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Senior GNC Engineer

Zipline

Zipline

Other Engineering
South San Francisco, CA, USA
Posted on Thursday, August 24, 2023

About Zipline

Do you want to change the world? Zipline is on a mission to transform the way goods move. Our aim is to solve the world’s most urgent and complex access challenges by building, manufacturing and operating the first instant delivery and logistics system that serves all humans equally, wherever they are. From powering Rwanda’s national blood delivery network and Ghana’s COVID-19 vaccine distribution, to providing on-demand home delivery for Walmart, to enabling healthcare providers to bring care directly to U.S. homes, we are transforming the way things move for businesses, governments and consumers.
The technology is complex but the idea is simple: a teleportation service that delivers what you need, when you need it. Through our technology that includes robotics and autonomy, we are decarbonizing delivery, decreasing road congestion, and reducing fossil fuel consumption and air pollution, while providing equitable access to billions of people and building a more resilient global supply chain.
Join Zipline and help us to make good on our promise to build an equitable and more resilient global supply chain for billions of people.

About You and The Role

Zipline’s GNC team is at the heart of our product’s success. Our team is responsible for developing, testing and maintaining critical flight software systems that enable our aircraft to complete missions autonomously. We thrive on developing novel solutions to ensure our delivery platforms can function in a wide range of increasingly challenging conditions, ensuring that we serve everyone in the world equally.

In this role you’ll use a range of analysis techniques to understand our system performance and how it is affected by design choices, limitations and requirements. You’ll work with the wider team to use data from flight testing, simulations, and our global fleet of customer aircraft to find the insights that will improve our products. By staying close to our customers, you’ll learn what really works and where we should be spending our time to drive our next phase of growth. Success in this role leads directly to improved operational capability of our logistics network.

What You'll Do

  • Analyze and improve the performance of existing and future vehicle designs through a combination of simulation and flight tests. In this role, you will be designing and implementing innovative flight algorithms that improve the operational performance of our vehicles
  • Develop dynamics models of complex systems and components that are core to our high fidelity simulation, while also supporting hardware design
  • Play a key role in deriving and verifying requirements for both hardware components and software interfaces, while balancing the technical need of the controller and broader product prerequisites as well as safety and regulatory standards
  • Design and implement onboard integrity tests to monitor how well the aircraft is flying and aid in understanding off-nominal performance and flight failures, both in research and validation flights, as well as in the production fleet.
  • Create and maintain tools and tests to streamline analysis, demonstrate vehicle performance and protect against software regressions, using theoretical guarantees, simulations and flight tests where appropriate.

What You'll Bring

  • Professional experience in one or more of the following areas: flight dynamics and control, dynamic modeling of complex systems, linear control analysis, optimal control with uncertainty, state estimation in novel circumstances. Ideally you will have used your skills in these areas to ship one or more complex products
  • Applied math skills that stand out even among aerospace engineers, particularly in linear algebra, probability and Bayesian estimation
  • Demonstrate enthusiasm and proficiency in both simulation practices and hands-on work with hardware, spanning from bench-level experimentation to comprehensive flight tests
  • Software skills, preferably with both technical computing (MATLAB, Python, Julia, etc) and embedded software (C, C++), and working in a multi-developer environment with version control systems (Git, SVN)

What Else You Need to Know

The starting cash range for this role is $170,000 - $210,000. Please note that this is a target, starting cash range for a candidate who meets the minimum qualifications for this role. The final cash pay for this role will depend on a variety of factors, including a specific candidate's experience, qualifications, skills, working location, and projected impact. The total compensation package for this role may also include: equity compensation; discretionary annual or performance bonuses; sales incentives; benefits such as medical, dental and vision insurance; paid time off; and more.
Zipline is an equal opportunity employer and prohibits discrimination and harassment of any type without regard to race, color, ancestry, national origin, religion or religious creed, mental or physical disability, medical condition, genetic information, sex (including pregnancy, childbirth, and related medical conditions), sexual orientation, gender identity, gender expression, age, marital status, military or veteran status, citizenship, or other characteristics protected by state, federal or local law or our other policies.
We value diversity at Zipline and welcome applications from those who are traditionally underrepresented in tech. If you like the sound of this position but are not sure if you are the perfect fit, please apply!