aerospace engineering, Mechanical or
    related engineering discipline
  • 3+ years of working experience in space propulsion systems, testing, design, and/or
    development.
  • Knowledge of typical spacecraft tests, including TVAC, vibration, shock, EMC, etc.
  • Comfortable understanding complex mechanical schematics and/or manufacturing data
  • Experience developing and testing hardware from concept to prototype
  • Proficient English language skills

Strongly valued/desired skills

  • Familiarity with relevant testing procedures & standards (e.g., ECSS, ASTM, IPC)
  • Knowledge of build-for-test design and automated testing principles
  • Experience designing or specifying and setting up test equipment, harnesses and software
  • Previous experience operating environmental test apparatuses (thermal chambers, shakers
    etc)
  • Programming experience (C++, Python, Labview, Matlab, Excel, etc.)
  • Experience with CAD and FEA tools
  • Thermal, mechanical design, electrsabhiinic, or software experience
  • Data management and analysis skills
  • Knowledge about the space environment, hardware product assurance techniques and the
    motivations and purpose of the qualification test process
  • Ability to create and maintain procedures for a manufacturing team
  • Familiarity with commercial low-cost/SmallSat components and subsystems
  • Exposure to full-lifecycle spacecraft subsystems development process

Tagged as: Matlab, python, CAD, C++, FEA, labview, excel

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