Head of Ground Systems Engineering

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

GS0 is our launch system that can be produced and validated in factory environments before being shipped and deployed to any launch site in the world. It's modular and adaptable, needing only a flat concrete pad and a small team to activate the new facility. As a Head of GS0, you and your team will take ownership of the hardware implementation of all the fluid systems and their enclosures in this system. You will coordinate with the structures and electrical systems teams to produce streamlined, cross-functional designs that are simple to maintain, improve, and deploy. This is a fast-paced, ever-evolving work environment where no two days are going to be the same.


    • Coordinate and prioritize several concurrent programs: gather requirements from stakeholders and industry standards, drive down open trades, and produce high-quality designs and documentation
    • Interpret and refine vehicle fluid schematics (P&ID’s) and translate them to as-designed reality
    • Perform fluid component sizing and analysis using hand calculations, custom scripts, and more advanced analysis packages
    • Work with structures, electrical systems, and launch and test engineers to ensure clean cross-functional design
    • Provide technical mentorship and expertise throughout the system architecting, design, and analysis processes
    • Develop and execute staffing plans, ensuring we have a well-rounded and robust team
    • Manage project schedules, compliance with internal and external requirements, budget, milestones, and track project status
    • Develop processes, systems, and trainings to improve team efficiency
    • Drive designs for reliability, manufacturability, operations, and maintenance

Basic Qualifications:

    • Bachelor's or advanced degree in aerospace engineering, mechanical engineering, or similar degree from accredited university
    • Experience designing and/or analyzing complex mechanical and fluid systems, using Piping and Instrumentation Diagrams (P&ID’s), CAD, and mechanical and fluid analysis software
    • 5+ years of professional engineering experience working in aerospace, defense, automotive, naval, oil/gas, power generation, or equivalent professional environments with direct hands-on experience developing complex fluid and/or mechanical systems
    • 2+ years of experience leading engineering teams and working across engineering groups to define requirements and implement solutions

Preferred Skills and Experience:

    • Design, analysis, and/or operational experience with propellants, cryogenics, pyrophoric chemicals, and high pressure systems
    • Experience working on government and commercial launch ranges, including regulatory compliance specifications like AFSPCMAN 91-710
    • Experience interrogating and designing piping assemblies using CAD and PLM (preferably Siemens NX and Teamcenter)
    • 2+ years creating and interpreting engineering drawings with GD&T
    • Ability to interpret piping and instrumentation diagrams (P&ID’s)
    • Strong knowledge of compressible/incompressible flow, fluid properties, and utilities like REFPROP
    • Experience using GFSSP or other fluid network analysis tools
    • Experience with technical writing and communication including engineering processes and design reviews
$160,000 - $190,000 a year
The salary range for this role is $160,000 - $190,000. 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, U.S. permanent residents, individuals granted U.S. asylum status, or individuals admitted in U.S. refugee status) 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.