Senior Thermal Engineer

Company Details

End-to-End Space Transportation and In-Space Services

Thermal engineers apply world-class simulation skills and expert knowledge of heat transfer to solve complex cross-discipline problems encountered during launch vehicle design, development, and operations. Intense thermal radiation, aeroheating, cryogenics, and vacuum culminate in a complex thermal problem with a wide array of solutions.

Thermal engineers will deconstruct these complex issues to ensure Firefly vehicles meet customer requirements and conform to external safety standards, while reducing margin and driving future evolution of the vehicle thermal systems.


  • Determines effective thermal analysis approaches to provide quantitative and clear answers to functional, performance driven thermal questions.
  • Owns vehicle level thermal models (FEM, CFD) of the complete launch vehicle.
  • Creates detailed submodels for key thermal environments to capture effects of ablation, plume radiation, and other challenging phenomena.
  • Develops well documented codes or procedures for performing thermal analysis, and postprocessing analyses and test results. We want to develop the tools and methods to empower all engineers at
  • Firefly to account for thermal effects.
  • Responsible for updating and correlating models based on heat transfer data from test
  • Documents analysis and test for review by responsible engineers, peers, customers, and launch authorities


  • B.S. degree in aerospace engineering, mechanical engineering, physics, or related field
  • 2+ years of experience in thermal analysis of aircraft or spacecraft
  • Ability to effectively work in a multi-discipline team and provide actionable technical reports
  • Strong first principles grasp of heat transfer mechanisms for first order design work
  • Familiar with cryogenic fluids, two phase flow
  • Experience with industry analytical simulation tools such as Thermal Desktop, ANSYS Mechanical, COMSOL, NASTRAN, SIMCENTER3D, or other thermal FEA tools
  • Experience with thermal control technologies and testing procedures
  • Strong design and integration skills using 3D CAD software
  • Desire to improve model fidelity over time and develop new techniques


  • M.S. degree in aerospace or mechanical engineering
  • 5+ years of experience in thermal analysis of aircraft or space vehicles during all phases of conceptual design through flight
  • Experience with industry analytical simulation tools such as CFX, Fluent, STAR CCM+, GFSSP or other CFD tools
  • Experience developing physical tests to correlate and validate analysis
  • Experience with ablative and/or composite thermal protection systems
  • Demonstrated experience with Thermal Desktop or ANSYS
  • Exposure to analysis or research planning at a program level, understanding where analysis fits into the greater development roadmap
  • Familiarity with range authority requirements contained within SMC-S-016 and RCC-319 and deriving thermal qualification levels for testing of avionics components
  • Understanding of advanced thermal-related phenomena such as combustion, diffuse thermal radiation, spectroscopy, ablation, and pyrolysis

Tagged as: ANSYS Mechanical, simcenter3d, thermal desktop, nastran, comsol

Visit us on LinkedInVisit us on FacebookVisit us on Twitter