Aerospace Engineer II

Sierra Nevada Corporation's Space Systems

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$37-50.87 /h
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Louisville, CO

Job Description

As posted by the hiring company

Job Overview:

SNC’s subsidiary, Sierra Space, based in Louisville, Colorado with operations in Madison, Wisconsin and Durham, North Carolina, designs and manufactures advanced spacecraft, satellites, propulsion and environmental systems, spacecraft subsystems and components for the U.S. government (including NASA), commercial customers and international organizations. Learn more about Sierra Space

Sierra Space is currently seeking a mid-level aerospace engineer to join our Aerosciences Team in support of the Dream Chaser spaceplane.

The Aerosciences Team is responsible for a broad range of analyses including vehicle venting, aerodynamic characterization through multiple flight regimes, aerothermal heating, and thruster plume dynamics. Aerosciences also leads wind tunnel testing efforts for the program.

As a member of Aerosciences, you will be exposed to a wide variety of challenging problems where analyses will range from using First Principle Models to complex CFD, database generation, and wind/plasma tunnel testing support.

The aerothermal analyst often directly interfaces heavily with the Thermal Protection Systems design team and is specifically focused on atmospheric reentry dynamics. Aerosciences is looking for a candidate who is energetic, a self-starter, and who can pick up new tasks with minimal oversight.

Functions Include:

  • Support and development of hypersonic aerothermal CFD analysis, including grid generation, running of various solvers, and post-processing

  • Generate, run, and process CFD campaigns

  • Develop boundary conditions for thermal analysis

  • Generate detailed thermal analysis models

  • Assess detailed entry thermal models for integration into the top level vehicle thermal model

  • Working with latest trajectories and Aerosciences’ databases for model verification and validation

  • Coordinate with Program IPTs for vehicle updates and changes

  • Work closely with Thermal Protection System (TPS) manufacturing team to ensure design compliance and certification

  • Perform post-flight reconstruction and comparisons to pre-flight predictions


  • Bachelor’s degree in mechanical or aerospace engineering

  • Relevant work experience may substitute for required education.

  • Experience with CFD or thermal analysis

  • Competency using MATLAB or Python

  • Strong interpersonal skills, position will require interfacing many engineers from a variety of disciplines

  • Ability to work in a highly collaborative, fast-paced environment


  • Master’s degree in engineering desired with 5 or more years of experience

  • Strong background in flow physics as it relates to aerospace with a focus on aerothermal environments

  • Experience with wind tunnel testing in the following flight regimes is highly desired: subsonic, transonic, supersonic, and hypersonic

  • Experience with CFD pre and post processing tools: Pointwise, GridPro, Tecplot, Paraview

  • Experience with computational fluid dynamic codes: StarCCM+, Ansys Fluent, CFD++, OpenFOAM, Fun3D, DPLR.

  • Experience with Thermal Desktop, SpaceClaim and SIDNA to conduct thermal analyses

  • Ability to optimize and modernize existing tools for accuracy and efficiency

  • Comfortable in Linux environments

  • The ability to obtain and maintain a Security Clearance may be required Learn more about the background check process for Security Clearances


To conform to U.S. Government international trade regulations, applicant must be a U.S. Citizen, lawful permanent resident of the U.S., protected individual as defined by 8 U.S.C. 1324b(a)(3), or eligible to obtain the required authorizations from the U.S. Department of State or U.S. Department of Commerce.

With 30+ years of proven spaceflight heritage, Sierra Space has provided more than 4,000 space systems, subsystems and components to customers worldwide, and participated in more than 500 missions to space, including to Mars. The company has technology in production and in development to enable space habitats for short- and long-duration space travel, a fleet

of Dream Chaser spaceplanes, and the first free-flying commercial space station. Please visit to learn more about Sierra Space, its business areas, capabilities, programs, products and services.

Estimated Starting Salary Range: $76,956.28 - $105,814.89

Sierra Space offers a generous benefit package, including medical, dental, and vision plans, 401(k) with 150% match up to 8%, life insurance, 3 weeks paid time off, tuition reimbursement, and more.

As COVID-19 continues to significantly impact our employees, families and communities, we are taking action to address the increased risk and uncertainty COVID-19 and associated variants pose in the workplace. SNC is committed to supporting our employees while ensuring we continue to meet essential national security needs of our country.

With employee health and safety as our top priority, and as a federal contractor, SNC will continue to require COVID-19 vaccination status for all employees including new hires. In accordance with applicable requirements, all current and newly hired employees who are unvaccinated may be required to adhere to enhanced onsite safety protocols including weekly COVID-19 testing, face coverings, and social distancing.

The status of applicable COVID-19 vaccination requirements are subject to change depending on applicable court orders and the course of ongoing litigation. Candidates may later be required to show proof of COVID-19 vaccination or have an approved exemption.

At Sierra Space, our mission is to dream, innovate, inspire and empower the next generation to transform humanity through technology and imagination. As an Equal Opportunity Employer, we welcome our employees to bring their whole selves to their work. Sierra Space is committed to fostering an inclusive, accepting, and diverse environment free of discrimination on the basis of race, color, age, religion, sex, sexual orientation, gender identity, national origin, disability, or status as a protected veteran. Contributions to Sierra Space come in many shapes and styles, and we believe diversity in our workforce fosters new and greater ways to dream, innovate, and inspire.