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Sierra Nevada Corporation | SNC Sierra Nevada Corporation | SNC

Mechanical Engineer II (Propulsion Test Engineer)

  •  Posted 30+ Days Ago
  •   Full time
  •  Madison, WI
  •  R0006622

The Propulsion Engineer drives the development of propulsion related hardware through some or all stages of the product development process: concept development, preliminary design, drawing generation and release, parts procurement, inspection, assembly, integration, test, and analysis of results. This individual must have a good working knowledge of thermodynamics, heat transfer, fluid system design and analysis, and CAD. The ideal candidate will have exposure to design, analysis, test, and evaluation of propulsion subsystems. Direct experience in the field of liquid rocket engines and hybrid rocket motors is highly desirable, as is a working knowledge of propulsion principles and design/analysis methodology.


  • Assist in design, analysis, development, and testing of spaceflight propulsion hardware.
  • Work as part of a collaborative, quick-moving product team to bring propulsion concepts through development and into flight service.
  • Specify, design, and implement systems to support propulsion ground testing.
  • Understand, plan, and execute technical activities in accordance with SNC policies, procedures, and work instructions and specific customer requirements.
  • Generate technical drawings, schematics, procedures, work instructions, reports, test plans, and other documentation in support of design and development activities.
  • Work with other engineers to review the results of testing, resolve system issues, and improve on evolving designs as needed.
  • Prepare materials for, and conduct, periodic design reviews.
  • Ensure conformance of products with engineering design and performance specifications.
  • Execute engineering design and development activities consistent with customer quality, cost, and schedule requirements.
  • Conduct tests to evaluate the feasibility, design, operation, and performance of equipment, components and systems.
  • Design, specify, operate, troubleshoot, and maintain low voltage data acquisition and control system hardware and software.
  • Specify, design, integrate, operate, and troubleshoot unique measurement instruments and special test equipment.


  • Punctuality to work each day and ability to generally work scheduled hours.
  • Other duties as assigned.


  • Responsible for thoughtful adherence to all SNC policies, procedures, and compliance regulations (internal and external).
  • Responsible for timely execution of all personnel-related activities such as time sheet completion, performance evaluations, salary reviews, succession planning, etc.
  • Responsible for participating in department/team training as required.


  • Ability to travel occasionally required.
  • Minimum physical requirements to perform all duties and responsibilities required, as defined by management.
  • SNC job descriptions are meant only as a summary. They do not necessarily reflect all duties and responsibilities of a position.


  • BS in Related Field is required; MS would be a plus.
  • 3+ years experience
  • Experience in the aerospace industry, or closely related industry, is desirable.
  • Experience in SolidWorks or other related CAD system(s) is required.
  • Experience in Matlab, FORTRAN, or other related numerical manipulation tool(s) is required.
  • Strong written and verbal communication skills are required.
  • Ability to rapidly engage, with minimal supervision, on projects involving both small and large engineering teams is required
  • Experience in electronics test rack design and build, data acquisition setup and field measurements, buildup of electronics systems or test systems for local assembly or industrial applications. (Examples fields are: robotics, automotive, aircraft, marine, autonomous vehicles, RF or communication systems, power plant or chemical process type industrial systems) is desirable.
  • Experience conducting large scale and high channel count field or flight tests with accelerometers, pressure transducers, strain gauges, thermocouples, and RTDs is desirable.
  • Experience with motor controllers, VFDs, servo drives, and process controllers is a plus.
  • Experience designing and operating critical/hazardous systems is highly desirable.
  • Proficiency in at least one core programming language (e.g. C# preferred, C/C++, Visual Basic, Java, Python) is a plus.
  • Some previous experience / skills in project definition, part design, lab integration and/or test is required.
  • Must be able to work in a highly collaborative, fast paced environment with emphasis on rapid prototyping, testing, and fielding of capabilities.
  • Experience with design/testing/analysis of rocket engines and related systems is highly desirable. 


To conform to U.S. Government export 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.