Principal Propulsion Systems Engineer, Neutron

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Rocket Lab

Rocket Lab is a vertically integrated provider of small launch services, satellites, and spacecraft components. Our mission is to open access to space to improve life on Earth. Our team is over 1,300 people strong and we’re adding to it every week. Collaboration is at our core – every idea is heard, and everyone makes a difference. Teams are nimble, decisions are made quickly, and we are action oriented.


Neutron is a medium lift launch vehicle capable of delivering the mega constellations of tomorrow, high assurance payloads, and human spaceflight. As a highly reusable launch platform, Neutron will deliver a highly cost-effective and reliable launch solution leveraging Rocket Lab’s proven execution history with the Electron program. 


Rocket Lab seeks a Principal Systems Engineer to help build the Neutron platform: Rocket Lab’s medium lift, reusable launch vehicle capable of human spaceflight.

As a Principal Systems Engineer - Propulsion, you will guide a set of multi-disciplinary teams to align Archimedes engine development with the program’s strategy; functional, performance, and safety requirements; and technical maturity phases.

Systems Engineers combine technical excellence with strengths in technical planning and communication. Successful candidates in this role will thrive in ambiguity, and are excited to work in a small, high performing team focused on continued learning and growth.

This position is ideal for an experienced, multidisciplinary engineer keen to support a complex project from conceptual design through to integration and launch.


  • Work closely with design engineers to rapidly assess conceptual designs, perform system trade studies, develop integrated design solutions, formulate system margin strategy and performance parameters

  • You will combine technical expertise in propulsion with a broader awareness of several other launch vehicle disciplines such as fluid systems, mechanisms, avionics, and/or software.

  • You will be adept at managing to a plan, and comfortable adjusting in response to evolving requirements or external constraints.

  • You will be able to clearly describe Neutron’s architecture to internal and external customers, and to inspire a team to deliver this vision.

  • Actively contribute to technical decision making including conceptual, preliminary, and critical design, test readiness, change management, and risk reviews.

  • Proactively identify and solve technical challenges to allow projects to proceed at pace.

  • Mentor and technically assist other engineers


  • 7+ year’s industry experience in the design, development, and test of propulsion systems (i.e. Combustion Devices, Turbomachinery, Structures, Propellant Delivery Systems, Thrust Vector Control)
  • Demonstrated experience in delivering complex multidisciplinary systems
  • Proven track record of technical leadership and mentorship on projects from concept to completion.
  • Proven communication skills and the ability to build strong working relationships with colleagues and engineering professionals
  • The ability to work to tight deadlines within a high-pressure environment
  • Strong desire to learn new material in order to solve difficult, ambiguous challenges.


Important information:


To conform to US Government space technology export regulations, applicants must be a US citizen, lawful permanent resident of the US, protected individual as defined by 8 USC 1324b(a)(3), or eligible to obtain the required authorization from the US Department of State.

Rocket Lab USA is an Equal Opportunity Employer, employment with Rocket Lab USA 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, gender identity, marital status, mental or physical disability or any other legally protected status

Rocket Lab
Rocket Lab

United States, Long Beach, California

Posted 2 months ago

Job offer closed

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