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Launch Engineer, Ground Support Equipment (Falcon)



Customer Service
Vandenberg Village, CA, USA
Posted on Saturday, June 1, 2024

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.


SpaceX is currently seeking talented individuals for a ground system engineering position on the Falcon Integration team in Vandenberg. You will have the opportunity to utilize your knowledge, experience, and creativity to rapidly design, build, and activate fluid and mechanical systems required to support all aspects of SpaceX Falcon 9 vehicle processing, spacecraft integration, and umbilical refurb.


  • Design, build, and activate equipment to support all aspects of launch site vehicle processing and launch, including structural, tooling/fixtures, fluids, and transport equipment
  • This team supports Stage 1, Stage 2, Fairing, launch site payload operations, from Dockside to Launch, with a focus on vehicle interface tooling for structural and fluid connections
  • This team also supports every flight inspection, refurbishment operations for all the umbilical’s for pad operations
  • Use hand calculations, finite element analyses (FEA), and computer-aided designs (CAD) to ensure all hardware meets or exceeds internal and customer requirements
  • Lead design reviews and activation testing
  • Serve as a technical interface to customers and suppliers
  • Monitor and participate in ground system build and test, hands-on in the field, alongside skilled technician teams
  • Collaborate with engineers and technicians when performing critical operations on non-flight hardware including mechanical, hydraulic, and pneumatic systems
  • Perform continuing engineering and production support of ground support equipment to support a 99%+ uptime to support flight hardware integration activities


  • Bachelor’s degree in an engineering discipline
  • 1+ years of hands-on hardware experience performing fabrication, assembly and/or testing


  • Experience with NX/Teamcenter designing parts and assemblies
  • Experience with CAD and FEA software packages (can be in a professional, academic, entrepreneurial, or hobby setting)
  • Experience with at least one commercial FEA or multiphysics simulation package (NASTRAN, ABAQUS, ANSYS, CFD codes, etc.)
  • Demonstrated ability to own hardware or systems within an integrated engineering team outside a classroom setting (FSAE, Engineers without Borders, Design-Build-Fly, NASA student launch, personal entrepreneurial ventures, etc.)
  • Analytical/scientific programming experience (Python, MATLAB, Excel, etc.)
  • Hands-on experience working with complex fluid or mechanical systems in a professional setting
  • Demonstrated expertise in the design, build, and operation of systems per any of the following:
    • Fluids -ASME B31.3, ASME B&PV Code Section VIII
    • Mechanical: AFSPCMAN 91-710, ASME B30, ASME BTH-1, NASA-STD-5005
  • Excellent written and oral communication, especially translating technical concepts for non-technical audiences
  • General hands-on mechanical experience: welding, automotive, robotics, rocketry, etc.
  • Ability to work in a fast-paced, autonomously driven, and demanding atmosphere
  • Unfazed by change in strategic direction


  • Ability to pass Air Force background check for Cape Canaveral
  • Physical effort including standing, lifting and carrying moderately heavy materials or equipment (15 to 30 lbs.)
  • Overall mental fitness with the ability to work in a high-concentration, high-stress environment requiring prolonged mental concentration (under possible extended work hours)
  • Ability to be flexible on shifts
  • Occasional travel may be required

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 & 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. 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.