Aerothermal Engineer

The Johns Hopkins University Applied Physics Laboratory (APL), a national leader in scientific research and development, is located midway between Baltimore and Washington, DC. We are seeking a highly motivated, creative programmer to join a dynamic diverse group providing superior mechanical and aeronautical engineering services and products to address the hard challenges for programs of national importance.

Job Summary: Predict aerothermal behavior of new hypersonic glide vehicles and scramjet missiles in endo-atmospheric flight conditions. Create innovative aerothermal predictions and advance numerical simulation capabilities.

Duties (Listed in order of importance with the estimated amount of time spent at each task):

  1. Use these numerical models to predict aerothermal response of hypersonic glide vehicles and scramjet missiles in endo-atmospheric flight conditions. Create innovative aerothermal methodologies using and improving current and new numerical simulation capabilities including CFD to capture relevant physics of interest with materials that are potentially ablating. (40%)
  2. Participate in efforts to experimentally characterize new thermal protection system materials at the laboratory level, wind tunnel and arc jet facilities to take advantage of new state of the art materials and analysis capabilities. Work with an experienced team to analyze and develop a new innovative hypersonic glide vehicle design ensuring optimal system trades. Support the vehicle through a series of flight tests. (30%)
  3. Close collaboration with structural analysts of high temperature ablating thermal protection materials in non-equilibrium flow conditions with coupled thermal-structural nonlinear and micromechanical analyses. (20%)
  4. Document results in technical memoranda and papers, present findings to government agencies, flight test mission planners, relevant professional publications and conferences. (10%)

Note: This job summary and listing of duties is for the purpose of describing the position and its essential functions at time of hire and may change over time.

Required Qualifications:
MS degree in Mechanical or Aerospace Engineering or related science. Highly knowledgeable in one or more of the following areas. Aerothermal heating, thermochemical ablation, chemically reacting flows, chemical/thermal nonequilibrium flowfields, radiation transport, scientific numerical methods including CFD, turbulence, transition and diffusion. Programming experience writing codes using state-of-the-art scientific computing techniques. Excellent written and verbal communication skills.

Ability to obtain a Secret level clearance.

Desired Qualifications

PhD and/or greater than four years experience in aerothermodynamics, derivation of fundamental ablation properties, aerothermal heating correlations, next generation ablation solvers, thermal protection system materials and properties, radiation transport, electro-optical and infrared signatures of hard-bodies, plumes and trails. Creating, running and integrating CFD solutions with other phenomenologies and solvers of interest. Extensive C/C programming experience. Strong understanding of thermal-structural analysis of composite materials at high temperatures and their non-linear response while ablating. Familiarity with composite material science, technology, design, fabrication, characterization and testing for extreme temperature applications.

Special Working Conditions: Occasional travel to sponsor, contractor, and peer organization facilities for meetings, testing reviews, publishing and participating in relevant professional society conferences.

Security: Applicant selected will be subject to a government security clearance investigation and must meet the requirements for access to classified information. Eligibility requirements include U.S. citizenship.

Benefits: APL offers a comprehensive benefits package including a liberal vacation plan, a matching retirement program, significant educational assistance, a scholarship tuition program for staff with dependents, and competitive salaries commensurate with skills and experience. For more information about our organization, please visit our web site at

Equal Employment Opportunity: Johns Hopkins University/Applied Physics Laboratory (APL) is an Equal Opportunity/Affirmative Action employer that complies with Title IX of the Education Amendments Acts of 1972, as well as other applicable laws. All qualified applicants will receive consideration for employment without regard to race, color, religion, sexual orientation, gender identity, national origin, disability, or protected Veteran status.

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