Principal Engineer, Behavior Planning (R2582)

San Diego Metro Area / Dallas Metro Area
Hivemind – Pilot /
Full Time Employee /
Introduction to Shield AI
Founded in 2015, Shield AI is a venture-backed defense technology company whose mission is to protect service members and civilians with intelligent systems. In pursuit of this mission, Shield AI is building the world’s best AI pilot. Its AI pilot, Hivemind, has flown a fighter jet (F-16), a vertical takeoff and landing drone (V-BAT), and a quadcopter (Nova). The company has offices in San Diego, Dallas, Washington DC and abroad. Shield AI’s products and people are currently in the field actively supporting operations with the U.S. Department of Defense and U.S. allies. 

The Planning and Controls (PAC) team is an agile group of engineers focused on researching and developing state-of-the-art algorithms that drive intelligent and confidence-inspiring flight behaviors while accounting for an uncertain and dynamic world. 

As a member of the PAC Behavior Group, you will work on developing algorithms and writing production grade software for behavior planning on autonomous aerial vehicles. 

What You'll Do:

    • Research, design, and implement state of the art behaviors and planning algorithms for real time autonomous systems 
    • Write clean, well-documented, production grade software in C++ with a test-driven development philosophy 
    • Take new features from ideation to prototyping, full implementation, flight testing, and all the way to field deployment
    • Develop tools for rapid prototypes, simulation, visualization, etc. 
    • Participate in brainstorm sessions and software design for challenging issues 
    • Develop your professional skills and knowledge via regular literature reviews and self-directed learning 
    • Work in a collaborative development environment, with an emphasis on continuous integration & delivery, test-driven development 
    • Work with middleware frameworks (e.g. ROS, PX4, etc.), build tools (e.g. CMake, Bazel), and compiler toolchains (e.g. gcc, llvm) 

Required Qualifications:

    • M.S in computer science, robotics, aerospace or related engineering field with 12+ years of professional experience
    • OR Ph.D. in relevant engineering field with 10+ years relevant experience 
    • Hands on experience in the autonomous vehicle or UAV industry
    • Experience shipping complex robotics or autonomy products in the commercial sector 
    • Experience with research or implementing state-of-the-art algorithms in at least one of the following areas:  
    • Task and Motion Planning 
    • Planning under Uncertainty 
    • Task & Resource Allocation 
    • Heterogeneous or Homogeneous Robotic Teaming 
    • Human Robot Teaming 
    • Logistical Planning of Vehicle Routes 
    • You have a demonstrated record of working hard, being a trustworthy teammate, holding yourself and others to high standards, and being kind to others 
    • You have strong communication skills and are able to effectively articulate ideas and timelines to cross-functional groups

Preferred Qualifications:

    • Experience shipping two commercial products from conception to commercialization
    • Proficiency in Python 
    • Experience using Foxglove 
$238,256 - $333,558 a year


Total package details:
Regular employee positions: Salary within range listed above + Bonus + Benefits + Equity
Temporary employee positions: Hourly within range listed above + temporary benefits package (applicable after 60 days of employment)
*Interns/Military Fellows/Part-time not eligible for bonus, benefits or equity
Actual compensation is influenced by a wide array of factors including but not limited to skill set, level of experience, licenses and certifications, and specific work location. All offers are contingent on a cleared background and possible reference check.

If you're interested in being part of our team, apply now! 

Shield AI is proud to be an equal opportunity workplace and is an affirmative action employer. We are committed to equal employment opportunity regardless of race, color, ancestry, religion, sex, national origin, sexual orientation, age, marital status, disability, gender identity or Veteran status. If you have a disability or special need that requires accommodation, please let us know.