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Guidance, Navigation, & Controls (GNC) Engineer

In Orbit Aerospace

In Orbit Aerospace

Los Angeles, CA, USA
Posted on Monday, August 22, 2022

In Orbit was founded to enable large-scale orbital research and manufacturing. Today, we are developing the next-generation of spacecraft for on-orbit operations and the return of cargo from space back down to Earth. To accomplish this, we are looking for an engineer eager to join a fast-paced team developing space services for a new orbital economy.

As a GNC engineer at In Orbit, your work will be critical to lead our team to success. You will be responsible for the design, test, and validation of the guidance, navigation, and controls subsystem as well as supporting decisions to improve the on-orbit operations of complex spacecraft.


  • Plan, develop, review, and maintain GNC and RPO subsystem requirements, provide recommendations for changes, and develop the appropriate verification methods
  • Design, analyze, and tune sequential filters (e.g. Kalman filters) for attitude determination and relative navigation
  • Design, analyze, and tune spacecraft attitude and position control loops using time and frequency domain techniques
  • Design, develop, test, and verify flight algorithms for the GNC subsystem
  • Support flight software qualification testing
  • Develop and test 6-DOF GNC simulations using Python
  • Perform analysis to support early design phase concept development including actuator sizing and placement, sensor selection and placement, attitude and position guidance, rendezvous, proximity operations and docking analyses, and predicted performance assessments
  • Develop simulation models for sensors (e.g. star tracker, rate gyro, accelerometer, GPS, magnetometer, sun sensors), actuators (e.g. reaction wheels, torque rods, thrusters, CMGs), system dynamics (e.g. rigid body, multi-body, orbit mechanics, flexible models, propellant slosh), and the space environment (e.g. atmospheric, solar radiation pressure, third-body gravity, geopotential)

Basic Qualifications:

  • BS degree in engineering (Aerospace, Physics, Electrical, Computer Science)
  • Experience with orbital mechanics and GNC principles
  • Knowledge in the development of GNC algorithms and analyzing system performance for spacecraft
  • Experience developing, verifying, and validating simulation models
  • Experience with the development of space systems requirements and documents
  • Strong interpersonal skills to enable successful performance in a collaborative engineering environment
  • Ability to organize and prioritize tasks in order to meet deadlines and schedules with limited supervision
  • Ability to prepare written documents and to verbally present at various meetings

Preferred Experience and Skills:

  • Advanced degree in a relevant field with a focus on GNC, flight controls, orbital mechanics
  • 2+ years of experience working with space systems
  • Experience with spacecraft Rendezvous and Proximity Operations (RPO)
  • Familiarity with spacecraft docking systems
  • Experience with spacecraft flight operations and procedures
  • Experience with the design, verification, testing, and operation of GNC hardware/software
  • Familiarity with the Atlassian suite (Confluence, JIRA, Bitbucket)
  • Experience with LINUX, Python, C++
  • Experience with the Basilisk, GMAT, STK, FreeFlyer, ODTK, Orekit, or other simulation tools
  • Experience with the NASA core Flight System (cFS) architecture
  • Experience with Git version control
  • Able to independently identify and resolve complex problems
  • Able to work in a fast paced and demanding environment

ITAR Requirements:

To conform to U.S. Government space technology export regulations, including the International Traffic in Arms Regulations (ITAR) you 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.