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Mechanical Engineering Intern [Fall 2024]

Zipline

Zipline

Other Engineering
South San Francisco, CA, USA
Posted on Saturday, May 4, 2024

About Zipline

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 the first instant logistics system that serves all humans equally. Leveraging expertise in robotics and autonomy, Zipline designs, builds, and operates a fleet of cutting edge, autonomous delivery drones. We serve tens of millions of people around the world.

Joining Zipline’s Emerging Talent program as an intern is an opportunity to contribute to our promise of building a system that provides equitable access to critical healthcare supplies for millions of people. We believe that internships are more than just opportunities to learn by watching or doing low level tasks. We expect our interns to take on meaningful work that actively contributes to moving Zipline’s mission forward, while learning real-world skills that will serve them in their careers for the long term.

Join us, and build the future of logistics with the best humans around!

About you and the Role

Does aggressively tackling cross disciplinary projects from early conceptual stages through to full field deployment sound like the way you want to spend your time? Do you eliminate circular discussions by running a test or use your hands-on skills to build a prototype instead of scheduling another meeting? At Zipline, your work is intended for the field, where customers are counting on it every day, so there is no time for ambiguous communication or unrealistic expectations. We need dedicated engineers to burn down risk and improve reliability in our system like their life depends on it, because others' lives do. If you thrive working with a fast-paced and driven team that focuses on only the most important goals, eliminates blockers, and executes with extreme practicality, keep reading!

Mechanical Engineers at Zipline go deep in their area of ownership, become experts in the problem domain, define requirements for their systems, rapidly develop creative and simple solutions, and prove with testing that their system meets the rigors and edge-cases of real-world deployment. We are composed of teams that are responsible for everything from the earliest designs of a new system, to creating test and validation strategies, root-causing issues with existing systems, and much more.

What You'll Do

Mechanical interns can own a variety of big problems integral to our system! You can expect to:

  • Take product and engineering requirements to develop concepts and evaluate tradeoffs for each
  • Use 2D and 3D CAD tools to design parts and assemblies based on sound engineering principles
  • Use resources creatively to design, build, and test prototypes to gather quick learnings
  • Work cross-functionally with other Zipline teams and suppliers to review designs
  • Design, build, and run electro-mechanical testers that you develop to prove reliability of critical components
  • Root cause failures and develop a test to replicate the failure mode
  • Document your work so that others can easily understand key decisions made

Examples of previous intern projects included:

  • Designing, building, testing, and running:
    • a flexible blind-mate ducting connection between an aircraft and a ground-based cooling station, allowing for aircraft battery temperature regulation during charging and pre-flight preparation
    • a service strategy for removing a docked aircraft from a ground station using a custom designed hand cart, complete with an ergonomic study for a range of technician heights and strengths
    • a communications tower with integrated antennas and lightning protection meant to relay vital telemetry information from the drone to the operators during flight
    • a wing cycle tester to identify and eliminate risk for each wing iteration and prove reliability with cycles

What You'll Bring

The most critical skill we’ve seen in prior entry-level candidates is robust experience designing and actually building multiple mechanical systems outside of the classroom. This is the component of your application we’re most excited about, so please ensure that you’ve included this work in your application. Examples of things previous interns have built include submarines, solar cars in the Australian outback, electric boats and airplanes, rockets, etc.

  • You must have completed at least the second year of your Undergraduate studies. Masters and PhD students are also eligible.
  • You’ll bring solid mechanical engineering fundamentals for sizing parts and integrating into design with minimal help
  • You’ll bring automation experience from working with actuators and Raspberry Pi’s (or similar)
  • You’re well versed in CAD, and have designed multiple projects with it
  • You’ve worked on complex projects that require mechanical, electrical, and software design
  • You're quick to change direction when you realize you’ve made a mistake OR could achieve the same goal in a simpler way
  • You bias to action and communicate consistently with your team to ensure everyone is focused on meeting the project goals on time
  • You're excited to build on your design skills with brainstorms, design reviews, and failure mode analysis
  • You can anticipate, plan and schedule your own work
  • You bring a “can do” attitude, because we have a lot of vital work to get done and only work with people who are invested in solving critical problems

What Else You Need to Know

Our internships are full-time positions, in-person at our South San Francisco office. We will host our Fall 2024 interns from September to December.

The starting cash range for this role is $36 - 40 / hour. 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, and working location. The total compensation package for this role may also include: overtime pay; commuter benefits; paid sick time; and more.

Zipline is an equal opportunity employer and prohibits discrimination and harassment of any type without regard to race, color, religion, age, sex, national origin, disability status, genetics, protected veteran status, sexual orientation, gender identity or expression, or any other characteristic protected by federal, state or local laws or our own sensibilities.

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!

Zipline is also committed to providing reasonable accommodations to individuals with disabilities. Please let your point of contact at Zipline know if you require any accommodations throughout your interview process.