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Thermal Engineer II

Relativity Space

Relativity Space

Long Beach, CA, USA
Posted on Friday, February 23, 2024

Company Overview:

At Relativity Space, we have two audacious goals: to build the next great commercial launch company with Terran R and to become America's leading force in additive manufacturing innovation. Both contribute to our long-term vision of creating humanity’s industrial base on Mars, paving the way for interplanetary life to expand the possibilities of the human experience. This journey begins right here on Earth – where we design, build, and fly rockets to deliver customer payloads to orbit. Terran R, our medium-to-heavy lift reusable rocket, fulfills the growing demand for launch capacity, thanks to our iterative approach that accelerates design, testing, and development while minimizing costs. While our groundbreaking research and development in 3D printing pushes the boundaries of large-scale additive manufacturing.

Your journey with us is more than just a job – it’s an opportunity to shape the future of aerospace technology, additive manufacturing, and the human experience alongside a community of passionate, creative individuals. Join us on this extraordinary journey, as we work together to transform our vision into reality.

About the Team:

Relativity’s Integrated Performance teams ensure that our products work across all systems and disciplines, from trajectory design to aerodynamics to reliability analysis and beyond. Our groups size the Terran R rocket, design its missions for customer success, reliability, and reusability, and ensure that every system on the rocket and ground is engineered correctly for the demanding environments of launch and entry. Recently, we completed the preliminary design and analysis of Terran R including Relativity’s first-ever work on launch vehicle reusability, spanning advanced trajectory simulations, wind tunnel testing, and structures analysis, among many other projects.

The Thermal team is responsible for predicting temperatures and designing thermal architectures for structures, fluids, components, and avionics on reusable launch vehicles. With a strong grasp of thermodynamics and all types of heat transfer, the team addresses a vast amount of thermal challenges across all forms of ground use and flight phases. Leveraging first principle hand calculations, reduced order modeling, as well as detailed thermal modeling, the team is able to drive cross disciplinary vehicle designs. Our collaboration with hardware engineers and all other teams further enables us to overcome design and integration hurdles, ensuring a seamless and efficient development process from concept and through launch.

About the Role:

As a Thermal Engineer, You will work collaboratively with the Stage Engineering, Additive, Propulsion, Avionics, and Test teams to deliver thermal analysis and test projects on time and budget, while meeting our technical requirements. A high degree of autonomy along with an ability to prioritize work in our fast-paced environment is required.

Here are some examples of projects you could be working on:

  • Drive the architecture, sizing, and development of thermal systems like insulation, heaters, thermal protection, and environmental conditioning in collaboration with peer technical teams
  • Build, execute, and validate thermal analyses at the component, sub-system, and vehicle level, including relevant tool development and automation
  • Direct design and development engineers in the successful application of thermal sciences to achieve system and component requirements
  • Develop and execute tests to support thermal systems development and qualification, including hands-on work like test article integration, instrumentation setup, and data processing
  • Support vehicle and engine thermal system development and stage testing, as well as flight operations

In order to be successful in this role, you should be self-motivated, adaptable and able to deliver in a fast-paced, integrated vehicle program. You should also be able to resolve ambiguity and drive tasks to completion. Ideally, you have thermal or fluids analysis experience as well as a proven track record completing projects successfully as part of a technical team. This position is ideal for engineers looking to make a direct impact on a variety of mission-critical systems and processes as a key member of a small team.

On a weekly basis, you will be performing analysis, directing design teams, supporting testing, and processing data. You will also use your strong organizational skills to properly manage the documentation and communication of your actions, recommendations, and decisions.

About You:

  • An undergraduate degree in engineering or related field
  • 3+ years experience in thermal analysis
  • Proficiency in component and system level thermal and fluids analysis, using relevant toolsets like Sinda/Fluint / Thermal Desktop and other commercial FEM/FDM/FVM solvers
  • Experience in an analysis role on an integrated vehicle program
  • Hands-on experience with writing test plans and performing testing, instrumentation, and data analysis at the component and system level
  • Experience solving complex problems on integrated vehicles with design teams
  • Experience with an engineering scripting language like MATLAB or Python

Nice to Haves, but Not Required:

  • A graduate degree (MS/PhD) in engineering or related field and 10+ years relevant experience
  • Familiarity with liquid rocket engine architectures and operations
  • Understanding of aerodynamics
  • Experience with launch vehicle thermal protection system materials and thermal protection system sizing
  • Experience with start to finish design cycles of multiple vehicles

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:
$110,000$140,000 USD