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Spacecraft Propulsion Development Engineer


This position will support ispace's lunar lander development program in the area of spacecraft propulsion. ispace is a leading micro-robotics Japanese company with a subsidiary in the United States and another in Europe. ispace’s Hakuto rover won the Google XPRIZE mobility milestone award and is a leading contender for the $20M Grand Prize. ispace’s lunar lander is its next step towards prospecting for, mining and utilizing lunar resources to expand human presence in space.

The ideal candidate will have broad knowledge of spacecraft propulsion technology, especially chemical propulsion systems. Most importantly, working knowledge and specific experience related to propulsion system design, development, integration, and testing is required. This position will be responsible for supporting spacecraft detailed design. Advising the design team on design for manufacturing, design for testing, and detailed design best practices, will also be required. The spacecraft propulsion development engineer will also focus on the execution of component, subsystem, and system level build & test campaigns, actively engaging with other spacecraft system engineers in the effort of timely execution of program level goals.



  • Actively participate in propulsion system detailed design process, providing expertise in the field of best practices, standards, and manufacturing techniques.
  • Provide support in the production of component and assembly drawings, not only related to the propulsion system parts, but also test hardware.
  • Maintain ownership of propulsion system development planning and execution, taking responsibility for the timely completion of the propulsion system build & test campaign.
  • Support formulation of the propulsion system, as well as the whole spacecraft test requirements. Manage and maintain the database of test specifications
  • Support formulation of assembly and operational requirements. Provide inputs into the development of assembly, test, and operational procedures.
  • Provide expertise in the fields of assembly & test facility selection, as well as the selection of potential subcontractors.
  • Provide advice on the selection, integration and calibration of spacecraft instrumentation, including test measurement instrumentation, R&D instrumentation, and flight instrumentation. Support data acquisition system integration and set-up.
  • Work closely with the Avionics, Guidance, Navigation and Control (GNC), Power & Communications, and other teams to ensure holistic approach to spacecraft instrumentation.
  • Work closely with Quality Assurance to ensure the integrity of test artifacts as well as safe and successful completion of tests.
  • Identify possible development, integration & test risks and suggest mitigation strategies.
  • Maintain strong communication with propulsion system and other spacecraft systems design engineers, reporting possible issues. Advise on detailed design standards and potential re-design requirements.
  • Actively take part in Root Cause Analysis investigations. Maintain a log of lessons learned.
  • Maintain strong communication with the spacecraft development team leadership.
  • Ensure that the team shared objectives are met in line with the program expectations.


  • Master's degree in Aerospace Engineering, or equivalent.
  • Five or more years of industrial experience in propulsion system design, analysis, planning and execution of test campaigns.
  • Proficiency in the understanding of technical drawings.
  • Working knowledge of detailed design standards, including standard propulsion and electrical connections, parts, and assembly procedures.
  • Working knowledge of instrumentation, telemetry, and data acquisition systems.
  • Knowledge of propulsion component, subsystem and system testing.


  • Ten or more years of experience in the field of development, integration, and testing.
  • Experience working on space projects, preferably in the field of spacecraft propulsion.
  • Familiarity with quality standards, i.e. ECSS-Q-ST-70.
  • Working knowledge of the material selection process. Familiarity with fracture mechanisms.
  • A very good understanding of hardware, control systems, and fault finding.
  • Experience in the design and deployment of assembly, integration, and test procedures.
  • Proficiency in the understanding of electrical schematic diagrams.