Sr. Aerodynamics Engineer

Company Details

Together we open space to change the world for good

Virgin Galactic is seeking a seasoned engineer with experience in subsonic, transonic and supersonic aircraft aerodynamics. The candidate will build on an intimate knowledge of all aircraft systems. The engineer will also support instrumentation planning, mission control preparation, data processing, and model evaluation for flight testing and vehicle envelope expansion.

The Senior Aerodynamics Engineer will be responsible for advancing the engineering for the suborbital spaceplane SpaceShipTwo, Spaceship 3, the mothership Eve, and other special projects. The Senior Aerodynamics Engineer will also be responsible for providing technical leadership and mentorship, promoting a culture of continual improvement and quality within the Aerodynamics Team.

Primary Responsibilities:

  • Design and substantiate operational flight envelopes
  • Substantiate vehicle performance and handling qualities
  • Characterize vehicle aerodynamic environments
  • Support pre-flight preparation including review of test limitations, flight test plans and procedures, flight readiness reviews, mission control room support, and post flight analysis
  • Work with other internal and external engineering groups to ensure proper application of design requirements
  • Support entry into commercial service by ensuring that regulatory and internal company requirements related to performance, handling qualities and general airworthiness are met
  • Develop standardized analysis and reporting tools
  • Perform model updates from data collected during vehicle or component testing and data created with analytical tools
  • Develop and maintain aerodynamic tools and simulation capabilities
  • Develop and maintain test databases representing all mission phases
  • Develop and improve standards, processes, and best practices
  • Determine methods and procedures on new assignments and coordinate activities of other team members

Basic Qualifications

  • Bachelor’s degree in Aerospace Engineering, and/or equivalent, with a minimum of 8 years of related experience
  • Test planning experience is highly desired, including flight and ground testing, writing test plans, instrumentation selection and planning, and data verification
  • Test execution experience is highly desired, including familiarity with standard flight test practices and safety processes
  • Experience with numerical methods, computational physics, simulation development
  • Experience in flight test aerodynamic model validation and correlation
  • Experience with full aircraft analysis – transonic required, launch vehicle desirable, supersonic highly desirable
  • Working knowledge of aircraft and spacecraft systems
  • Experience with flight dynamics 6DOF trajectory simulation
  • Familiarity with relevant aerospace standards and structural design criteria (FAA, FAA-AST, NASA, MilSpec, etc.)
  • Advanced programming skills: MATLAB, Python, C, C++
  • Strong ability to work system tasks, and adept at communicating with multiple interfaces
  • Proven ability to lead technical work in an environment with multiple stakeholders
  • Excellent proactive communication (oral, written, presentation), interpersonal, negotiation and organizational skills
  • Ability to successfully complete assigned tasks with minimal supervision and oversight
  • Applicants must be U.S. persons as defined by the ITAR (22 CFR §120.15)

Preferred Skills and Experience

  • Knowledge of software development best practices like code review and configuration management
  • Working knowledge of FORTRAN, Simulink
  • Experience with Fun3D and Pointwise as well as CATIA V5 and NASTRAN
  • Experience in mission control and console development with IADS.
  • Experience in other Flight Sciences disciplines

Tagged as: Matlab, python, C++, nasa, FAA, faa-ast, milspec

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