Senior Ground Mechanical Engineer

El Segundo, California
Engineering – Hardware Engineering /
Full-time /
ABL Space Systems was founded in 2017 by veterans of SpaceX and Morgan Stanley to develop low-cost launch vehicles for the small satellite industry. More importantly, we’re building a launch system we are truly proud of – no gimmicks or over-design, just reliable, rapidly deployable launches. We’re an ambitious team with big goals and, together, we’re determined to prove that reaching space can be simple, efficient, and routine.  

When launch day arrives, we want you by our side

As a Senior Ground Mechanical Systems Engineer, within the structures team, you will lead the development, design, build, and commissioning of ground mechanical systems at ABL to support the operations and launch of RS1.  You will have the opportunity to be a key member of a small team of mechanical, fluid, and electrical engineers working to develop innovative deployable launch solutions that enable the rapid deployment and launch of RS1, and future launch solutions.  This is a role that contributes to every mission and every flight we fly as we continue to reimagine the future of space launches.


    • Take full ownership for designing ground mechanical systems, which are critical in launch operations from clean sheet design, through commissioning.
    • Responsible for all aspects of assigned mechanical project/product lifecycle: gathering and generating requirements, conceptual design, material and vendor selection, analysis (hand calculations and FEA), CAD/drawing generation, manufacturing, testing, and system commissioning
    • Develop sizing loads for ground mechanical systems, and complete analysis to show structural capability against ABL, Test Site and Range requirements
    • Develop hydraulic and pneumatic systems to support mechanical ground operations that comply with ABL, Test Site and Range requirements. Work with fluids and electrical engineers to ensure clean cross functional design
    • Develop test plans for ground mechanical systems, and lead qualification/ATP testing to verify capability against design requirements. Inclusive of planning, analysis, documentation, and execution of test campaigns
    • Create and present internal technical documentation that clearly conveys design intent, structural capability, and adherence to standards, requirements, and specifications
    • Prepare and effectively deliver technical regulatory documentation to support launch site deployments, system level checkout operations, and flight license approval
    • Lead the development of internal standard manufacturing/integration processes (welding, fabrication, inspection, etc.) that comply with ABL, Test Site and Range requirements and deliver quality ground mechanical systems
    • Manage the project’s schedule, compliance with internal and external requirements, budget, milestones, and track status
    • Mentor other engineers and technicians on the team
    • Interface with technicians to coordinate builds, logistics, support, and requirements
    • Ability to travel 25-30%


    • Bachelor’s Degree in Mechanical, Aerospace, Civil or similar field.
    • Minimum 5 years of experience working in space, aerospace, or equivalent professional environments with direct hands-on experience developing complex mechanical systems
    • Experience in structural design, detailed analysis, build and integration of large, welded structures compliant to AWS D1.1 or equivalent
    • Knowledge of mechanical system design, including components, such as valves, regulators, hydraulic actuators, pressure transducers
    • Experience developing and reviewing complex fluid P&IDs
    • Experience working across engineering groups to define requirements and implement solutions
    • Experience with NX or other CAD system


    • M.S. from an accredited university in engineering or science
    • Experience working with high-pressure systems
    • Ability to size fluid components based on flow, pressure, and thermal requirements
    • Experience with Teamcenter or other PLM system
    • Solid understanding of industry standards such as: AFSPCMAN 91-710, NASA-STD-5005
    • Experience working with cryogenic fluid systems
    • Experience routing fluid and electrical systems in complex assemblies


    • Critical thinking: ABL engineers understand the “why” behind all design decisions, operational events and test outcomes
    • Ability to deal with ambiguity: ABL engineers must be comfortable defining their own pathway to an objective
    • End-to-end ownership


    • Ability to sit or stand for extended periods of time
    • Ability to use a computer to complete assignments
    • Ability to communicate with individuals and groups in person, by phone and telepresence
    • While performing the duties of this job, the employee will typically work in an office environment
    • Must be able to stoop, bend, crawl, and able to maneuver in tight spaces
    • Physically able to handle items weighing up to 25lbs (unassisted)
$145,000 - $210,000 a year
The salary range for this role is $145,000-$210,000. This is the lowest to highest salary we reasonably and in good faith believe we would pay for this role at the time of this posting. We may ultimately pay more or less than the posted range, and the range may be modified in the future. An employee’s pay position within the salary range will be based on several factors including, but not limited to, relevant education, qualifications, certifications, experience, skills, geographic location, performance, and business or organizational needs.

We offer a comprehensive package of benefits including paid time off, medical/dental/vision insurance, and 401(k) to eligible employees.


ITAR Requirement
This position requires access to information protected under US export control laws, including the International Traffic in Arms Regulations and/or the Export Administration Regulations.  As such, US person status (including US citizens, permanent residents, asylees, and refugees) is a required qualification for this position.

Equal Opportunity Employer
We are an equal opportunity employer. All qualified applicants will receive consideration for employment without regard to race, color, religion, sex (including pregnancy), sexual orientation, gender identity and/or expression, national origin, protected veteran status, disability, genetics, or citizenship status (when otherwise legally authorized to work and access export-controlled data) and will not be discriminated against on the basis of such characteristics or any other status protected by the laws or regulations in the locations where we operate. We encourage applicants of all ages.