Ground Systems Aerospace Engineer (0546U), Space Sciences Laboratory - 40911
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The Space Sciences Laboratory (SSL) is an Organized Research Unit (ORU) of the Berkeley campus reporting to the Vice Chancellor for Research. SSL's primary goal is to foster research in space-related sciences and to provide education for the next generation of space scientists. Research at SSL, led by Berkeley faculty and SSL Senior Fellows, focuses on experiments and observations carried out in space as well as theoretical and basic research.
The Space Sciences Laboratory at the University of California at Berkeley operates a satellite Mission Operations Center (MOC) with responsibility to control a fleet of (currently) seven NASA-funded satellites, which pursue investigations in furtherance of Space Sciences Laboratory's scientific goals. Four more satellites are currently in development, with two bound for Mars. The MOC is responsible for all aspects of flight operations of these satellites: ground station antenna operations, communication pass and science planning, real-time command and control, flight dynamics and navigation, health and safety monitoring, data recovery, and delivery of raw data for further analysis by scientific teams. The ground segment of the MOC is the synthesis of hardware, software and network elements that are needed to perform flight operations in a reliable, automated, and low-cost manner.
In addition to operating existing projects, the mission operations group gets involved in the mission development, integration, and testing phases of new projects, during which the ground segment must be adapted and expanded to support a diversity of mission, spacecraft, and instrument designs. The applicant to this position would assist in and take leadership on various aspects of this adaptation and expansion, while also helping to maintain and improve the ground segment for existing projects.
The Mission Operations Center uses the Linux operating system, and runs a combination of in-house developed software (written largely C, C++, and C shell scripts) as well as commercial and government off-the-shelf (COTS and GOTS) applications. Git is used for revision control. Existing in-house software systems leverage a MySQL database and Qt 5 for cross-platform GUI and networking support. The applicant must have demonstrable experience with the software design and maintenance lifecycle in a high-level, object-oriented language, and abilities in software development of application-level client/server TCP/IP networking. Familiarity with the Linux operating system is highly desirable. The applicant may also be called upon for occasional travel to support integration of hardware and software solutions that the MOC provides to remote partners. Familiarity with concepts of telemetry and telecommand encoding, such as Consultative Committee for Space Data Systems (CCSDS) standards and techniques of data encryption, is desirable as is familiarity with spacecraft command and telemetry dictionaries.
Crucially, ground segments tasks are all undertaken in an environment where the safety of ongoing satellite operations must be preserved, and system configuration is changed only after careful review and approval.
Application Review Date
The First Review Date for this job is: August 25, 2022
Assist or lead in software development or modification to integrate new missions into the mission operations ground segment.
Help to maintain and improve ground segment software in support of currently active missions, with a focus on further improving efficiency and automation.
Research, evaluate, recommend, and initiate upgrade paths for new ground segment software and systems capabilities
Author ground segment design notes, end-user documentation, and mission readiness test reports.
Assist in anomaly responses on existing missions as they arise
Oversee revision control of ground segment electronic resources.
Demonstrated experience with working within the software lifecycle in a multidisciplinary team environment.
Demonstrated use of a high-level, object-oriented language (e.g. C++ or Java) to implement a software application, either user-facing or back-end.
Proficiency with version control (preferably GIT)
Demonstrated ability to work on multiple projects as a key member of a small but tightly integrated team.
Must be able to qualify for access to export-controlled information.
Advanced degree in related area and / or equivalent experience / training.
At least 2+ years professional experience preferred.
Strong experience with TCP/IP networking from a software development perspective; also, familiarity with VPN and secure shell tunnels.
Experience working on satellite ground segments.
Experience introducing software automation to a technical project.
Experience working within a spacecraft mission operations environment.
Experience with encryption and authentication techniques in the space telecommand domain.
Salary & Benefits
This is an exempt, monthly paid position. Annual salary is commensurate with experience within the range of $101,300.00 - $157,000.00.
For information on the comprehensive benefits package offered by the University visit:
Please submit your cover letter and resume as a single attachment when applying. Please upload the document in the Resume section, then skip the (optional) Cover Letter upload section.
Conviction History Background
This is a designated position requiring fingerprinting and a background check due to the nature of the job responsibilities. Berkeley does hire people with conviction histories and reviews information received in the context of the job responsibilities. The University reserves the right to make employment contingent upon successful completion of the background check.
Equal Employment Opportunity
The University of California is an Equal Opportunity/Affirmative Action Employer. All qualified applicants will receive consideration for employment without regard to race, color, religion, sex, sexual orientation, gender identity, national origin, disability, or protected veteran status. For more information about your rights as an applicant see: