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  • GNC and Avionics Engineer

GNC and Avionics Engineer

  • Indefinite
  • Full time
  • 08040, Barcelona, Spain
  • Flying Vehicles

About Pangea Aerospace:

Pangea Aerospace is an aerospace start-up based in Barcelona focusing on developing disruptive technologies for small satellite launch vehicles. We are searching for new team members that want to contribute on creating the next generation of launchers.

Our mission is to develop the technology that enables a more efficient, sustainable, and commercial access to space. The company successfully tested a world’s first 3D-printed aerospike engine, introducing several new technologies into its design. Pangea Aerospace is leading the development of innovative launcher technology making reusable rockets the catalyst for sustainable and low-cost access to space.

We are looking for open-minded, driven and talented professionals to join our international team in Barcelona.

Pangea Aerospace is privately funded, supported by national and European institutions and a strong network of European partners.

About your job:

The guidance, navigation, and control element of a launch vehicle, together with the overall flight management, is one of the more important challenges to address when developing a fully functional launch vehicle.

You would be the main responsible for the overall avionics and GNC subsystem for the MESO launch vehicle, taking on the role of working with external partners and suppliers to interface and ultimately integrate the entire avionics subsystem with the launch vehicle. To do so you will need to check the performance of the full vehicle GNC loop through numerical simulations. This data you will have to use to e.g. size actuators, together with the rest of team, and to set the requirements for the avionics system. The team will also use the simulation outputs to derive e.g. flight loads and flight envelopes, to be used by other disciplines to further the design of the vehicle.

Your role will involve firstly creating models of the GNC system using software such as e.g. MATLAB/Simulink and ASTOS to classify the vehicle’s stability, loads, precision, extreme envelopes, required actuator sizes etc. This might also involve conceptual level work of control law modeling. You will also need to perform more detailed work on the vehicle’s operational/GNC flight modes. Furthermore, another important part of your role will involve the creation of requirements for the avionics system, as well as selection of the avionics solution and associated components, and interfacing with the avionics suppliers. You will be expected to act as the intermediary between the avionics suppliers and the vehicle system engineer, to make sure the system being developed will fully meet the vehicle’s needs.

You should be comfortable working independently and taking on responsibility, and you should hold sufficient expertise to be able to understand general avionics jargon, and enough understanding of GNC to fully grasp such concepts as closed-loop PID control, stability margins, controller bandwidth, Kalman filtering, etc.

Your challenges and responsibilities:

Using tools such as Simulink and ASTOS to construct full GNC models of the launch vehicle, both for ascent and reentry.

Evaluating the vehicle’s stability margins and from that being able to derive requirements on navigation accuracy, actuator sizing, and allowable flight envelopes.

Comparing and selecting avionics components and systems.

Creating an exhaustive and “water-proof” set of requirements for the avionics subsystem and communicating these to suppliers.

Following up with avionics suppliers through one-on-one meetings, and by writing RFIs, RFQs, etc., as well as evaluating responses, together with the system engineer.

Tracing the developments of the avionics suppliers to make sure the final developed solution will meet the set requirements and needs of Pangea Aerospace.

Interfacing with all fields of engineering in a multi-disciplinary team to advance the progress of the entire system.

Writing of engineering documentation as well as vehicle user manuals etc.

Assistance with ad-hoc assignments related to your role, as required by Pangea Aerospace.

What you need to be successful:

Master’s degree in aerospace engineering or related field.

Good understanding of GNC.

Good understanding of control theory.

Fair understanding of electronics.

Experience working with flight controllers/flight computers and/or avionics.

Good understanding of Flight Mechanics & Atmospheric Flight.

Good understanding of Astrodynamics / Orbital Mechanics & Exo-Atmospheric Flight.

Programming skills in e.g. Python / Matlab / Octave, or in a similar high-level language.

Understanding of coordinate systems, attitude representations, and coordinate system transformations.

Experience working with requirements and ECSS standards.

Experience with trajectory optimization and trajectory optimization software, e.g. STK, ASTOS, GMAT, etc. is meritorious.

Experience in working with the development of space vehicles, reentry vehicles, and/or space missions is highly meritorious, but not required.

Experience working with suppliers is meritorious, but not strictly required.

Meticulous and procedural mindset.

Our working environment:

Capable of working in a flexible, open-minded, and multi-cultural environment.

Passionate about your work and willing to both teach and learn.

Start-up mindset.

Creative and with experience in overcoming failure.