Guidance, Navigation, and Control Engineer

Virgin Orbit

Date: Sep 23, 2022
City: Long Beach, CA
Contract type: Full time
Virgin Orbit


Job Type:


Who we are

At Virgin Orbit, we are launching the small satellite revolution, enabling missions that were previously unimaginable. We are delivering Virgin’s legendary customer experience by combining advanced technology with a diligent, hard-working team. We have built a workplace and a workforce of the future, knowing that our decisions and investments of today are launching the industries of tomorrow. We have engaged a diverse and inclusive community of doers and dreamers alike, empowering all those working today to build satellites and constellations that will change the world.

At Virgin Orbit, we are opening space for good. Search all of our job openings on our .

Guidance, Navigation, and Control Engineer

Position Summary

Virgin Orbit (VO) is seeking a new member for our team to serve as a Guidance, Navigation, and Control Engineer. If you join us in this position, you will assist in completing the development of guidance, navigation, and control algorithms for LauncherOne, a small-satellite launch vehicle program. This role is for a hands-on person with great attention to detail and excellent people skills. This is a full-time position at our rocket factory in beautiful Long Beach, California.

Your Mission
  • Integration, testing, and analysis of the GNC flight software
  • Development and Validation of a 6 degree of freedom launch vehicle simulation
  • Defining and verifying system level requirements to drive mission success
  • Develop and improve existing actuator and sensor model implementation
  • Generating analysis tools to assess simulation, hardware-in-the-loop, and in-flight testing performance
  • Become responsible for mission specific performance tuning to meet customer requirements.
  • Help Virgin Orbit do our part to make the world a better place
  • Constantly learn new things—and share them with your team members
  • Performs other duties as assigned
What you bring

If you want to join us, you’d better have all of these…
  • BS in Mechanical, Aerospace, or Electrical Engineering, with 2 – 5 years engineering experience
  • Knowledge of sensor and actuator analysis, modeling, and test methodology
  • Familiarity of launch vehicle Guidance laws or similar
  • Strong understanding of rigid body dynamics
  • Demonstrated knowledge of Matlab, Simulink, and C++
  • Open minded and willing to think outside of the box to solve challenging problems
  • Ability and willingness to thrive in a fast-paced, rapidly changing work environment
  • Self-driven, highly motivated, and committed to improvement, inter-team communication skills, and attention to detail
  • Must be able to work all shifts and available for overtime as well as weekends when needed
  • Physically able to handle items weighing up to 10 lbs (unassisted)
  • Must be a U.S. person as defined by the ITAR (22 CFR §120.15)
  • Must be able to provide proof of US-approved Covid-19 full vaccination status, unless otherwise exempted by an approved reasonable medical or religious accommodation from Virgin Orbit
… and you should probably have a bunch of these, too.
  • Masters degree in Mechanical, Aerospace, or Electrical Engineering
  • Direct experience in development of an orbital vehicle system
  • Strong understanding of orbital mechanics
  • Hands on testing of actuators and sensors
  • Background in some phases of program development, between preliminary design through production
  • GNC algorithm development on a rocket or missile system
  • Passion for space exploration and a firm belief in the utility of affordable access to space
  • Ability to thrive as a ‘one person team’
  • Ability to add something unique and positive to our team
  • Generally high level of all-around awesomeness
ITAR Requirements

To conform to U.S. Government space technology export regulations, applicant must be a U.S. citizen, lawful permanent resident of the U.S., protected individual as defined by ITAR (22 CFR §120.15) or eligible to obtain the required authorizations from the U.S. Department of State.

Personal Requirements

Our idea of a happy life: build rockets, work with brilliant people, serve purposeful customers, and open access to space. Sir Richard Branson’s belief is “If you get the perfect mix of people working for your company, you have a far greater chance of success.” From the very start, we have placed top priority on growing and fostering a team of creative, diverse, and talented women and men.

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Virgin Orbit is an Equal Opportunity Employer; employment with Virgin Orbit is governed on the basis of merit, competence and qualifications and will not be influenced in any manner by race, color, religion, gender, national origin/ethnicity, veteran status, disability status, age, sexual orientation, marital status, mental or physical disability or any other legally protected status.

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