Navigation Engineer

    • Laurel, MD

Areyou passionate about spacecraft Navigation?

Wouldyou love to apply your technical knowledge and creativity to make innovativecontributions to some of the nation's cutting-edge space missions?

Areyou searching for a collaborative, fulfilling work environment?

If so,we're looking for someone like you to join our team at APL.

We areseeking creative engineers to help us develop, analyze, test, and deliverspacecraft Navigation systems and analysis algorithms for both Civil Space(NASA/NOAA) and National Security Space missions. Our spacecraft reach the extremes of the solarsystem, from Parker Solar Probe at the Sun, formation flying missions andassured PNT at Earth, New Horizons at Pluto, and now Dragonfly at Titan. We would love to have you apply your talentsto our challenges. As a member of ourteam, you will contribute to the development of some of our nation's mostcritical space missions, joining an industrious team of engineers who strive todeliver game-changing solutions. You will have the opportunity to support bothpre-launch spacecraft development and post-launch operations performanceanalysis and system updates. We arepassionate about our work, striving to cultivate an environment of partnershipand collaboration, and committed to making critical contributions to criticalchallenges.

As a NavigationEngineer...

  • Your primary responsibility will be leading the design, development, and delivery of the Interstellar Mapping and Acceleration Probe (IMAP) Navigation subsystem.
    • You will work closely with the Mission Design engineer to create a system design that both meets science mission objectives and navigation requirements.
    • You will assist with the integration and test of spacecraft through scenario testing and data analysis, using ODTK and STK.
    • You will support spacecraft operations through processing of radio navigation observables to compute the spacecraft orbit.
    • You will develop navigation analysis tools for pre- and post-launch activities.
  • You will also be responsible for assisting in the design, development, and delivery of other Navigation subsystems. For example:
    • Pursuing Independent Research and Development (IR&D) efforts to define and prototype the next generation of Positioning, Navigation, and Timing (PNT) systems.
    • Innovating our GPS receiver and onboard orbit determination Extended Kalman filters for various Earth orbiting spacecraft.
    • Processing optical navigation and lidar data for NASA's Dragonfly at Titan.
    • Implementing, testing, and analyzing navigation algorithms: Extended Kalman filters, batch estimators, particle filters, sigma point filters, etc.
    • Implementing optimization methods such as: quasi-Newton, Linear/Quadratic Programming, Genetic Algorithm, and Levenberg-Marquardt, on a variety of studies.
    • Implementing navigation algorithms in real-time embedded software using SIMULINK and C/C .
    • Contribute directlyto our continuously evolving code-base and navigation capabilities.

You meet our minimum qualifications for thejob if you...

  • Possess an MS in Aerospace or Electrical Engineering or related field.
  • Have at least 5 years of spacecraft mission experience in developing spacecraft navigation subsystems and analyses.
  • Have experience in Extended Kalman filters and other Bayesian Estimation or target trackers, in particular ODTK for orbit determination.
  • Are skilled in analytical and numerical computing software, such as MATLAB and C/C .
  • Are eager to learn new concepts and apply them to develop novel technologies for spacecraft PNT.
  • Are able to obtain a TS/SCI security clearance. If selected, you 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.

You'll go above and beyond our minimumrequirements if you...

  • Possess a PhD in Aerospace or Electrical Engineering or related field.
  • Have at least 8 years of spacecraft mission experience in either design, analysis, development, testing, or operations of navigation subsystems.
    • Even more desirable is previous work on Lagrange (L1) point missions.
  • Have previous experience or significant coursework on the design, implementation, and optimization of embedded software.
  • Have previous experience in the design, analysis, and development of optical (image) and lidar assisted navigation systems.
  • Able to implement and analyze image processing and lidar navigation techniques: Terrain-Relative Optical Navigation and hazard detection, such as those used on ALHAT (Autonomous Landing and Hazzard Avoidance Technology).
  • Have experience with GPS and GNSS, especially for spacecraft orbit determination.
  • Possess an active Top Secret clearance (or above).

Why work at APL?

The Johns Hopkins Applied Physics Laboratory(APL) brings world-class expertise to our nation's most critical defense,security, space and science challenges. With a wide selection of challenging,impactful work and a robust education assistance program, APL promotes aculture of life-long learning. Our employees enjoy generous benefits andhealthy work/life balance. APL's campus is located in the Baltimore-Washingtonmetro area. Learn more about our career opportunities

APL is an EqualOpportunity/Affirmative Action employer. All qualified applicants will receiveconsideration for employment without regard to race, color, religion, sex,gender identity, sexual orientation, national origin, disability status,veteran status, or any other characteristic protected by applicable law.


APL brings research applications to life in the space science, asymmetric operations, force projection, and air and missile defense categories, pioneering solutions to push scientific boundaries.

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