Communications/Software Engineer


The Johns Hopkins University Applied Physics Laboratory (APL), a national leader in scientific research and development, located midway between Baltimore and Washington, DC is seeking an experienced communications/software engineer to support National Security Space tasks.

Job Summary: Support diverse project teams, cost, schedule, and requirements for National Security Space tasks. Provide specific detailed technical leadership in guiding sponsors through the DoD acquisition process that results in prototyping efforts, proposals, and other significant SMC-related tasks with particular focus on communication systems and network technologies.


Technical contributor throughout system development effort, includes proposal preparation, design and development, integration and test, deployment, and Training. Initial tasks will focus on:

1. Leading the development of technical inputs to key documents (TRD and Integration Plan) and

a. Generate risk reduction approaches for technology developments.

b. Serve as programmatic and technical lead for defining technical solutions for developments of critical systems as well as prioritize key activities

2. Technical contributor of a combined government, contractor and JHU/APL team throughout all phases of the system development process, studies or system development efforts, including proposal preparation, project initiation, forming a team to design, development, integration and test, deploy, and operate a Government system. Specifically work with external with particular emphasis on mitigating and containing program and technical risks.

3. Guide sponsors through rapid development processes for procuring communications capabilities from concept definition through Integration and test. This includes recommending prototyping activities to contain program risks, offering APL capabilities to achieve program success. Develop innovative approaches to accelerate development and fielding of advanced concepts and lead development of critical components.

4. Technical lead/contributor of design, development, implementation, analysis, and test applications related to communication systems, distributed computing, data networks, network simulation, and tactical network performance and vulnerability assessment.

5. Apply systems engineering processes to translate concepts into technical requirements. Participate in system design, development, prototyping, and demonstration efforts. Validate and verify design specifications, document requirements, conduct system verification and analyze system performance.

6. Interact closely with sponsors, system and software engineers and present analysis, propose technical solutions, implement solutions in prototypes, measure effects, and validate results. Additionally, brief approach, implementation and progress to APL management and sponsors. Conduct sponsor engagement, primarily with the USAF/SMC Directorates, and coordinate these activities with the APL’s NSS business area leadership in Los Angeles.

7. Follow the management and contracting processes and objectives of APL.

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:

  • Advanced degree in a technical discipline related to DoD procurement / acquisitions.
  • DoD experience, preferably in rapid prototyping of communications systems.
  • Experience in computer / communications forensics and reverse engineering techniques.
  • Minimum of 8 years of experience in communications systems.
  • Outstanding leadership qualities and skills in team building and managing multidisciplinary technical teams. Excellent interpersonal skills, oral and written communication skills.
  • Experience with C, C , Python, JAVA, HTML, CSS, PHP, JavaScript, Ruby, Perl, and SQL.
  • Experience in the initial phases of the life cycle of a project, including technical trades, identification of risks and risk reduction alternatives, schedule, cost, funding, scope realism of task, critical system interfaces, requirements management, resource allocation, staffing considerations.
  • Familiarity with operating in highly classified constrained secure environments is a must.
  • Current TS/SCI clearance

Desired Qualifications:

10 years or more experience in technical development, communications systems, technical management, and systems engineering. Undergraduate technical degree is preferred. Related graduate degree desired. Experience in Special Access Programs preferred. Experience in sponsor engagement and/or project management/ oversight with Air Force SMC or Space Command experience. Network and system security familiarity, e.g. Network , Security , CISSP or similar expertise is a plus.

Special Working Conditions: May require occasional travel, OCONUS travel as required.

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 www.jhuapl.edu.

Equal Employment Opportunity: Johns Hopkins University Applied Physics Laboratory 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, and values diversity in its workforce. 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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