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Test Engineer Intern - Build & Operations - Fall 2023

Relativity Space

Relativity Space

Operations, Quality Assurance
John C. Stennis Space Center, MS, USA
Posted on Tuesday, April 18, 2023

Company Overview:

We invented a new approach to design, build, and fly our own rockets, starting with Terran 1 – the world’s first entirely 3D printed rocket and Terran R our reusable next generation 3D printed rocket.Using our vertically integrated technology platform, leveraging additive manufacturing, artificial intelligence, and autonomous robotics to deliver superiority over traditional aerospace manufacturing methods, we’re disrupting 60 years of aerospace with our novelty approach to get to space, Mars, and beyond faster, more cost-effective, and more reliable.


The Stennis team at Relativity Space is responsible for designing, building, and operating world-class test stands to support the Terran 1 and Terran R stages, engines, and propulsion components. As part of this team, you will help build and operate massive outdoor test stands at the historic Stennis Space Center on the Gulf Coast, the largest rocket engine test complex in the country. Unique to this location, you will have the opportunity to get hands-on the fully integrated engine and stage assemblies, push the hardware to the limits, and witness rocket engines firing up close and personal! This team is critical to the launch success of Terran 1, continued development of Terran R, among many other firsts! Check out this video to learn more about the Stennis test team:

What you’ll do:

As a Test Engineering Intern, you will be responsible for designing and operating rocket engine test stands for our Terran 1 and Terran R engines and stages. Interns at our Stennis facility work in partnership with experienced operations and ground systems engineers and technicians to build and modify test facilities, as well as participate in test campaigns to flight qualify our hardware. You will be directly engaged in daily test operations, maintenance, construction, and commissioning activities in the field. The internship may include aspects of both designing ground systems [Design focus] and conducting test operations [Operations focus].

[Design focus]

  • Design advanced propulsion test stands including 3D modeling, fluids, structural, and thermal analysis, fabrication drawings, fluids P&IDs, component lists, and detailed work instructions
  • Supervise the construction, commissioning, and initial operations of these facilities
  • Solve a variety of technical problems, across broad ranges of timeframe, complexity, cost, and long-term impact
  • Support operations on and perform related improvements to existing test stands

[Operations focus]

  • Create, modify, and optimize test sequences, procedures, and data review processes
  • Conduct complex propulsion test operations to assess performance of rocket engines and stages
  • Directly control and receive telemetry from the test stand and test articles through GUIs and an integrated software suite for control, automation, and data visualization
  • Help develop new rocket engine propulsion designs based on real test data
  • Potentially travel to production and launch locations, up to 25%

Past intern projects (just a few examples!)

  • Rebuilt complex hydraulic system for high-speed, high-pressure valve actuators
  • Wrote complex vehicle automation that was used for Terran1 stage test & launch
  • Bulk LNG (Liquid Natural Gas) Storage system design, build, and commissioning
  • Designed, built, and helped install removable flooring for engine testing
  • Designed Stage 1 engine GUIs for 9x Aeon1 engines used during stage test & launch
  • Designed run tank mounts, entered & cleaned tanks, helped install onto test stand

Skills/Competencies we're looking for:

  • Current undergraduate or graduate student earning a degree in mechanical engineering, aerospace engineering, or a related field
    • Prior experience in aerospace is not required
    • Varied perspectives & backgrounds strengthen our team
  • Strong engineering fundamentals in thermal, structural, and fluids analysis
  • Demonstrated drive to deliver on tight schedules, especially when unconventional & creative solutions are necessary
  • Hands-on fabrication experience using common power tools for projects at work/home/school
  • Ability to work occasional night shifts

Relativity Space offers competitive salary and equity, a generous vacation policy, an annual L&D stipend and more!

We are an equal opportunity employer and value diversity at our company. We do not discriminate on the basis of race, religion, color, national origin, gender, sexual orientation, age, marital status, veteran status, or disability status.

The below-range represents Relativity Space’s current good-faith pay scale for this role. Relativity Space reserves the right to modify or update this range at any time.

Compensation is only one part of our entire total rewards package. To see some of the benefits & perks we offer, please visit here:
Hiring Range:
$28$36 USD