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Build Engineer (Crew Starship)



Texas, USA
Posted on Tuesday, December 6, 2022

SpaceX was founded under the belief that a future where humanity is out exploring the stars is fundamentally more exciting than one where we are not. Today SpaceX is actively developing the technologies to make this possible, with the ultimate goal of enabling human life on Mars.


After 50 years, humankind will once again return to the surface of the moon using SpaceX’s new vehicle, Crew Starship (also known as HLS or the Human Landing System) – this time for good. Starship will usher in the next era of manned spaceflight and exploration, ultimately allowing us to establish permanent communities on the Moon, Mars, and beyond.

As a Build Engineer on the Crew Starship team, you are responsible for developing build processes, tooling, and designs for manufacturability that will enable high rate manufacturing of spacecraft systems that are critical to the success and safety of future astronauts. Disciplines within this team include primary and secondary structures, mechanisms, and crew-interfacing hardware. Your design and build solutions will be driven by all future Crew Starship missions (lunar, Mars, etc.). This role involves heavy engagement with both the design teams and the build teams across the Crew Starship and Starship programs. The role demands close interaction with hardware, including participating in and driving the physical build and installation of components and integrated assemblies.

Build Engineers will be highly engaged in the fabrication, test, and integration of a wide range of mechanical systems, including designing tooling and processes to rapidly build the Crew Starship vehicles. Further along in the build, this role will be responsible for items such as integration operations sequencing, and working with technicians on installing flight-critical hardware on the vehicle. Build Engineers will be expected to sometimes act as de-facto supervisors and advisors to production technicians, welders, and other skilled labor partners.


  • Develop manufacturing processes, techniques, and tools to enable efficient and high rate manufacturing
  • Work with the design engineering team to drive simplicity into the vehicle mechanical systems at every level
  • Guide a team of technicians, welders, and fabricators in building high quality and functional mechanical hardware
  • Coordinate and execute development, qualification, and acceptance testing of systems and tooling needed to meet hardware deadlines
  • Create original CAD models and prints for flight and/or tooling components
  • Create and maintain build schedules
  • Participate in design reviews internally and with suppliers and customers
  • Partner with engineering & production teams to generate ideas, designs, and improvements for current and next-generation vehicles


  • Bachelor's degree in aerospace engineering, manufacturing engineering, materials engineering, mechanical engineering, or other engineering discipline
  • 1+ years of manufacturing design experience (internship and academic experience is applicable)


  • 2+ years of experience with GD&T concepts
  • Experience with structures, mechanisms, or interior design or manufacturing in aerospace or aviation industries
  • Experience with basic structures calculations, analysis, and design considerations
  • Familiarity with process development, facility and line layouts, error-proofing
  • Detailed knowledge of Siemens NX or similar CAD and PLM packages
  • Prior experience with developing, maintaining, and improving welding processes
  • Excellent communication skills (both written and verbal) and ability to succinctly present recommendations to other engineers, production teams, stakeholders, management, and executive staff
  • Experience at a nimble engineering organization or in a highly technical position that required a scrappy, entrepreneurial manner to accomplish tasks with tight time or budget constraints


  • Flight hardware typically is built in tight quarters and physical dexterity is required
  • Ability to perform job duties that require standing, kneeling, crouching, twisting upper body, working in cramped positions in small openings and climbing hand over hand
  • Typically exposed to work in extreme outdoor environments – heat, cold, rain
  • Work performed in an environment requiring exposure to fumes, odors, and noise
  • Schedule varies depending on site operational needs; flexibility required
  • Flexibility to travel to remote build sites in Texas and Florida for prolonged periods of time
  • Ability to pass Air Force background check for Cape Canaveral


Pay range:
Build Engineer/Level 1: $95,000.00 - $115,000.00/per year
Build Engineer/Level 2: $110,000.00 - $130,000.00/per year

Your actual level and base salary will be determined on a case-by-case basis and may vary based on the following considerations: job-related knowledge and skills, education, and experience.

Base salary is just one part of your total rewards package at SpaceX. You may also be eligible for long-term incentives, in the form of company stock, stock options, or long-term cash awards, as well as potential discretionary bonuses and the ability to purchase additional stock at a discount through an Employee Stock Purchase Plan. You will also receive access to comprehensive medical, vision, and dental coverage, access to a 401(k) retirement plan, short & long-term disability insurance, life insurance, paid parental leave, and various other discounts and perks. You may also accrue 3 weeks of paid vacation & will be eligible for 10 or more paid holidays per year.


  • To conform to U.S. Government export regulations, applicant must be a (i) U.S. citizen or national, (ii) U.S. lawful, permanent resident (aka green card holder), (iii) Refugee under 8 U.S.C. § 1157, or (iv) Asylee under 8 U.S.C. § 1158, or be eligible to obtain the required authorizations from the U.S. Department of State. Learn more about the ITAR here.

SpaceX is an Equal Opportunity Employer; employment with SpaceX is governed on the basis of merit, competence and qualifications and will not be influenced in any manner by race, color, religion, gender, national origin/ethnicity, veteran status, disability status, age, sexual orientation, gender identity, marital status, mental or physical disability or any other legally protected status.

Applicants wishing to view a copy of SpaceX’s Affirmative Action Plan for veterans and individuals with disabilities, or applicants requiring reasonable accommodation to the application/interview process should notify the Human Resources Department at (310) 363-6000.