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Launch Engineer, Spacecraft Integration (Vandenberg)



Vandenberg Village, CA, USA
Posted on Thursday, May 25, 2023

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.



  • Provide engineering support to the following efforts: Starlink satellite processing, customer, government, and rideshare payload integration
  • Provide on-the-floor engineering support through running avionics and pressurized checkouts and swiftly solving any hardware/avionics issues as they arise
  • Improve integration process efficiency through automation of pre-launch checkouts and test procedures
  • Develop and execute procedures for the checkout and integration of Starlink satellites, commercial/government spacecraft, fairings, and ground support equipment
  • Work closely with payload avionics/structures design teams to develop integration plans for a growing number of unique, non-standard payload missions
  • Constantly evaluate and iterate on the hardware integration processes to increase processing cadence, while maintaining reliability
  • Manage hardware processing and delivery timelines closely with government and commercial customers to ensure pre-launch milestones are met
  • Closely collaborate with engineering staff from other departments and highly skilled technicians on a daily basis
  • Manage and track multiple priorities while maintaining a focus towards common project goals
  • Manage work orders and the driving of non-conformances into actionable items and system improvements
  • Lead and facilitate root cause and corrective action investigations to ensure that issues related to product reliability and quality that cause downstream disruption are corrected


  • Bachelor's degree in mechanical engineering or aerospace engineering
  • 2+ years of professional experience with complex, multi-disciplinary system assemblies (past work experience, internships, team/personal projects with aerospace vehicles/payloads, automotive, aircraft, marine assemblies qualify)


  • Professional experience with one or more of the following: launch vehicle or spacecraft integration; hardware integration and a history of troubleshooting skills; operations in 100,000 class or better clean rooms; test operations with gases/fluids; data acquisition setup and field measurements
  • Experience in writing test plans and test procedures
  • Experience in writing build instructions or work instructions for execution by skilled technicians
  • Experience interacting with CAD software and large CAD models
  • Problem solving skills and experience with respect to hardware or avionics
  • Ability to obtain and maintain a security clearance
  • Ability to work well in a team environment with a wide range of people across multiple organizations, including mission management, customers, and vendors
  • Professional experience testing and operating with or around hazardous systems (high pressure, high energy, lifting operations, hazardous gases/fluids, etc.)
  • Ability to learn, lead others, and help others learn while maintaining productivity


  • Ability to pass Air Force background check for Vandenberg
  • Ability to work at elevated heights and/or tight spaces
  • Must be willing to travel, potentially for extended periods of time
  • Physical effort including standing, lifting and carrying moderately heavy materials or equipment (15 to 35 lbs)
  • Ability to obtain and maintain an active TS/SCI clearance


Pay range:
Launch Engineer/Level I: $95,000.00 - $115,000.00/per year
Launch Engineer/Level II: $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 and long-term disability insurance, life insurance, paid parental leave, and various other discounts and perks. You may also accrue 3 weeks of paid vacation and will be eligible for 10 or more paid holidays per year. Exempt employees are eligible for 5 days of sick leave 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.