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Technologist II At Jet Propulsion Laboratory

Location: Pasadena, California

Job Description

Overview

New ideas are all around us, but only a few will change the world. That’s our focus at JPL. We ask the biggest questions, then search the universe for answers—literally. We build upon ideas that have guided generations, then share our discoveries to inspire generations to come. Your mission—your opportunity—is to seek out the answers that bring us one step closer. If you’re driven to discover, create, and inspire something that lasts a lifetime and beyond, you’re ready for JPL.

This unique opportunity is part of the Autonomous Systems Division, which is responsible for technology development, advanced concepts, design, development, delivery, integration and test, verification and validation, and operation of Command and Data Handling (C&DH) Hardware, Flight Software, Power Systems, Robotic Systems, and Guidance and Control.

As a Software Engineer for the Small Scale Flight Software Group, you will be working for JPL's Flight Electronics and Software Systems Section, which provides leadership and unique world-class expertise in Avionics Systems Engineering, Flight Command and Data Handling Hardware, Flight Software, Simulation and Support Equipment, Avionics Integration, Test, and Operations and Advanced Electronics, Processor, and Software Research.

Located in Pasadena, California, JPL has a campus-like environment situated on 177 acres in the foothills of the San Gabriel Mountains and offers a work environment unlike any other: we inspire passion, foster innovation, build collaboration, and reward excellence.

Responsibilities

As a key member of the Small Scale Flight Software Group (348C), you will perform software engineering activities associated with the production and delivery of embedded flight software products for small scale projects developing CubeSats, small satellites and spacecraft payloads where the typical flight software team sizes are between one and five people. These activities include requirements development, software architecture and design, and code implementation, along with extensive user and system level testing. You will also perform computer science research and technology development activities that advance the state of the art in terms of both expanded flight software system capability and improved development tools and techniques.

The software engineer would typically work under the guidance of a Cognizant Engineer to develop a solid understanding of the required capabilities of the software system. The engineer would then be responsible for determining the software approach for the development and ultimately be responsible for the final coded capability. This work includes support of software level peer reviews and would also include formal testing of peer developed capabilities.
Will be a member of the Small Scale Flight Software Group within the Flight Software and Avionics Systems Section, reporting to the Group Supervisor. Will perform computer science research and technology development activities that advance the state of the art in terms of both expanded flight software system capability and improved development tools and techniques. Will work independently and with other researchers in development and implementation of plans and conduct applied research in software and system modeling, verification and analysis. Will interact extensively with project teams and other internal and external customer contacts. Will work independently and with teams developing and implementing new software development tools and techniques and applying to flight projects.

Qualifications

This position typically requires a Bachelor’s degree in Computer Science, or related discipline with a minimum of 3 years of related experience; a Master’s degree in similar disciplines with a minimum of 1 year of related experience; or a PhD in similar disciplines.

Required Skills:

  • Broad knowledge in one or more related fields of the following areas: programming in C/C++, formal methods such as SAT/SMT solving, data structures and algorithms, and hardware/software interfaces.
  • Extensive understanding and wide application of principles, theories, concepts and techniques in functional, object-oriented, domain-specific, and declarative programming languages.
  • Extensive knowledge of applicable industry and/or academic practices and standards in software engineering.
  • Strong verbal and written communication, presentation, and interpersonal skills with ability to work in a team environment.
  • Minimum 3.0 GPA.

Desired Skills:

  • Ability to solve complex software problems and improve current software development processes.
  • Desire to infuse research results to existing flight and ground missions.
  • Experience in the development of research proposals.
  • Interest in participating in and directing efforts in ongoing and future missions.
  • Eagerness both to lead and work with scientists from JPL and universities in a flight project environment.
  • Professional reputation as a productive researcher and a record of peer-reviewed publications as first author.
  • Familiarity with software architecture, software product lines, and scripting languages such as Python and/or Java.
  • Interest in research proposal generation for the advancement of software architecture/design for both high-performance multicore flight computing, as well as light-weight low-power computing.
Will:
  • Be a member of the Small Scale Flight Software Group and will report to the Group Supervisor.
  • Be responsible for performing research in technology related to high-performance flight computing systems.
  • Participate in seeking research funding and publishing research results, as well as supporting the subsequent task activities.
  • Participate in flight projects for the requirements capture, architecture, design, implementation and test of embedded, mission-critical flight software with stringent requirements in timing, performance, and complex functionality.
  • Perform complex and varied job functions and activities within discipline.
  • Design, implement and modify complex engineering applications in one or more of the following relevant engineering (or related) fields: spacecraft avionics, flight software systems, or embedded real-time control systems.
  • Partner with other engineers to deploy and maintain complex software systems.
  • Work independently on important assignments and projects with only limited supervision, typically receiving only general instructions.
  • Exercise discretion and independent judgment to compare and evaluate various methods, approaches, and resources and decide which will best accomplish each aspect of such assignments and projects.
  • Be responsible for approving work of others and ensuring compliance with requirements on significant projects and assignments.
  • Be responsible for completing significant project or assignment milestones.
  • Provide direction and mentoring to others within the organization.
  • Apply creativity and innovation to address important issues.
  • Exercise discretion and independent judgment in evaluating potential approaches and solutions to significant problems and determining appropriate resolutions.
  • Interact frequently with customers, stakeholders and peers inside and outside organization on significant matters.
  • Contribute as a key team member on teams inside or outside own organization, project, activity or function, potentially as a team lead.