Spacecraft Operations Engineer (Cluster-2 & Solar Orbiter)

Company Details

VisionSpace Technologies is a dynamic and experienced consulting, technology and engineering service business which develops and integrates enterprise-level solutions for the Space sector. Our team consists of highly skilled professionals focused on delivering smart and reliable solutions in the fields of Aerospace Engineering, Cyber Security Engineering, Automated Systems Solutions and Machine Learning.

We are looking for an experienced engineer to join our Spacecraft Operations Engineering (SOE) Service team, based at the European Spacecraft Operations Centre (ESOC), in Darmstadt, Germany. The areas of responsibility for this engineer encompass from Operations Supervision and Mission Planning, to assuming the responsibility and performing activities for additional subsystems or systems within the scope of general SOE services, including testing, validation and operation of the Mission Control System, Mission Planning System and Simulator. The engineer will be primarily assigned to support customer’s Heliophysics Missions Operations Unit (OPS-OPS) which encompasses Cluster II (in extended routine) and Solar Orbiter (in cruise) missions within the Solar System & Exploration Missions Division but with the possibility of supporting other missions within this division.


The Engineering Activities include (but are not limited to) the following tasks:

  • Support CDF, Prepare MOAD and CaC, Define Operations Concepts, High Level Operations and Ground Segment Requirements, Tailor the OIRD, Forecasting and modelling, coordination with Mission Analysis
  • Provide consultancy to the project on system and operations issues, on request by Project
  • Participation in S/C design. Focus to steer Data Handling towards solutions that maximise commonality with other missions. Special attention to VC allocation, S11, S15, CEL, File Management, ULFT & DLFT. Use of common DB naming convention a plus. Also expert review of AOCS, TTC and DB/SW/OBCPs.
  • Flow-down of MIP into GS Requirements. Important to avoid unnecesary departures impacting common infrastructure solutions. Emphasis on reuse of common Ops Concept, reuse of common Interfaces.
  • Flow-down of top-level GS Requirements into lower-level User requirements and SW requirements. Important to combine use of existing infrastructure were possible. Includes MCS, MPS, SIM, MOIS, PSS. Preparation and execution of GS reviews. Documentation preparation
  • Preparation of Test Campaign: GSSTP, flow-down to User Acceptance, SVT/IGST and SOV Test Plans. Links with definition of FOP list.
  • Execution of Data Systems testing and validation upon delivery
  • Systems test interfacing and coordination towards Proj/Ind.
  • Definition and Execution of test procedures during IGST, SVT, DFT and other end-to-end testing
  • Managing FOP. Define top-level FOP structure (FOP list). Maximise commonality with existing mission FOPs, specially for routine tasks (start pass, etc). Adopt common procedure and sequence naming convention, FOP book structure. Plan deliveries
  • Writing and testing FOP procedures
  • Configuration of MPS rules, Automation, creation of OBCPs, setup missions models (e.g. Power/Link Budget). Within the constraints of the mission, attempt to reuse existing planning+automation approach/OBCP concepts. Creation of Simulation breakpoints. Managing MIB (TM/TC DB)
  • Definition of On-board Software Maintenance Concept
  • Definition and organisation of Engineering Model hand over to ESOC, defintion of the relevant procedures and processes, testing preparation
  • Mission phase definition, High level and Timeline planning
  • Learning and Training, simulation campaigns, inputs to task#22 for FOP and MIB updates and validation, Dress rehearsal, launch window variability, LEOP shift pattern, critical real time operations, Coordination with PI and SOC
  •  Pass monitoring and control, anomaly detection and reaction (as per available procedure) or escalation, manual procedure execution, schedule loading, track coordination with ESTRACK, logging and pass reporting, request engineering support, commanding during anomaly recovery, etc.
  • On-call presence; troubleshoot problems during pass conduction, Restoring Spacecraft to Nominal Operation, detecting and fixing known anomalies (OOL/CEL…), data gap recovery, Pass reporting, inputs to regular reporting. Execution of recovery actions as decided during Anomaly Management.
  • Maintain/upgrade MPS rules, Automation scripts, OBCPs, mission models, etc. Coordinate with other missions to maintain maximum commonality. Maintain/modify FOP procedures, MIB database in response to operations changes
  • Organise MRB, perform investigations (determine sequence of events and cause) and plan recovery or adaptation of operations.
  • Define the strategy and high level planning for ground segment evolution in flight, Includes coordination SW upgrades, HW procurement, System tests planning and conduction. Define/plan systems evolution and migration needs.
  • Testing, validation of patch deliveries
  • Coordination with Mission Manager, SOC, SWT, Other agencies, includes supporting the Science Working groups, the Mission Extension Reviews
  • Daily Operational coordination with Fdyn, ESTRACK, SWS, ICT, Space Debris, station usage planning, Fdyn requirements for Radiometry, data exchange interfaces, etc.
  • Execute the different MP processes: LTP, MTP, STP, VSTP, etc. and generate the corresponding products. Aim to maintain a common baseline for the division.
  • Consolidates and issues regular (e.g. weekly, monthly, etc.) reports, prepare Mission Extension proposals, define service needs, define strategies for operations evolution, decide on critical operations, procure equipment and define service provisions (e.g. systems maintenance, tracking, collision avoidance, frequency management, etc.), revise and maintain CaC, ambassadorship for the mission, manage training, coordinate usage of common assets, audits and quality management, High level (long term) coordination with ground segment support teams (changes to support profile).


  • University degree or equivalent education in Computer Science, Electronic Engineering, Aerospace Engineering or Telecommunications Engineering

Essential Skills

  • Spacecraft System and Subsystem knowledge (AOCS/DH/OBSM/Power/Thermal/TTC/Payload)
  • Experience in activities applicable to spacecraft operations
  • Coordination and interaction with other service providers in operations and other fields (team player).

Desirable Skills

  • Experience in programming in Python and SW Engineering practices and technology (SQL/NoSQL DB, Angular, Django, Docker, GITLAB, webservices, etc.)
  • Experience in the generation of nominal & contingency procedures
  • Familiarity with satellite control systems, in particular SCOS-2000
  • Familiarity with On-board SW (and OBCP development)
  • Familiarity with operational simulators, especially the ones based on SimSat
  • Familiarity with deep space missions
  • Familiarity with MOIS
  • The ability to multi-task efficiently; working on multiple activities, multiple subsystems and if applicable multiple missions simultaneously.
  • Experience in testing and validation of ground segment systems

We are committed to an inclusive and diverse VisionSpace Technologies. Our company is an equal opportunity employer. We do not discriminate based on race, colour, ethnicity, ancestry, national origin, religion, sex, gender, gender identity, gender expression, sexual orientation, age, disability, veteran status, genetic information, marital status or any legally protected status.

Tagged as: AOCS, payload, thermal, tt&c, DH, OBSM, Power

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