Senior Guidance and Control Engineer

Company Details

Welcome to Planet Labs. We believe in using space to help life on Earth.

We have a big vision at Planet Labs; we are focused on Mission 1: Image the entire Earth, every day, and democratize access to these data and tools. With our humble beginnings in a Cupertino garage, to a scrappy team of engineers hacking our initial satellite builds, we now find ourselves with brand new technology, market traction and an expanding team.

We have a people-centric approach toward culture and community and we are iterating in a way that puts our team members first and prepares our company for growth. Be a part of our mission and help build a company that is changing the world.

From tech demos to operational constellations, we are designing, manufacturing and launching record-breaking numbers of spacecraft. We leverage the latest technologies and develop our own, while rapidly iterating our spacecraft design.

Planet Labs is currently seeking a talented Senior Guidance and Control Engineer to join our team.

The Role:

As a Senior Guidance and Control Engineer, you will work on a small team of dedicated engineers responsible for the attitude determination and control subsystem of the Planet Labs satellites. Key functions include development and implementation of attitude determination and control algorithms, anomaly resolution, spacecraft telemetry trending, and generation/validation of operational products related to attitude determination. You will be responsible for performing technical analysis to support flight operations and inform design decisions for future spacecraft. You will assist in the development and analysis of new mission concepts and support the development of the state estimation and commanding system for a three axis stabilized spacecraft. You will also build ground testing equipment for concept validation and have the opportunity to take designs from scratch to space operation.

The Must Haves:

  • Masters degree in Aerospace Engineering or related field
  • At least 5 years of experience as an estimation/controls engineer or related position
  • Practical experience developing production-quality real-time systems in C for microcontroller or embedded Linux target
  • Familiarity with software engineering tools and processes (version control, code review, regression testing)
  • Ability to test, evaluate and guide ADCS hardware decisions
  • Working knowledge of optimal state estimation and control theory, force and momentum formulations, numerical methods and 6-DOF simulations
  • Ability to carry out first-principles analysis and derive control/estimation specifications
  • Practical experience troubleshooting and debugging complex systems
  • Willing to do hands-on experiments and testing

The Nice-to-Haves:

  • Experience with STK, Python, Matlab/Simulink
  • Established record of spacecraft project experience
  • Experience in the design and calibration of low-cost sensors and actuators
  • Basic understanding of orbital mechanics
  • Experience in spacecraft or related flight operations
  • Significant publications or conference presentations
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