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Spacecraft Guidance, Navigation, and Controls (GNC) Engineer

Develop multi-modality state estimation filters for relative navigation and orbit determination.
Reston, Virginia, United States
1 month ago


SpaceCraft Observing and Understanding Things

Job is no longer active
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✨ About The Role

Scout is building a new way to see and operate in space: with a new paradigm of data empowering every satellite to make space safer. We are a rapidly-growing team; we are deploying real solutions to orbit; and our work will transform the face of spaceflight. We are looking for people that bring excitement and energy to our organization, are curious and eager to learn, and want to help drive our programs forward.

As a Spacecraft Guidance, Navigation, and Controls (GNC) Engineer, you will play a crucial role in developing novel orbit estimation and analysis tools to push the state-of-the-art in Space Domain Awareness (SDA); designing and implementing simulation & analysis, ground-support, and/or payload flight software to further Scout’s programs and missions; assisting in optimizing designs of observer networks and developing coordinated operations scheduling tools which maximize the effectiveness of the network; and investigating new ways to aggregate and exploit available and next-generation SDA data. In this role, you will contribute directly to Scout’s flight projects, ground data management and exploitation efforts, and next-generation Resident Space Object (RSO) detection capabilities.


  • Develop and maintain software in Python (required) and C/C++ (strongly preferred)
  • Utilize current software tools to perform analyses related to constellation design, target RSO observability and tracking, and space mission design Concept-of-Operations (CONOPs)
  • Collaborate with other team members to develop improved or novel SDA capabilities
  • Assist with system-level integration of GNC subsystem into ConOps and mission planning
  • Interface with CV/AI and systems engineering team to manage I/O from control systems for ephemera, flags, and relevant data for phenomenological analytics or decision-making
  • Develop multi-modality state estimation filters for relative navigation and orbit determination
  • Support on mission planning and ConOps development for operations such as RPO, inspection, and dynamic resident space object detection, cataloging, and characterization
  • Management of ADCS/GNC datasets and ephemera, integration of space system sensing modalities into mission operations
  • Support on R&D proposals and documents e.g. ICDs, for both internal and external purposes, to realize SCOUT’s evolving vision for space-based situational awareness

Required Qualifications:

  • 5+ years of experience (M.S. counts for two years, PhD for 3+ depending on relevance) focused on autonomous systems, orbit estimation, machine learning, and/or SDA
  • Ability to work effectively within a loosely-structured, dynamic, fast-paced start-up environment
  • Experience developing and designing validation/verification tools for high-fidelity astrodynamics/GNC simulation and analysis software (both for ground-support and flight systems)
  • M.S. or PhD in Aerospace/Astronautical Engineering, Electrical Engineering, Software Engineering, or related discipline preferred

Preferred Skills/Qualifications:

  • Flight program experience strongly preferred
  • Practical knowledge of cislunar orbit modeling techniques
  • Spacecraft flight software development experience
  • Cradle-to-grave spacecraft flight mission experience
  • Low thrust orbit transfer design (preferably for flight mission)
  • Experience in spacecraft vehicle modeling (e.g. power, data/downlink, and momentum management systems simulated over spacecraft day-in-the-life)
  • Experience deriving equations of motion and/or control systems for complex spacecraft with multiple rotating components
  • Orbit/Attitude estimation using advanced filtering techniques with optical, radar, or resolved computer vision systems
  • Design of coordinated operations scheduling tools to improve/optimize the efficiency of many-agent system (e.g. spacecraft constellation)

Don't fulfill all the qualifications listed above? If you still feel like you might be a good fit, please feel free to APPLY ANYWAY. We believe in a well-rounded team, and this sometimes means that someone with out-of-context knowledge can contribute just as well as someone with very explicit alignment with our capabilities needs stated.

Our positions are based in the Reston, Virginia area, with much of our team operating in a hybrid or remote fashion. Our preference is for candidates in or around this area (or willing to relocate) as we scale our facilities and engineering team and provide more opportunities to work and collaborate in-person. Remote employees will be required to travel for onsite work and in-person meetings.

Scout Inc. does not discriminate in employment on the basis of race, color, religion, sex (including pregnancy and gender identity), national origin, political affiliation, sexual orientation, marital status, disability, genetic information, age, membership in an employee organization, retaliation, parental status, military service, or other non-merit factor. To conform to US Government space technology export regulations, applicants must be a US citizen, lawful permanent resident of the US, a protected individual as defined by 8 USC 1324b(a)(3), or eligible to obtain the required authorization from the US Department of State.

#hybrid #remote

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Spacecraft Guidance, Navigation, and Controls (GNC) Engineer
Reston, Virginia, United States
Job is no longer active
About Scout
SpaceCraft Observing and Understanding Things