Thermal & Test Engineer – Space Systems

Company Details

To lead innovation, manufacturing and operations

Be more than just an employee number! Join Terran Orbital, the leader in innovation, manufacturing and operations in the small satellite industry. We are a pioneer in the miniaturization of space technologies and the delivery of responsive space solutions. We are a unique, fast growing, and trusted team focused on quickly and economically designing, building, launching, and operating state-of-the-art satellites for advanced mission constellations.

Thermal engineers are involved in all aspects of a spacecraft lifetime. They support spacecraft thermal systems configuration from concept level through design reviews, design verification, and operations. In addition to predictive and analytical work, Thermal Engineers may serve on-console during spacecraft test activities and/or operations which can include periods of off-hours or on call work.

Essential Duties/Responsibilities

  • Work with a multidisciplinary team to reduce thermal risk by identifying the constraining elements of a thermal design and recommend mitigation strategies from concept level to design, production, and operation
  • Work with spacecraft system engineers to reduce spacecraft CONOPS (Concept of Operations) into representative thermal design scenarios
  • Develop thermal models of active and passive thermal designs using a mixture of numerical solutions and hand calculations of spacecraft systems, subsystems, avionics, and mechanisms that predict temperature margins in a variety of space thermal environments
  • Participate in spacecraft build and testing campaigns related to the thermal design aspect of the spacecraft
  • Prepare technical documents and PowerPoint presentations, develop thermal verification test plans and support test activities, monitor and correlation test results to model predictions
  • Develop summaries to present results of analysis and tests to Managers, Customers, and/or Stakeholders
  • Develop tools to support concept trade studies and post-processing analysis
  • Other duties may be assigned as needed


  • Bachelor’s degree in Mechanical or Aerospace Engineering with a Thermal focus or similar
  • Must possess an understanding of the basic principles of radiation and conduction heat transfer in conjunction with space environment heating effects and parameters associated with spaceflight applications
  • Proven knowledge of spacecraft mission design and associated subsystems.
  • Strong knowledge of spacecraft thermal management and surface treatments
  • Knowledge of environmental requirements, engineering, and testing and hands on engineering project experience including use of data acquisition systems
  • Comfortable working in fast-paced, start-up environment with a strong desire to be a key contributor on a small team
  • Highly responsible team player with positive attitude and excellent communication and documentation skills
  • Experience with Solidworks or other CAD software
  • Experience developing detailed thermal and simplified thermal models for spacecraft systems, subsystems, and components
  • Proficiency with computational scripting languages (Matlab, Python, Mathematica, etc)
  • Strong desire to develop tools to automate repetitive tasks that reduce analysis turnaround time
  • Proficiency with Thermal Desktop

Desired skills/Experience

  • Master of Science degree in Mechanical or Aerospace engineering with a Thermal focus or similar desired
  • Experience with build integration and testing of propulsion, thermal, electrical and/or structural systems; including, but not limited to: vibration, shock, thermal, vacuum, and radiation testing
  • Experience in a production environment within the space/ aerospace industry

Tagged as: thermal desktop, mathematica, Matlab, python

Visit us on LinkedInVisit us on FacebookVisit us on Twitter