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Are you a bold thinker? We dream big at Sierra Space โ€” advocating the exploration of space, keeping service members safe and creating the systems that keep our world united and sustain our way of living. Join our team!

The Avionics Hardware Group on the Dream Chaser Program is responsible for the Dream Chaser spacecraft avionics subsystems, from detailed system engineering specification thru design, analysis, and hardware integration and testing. Navigation sensors provide the โ€œeyesโ€ of the Dream Chaser spacecraft, allowing it to determine its location and attitude during orbital and atmospheric flight.

Sierra Space, based in Louisville, Colorado with operations in Madison, Wisconsin, Durham, North Carolina, and Kennedy Space Center, Florida, designs and manufactures advanced spacecraft, satellites, propulsion and environmental systems, spacecraft subsystems and components for the U.S. government (including NASA), commercial customers and international organizations. Learn more about Sierra Space

The Systems Engineer (Avionics โ€“ Navigation) is responsible for supporting the integration of navigation sensors and other avionics into the spacecraft. You will work closely with other engineers to ensure the equipment interfaces with other subsystems and meets performance, environmental and safety requirements.

Work with hardware in the laboratory to verify it is configured and communicates properly with other avionics, then help trouble shoot problems on the real spacecraft. A knowledge of electronics design and electrical communication standards, such as RS-422/485, MIL-STD-1553, SpaceWire is desirable. Experience with aerospace navigation methods and sensors such as GPS, INS, Star Trackers, LiDARs, Radar, etc. is highly desired.


  • Bachelors of Science degree in Electrical Engineering or related discipline and typically 10+ years of relevant experience.

  • Related experience may be considered in lieu of required education

  • Practical knowledge of engineering principles and practices

  • Experience working in multi-disciplinary design and development teams

  • Excellent Communication Skills

  • Knowledge of requirements management, functional requirements parsing, derivation, and allocation; systems design, systems integration, technical risk identification and management strategies, and Verification and Validation (V&V) principles

  • An ideal candidate would have experience with high performance aircraft, launch vehicle or spacecraft avionics. Highlight your background in Navigation hardware systems (on orbit, RPO or EDL/atmospheric flight)

  • A working knowledge of digital data bus architectures (ex: MIL-STD-1553B, Ethernet, SpaceWire, RS-422, RS-485)

  • Experience with computer system design or integration of hardware and software

  • Design and integration experience with complex electro-mechanical systems or instrumentation

  • Be comfortable supporting technical meetings and reviews.

  • Ability to perform requirements analysis and trade studies.

  • Ability to identify technical problems and recommend solutions.

  • Ability to rapidly work with minimal supervision on projects involving both small and large engineering teams


  • Experience may take the form of new development, modifications, integration, verification or testing of sensors, or system integration in a custom/COTS environment

  • Exposure to HW/SW interaction, verification or validation efforts.

  • Previous experience with technical subcontract management, and/or coordination of engineering schedules and milestones

  • Experience supporting refinement of avionics architecture and specifications -- decomposing requirements, developing component specifications and developing hazard controls

  • Experience supporting procurement by identifying vendors and maintaining impeccable vendor relationships throughout life cycle

  • Experience supporting subsystem checkout during the engineering phase by authoring test plans and procedures for verifying operation of subsystem and components

  • Experience supporting the vehicle build and test as a subsystem expert

  • Experience authoring test plans and procedures for verifying operation of subsystem and components during Integration and Test

  • The ability to obtain and maintain a Security Clearance may be required Learn more about the background check process for Security Clearances


To conform to U.S. Government international trade regulations, applicant must be a U.S. Citizen, lawful permanent resident of the U.S., protected individual as defined by 8 U.S.C. 1324b(a)(3), or eligible to obtain the required authorizations from the U.S. Department of State or U.S. Department of Commerce.

With 30+ years of proven spaceflight heritage, Sierra Space has provided more than 4,000 space systems, subsystems and components to customers worldwide, and participated in more than 500 missions to space, including to Mars. The company has technology in production and in development to enable space habitats for short- and long-duration space travel, a fleet of Dream Chaser spaceplanes, and the first free-flying commercial space station. Please visit www.sierraspace.com to learn more about Sierra Space, its business areas, capabilities, programs, products and services.

Physical/Mental/Emotional Requirements:

  • Frequently walk, sit, stand, climb stairs and steps
  • Frequently repeat same hand, arm, and finger motion many times to include finger and hand dexterity
  • Rarely lifting or carrying up to 20 lbs.

Working Conditions:

  • Rarely exposed to outdoor elements (high/low temperatures, sun, rain/snow, etc.)
  • Rarely exposed to fumes or hazardous chemicals/materials
  • Rarely exposed to loud noises

Estimated Starting Salary Range: $120,552.10 - $165,759.14

Sierra Space offers annual incentive pay based upon performance that is commensurate with the level of the position.

Sierra Space offers a generous benefit package, including medical, dental, and vision plans, 401(k) with 150% match up to 8%, life insurance, 3 weeks paid time off, tuition reimbursement, and more.

At Sierra Space, our mission is to dream, innovate, inspire and empower the next generation to transform humanity through technology and imagination. As an Equal Opportunity Employer, we welcome our employees to bring their whole selves to their work. Sierra Space is committed to fostering an inclusive, accepting, and diverse environment free of discrimination on the basis of race, color, age, religion, sex, sexual orientation, gender identity, national origin, disability, or status as a protected veteran. Contributions to Sierra Space come in many shapes and styles, and we believe diversity in our workforce fosters new and greater ways to dream, innovate, and inspire.

Sierra Space logo
Sierra Space
United States, Louisville, CO
Posted 2 months ago
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