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Chief Engineer, Bipropellant Propulsion

Chief Engineer, Bipropellant Propulsion

Job ID 
Engineering - Project Engineering

More information about this job


Aerojet Rocketdyne in Redmond, Washington produces chemical rocket engine assemblies and propulsion systems for in-space propulsion for commercial, civil, and defense applications. Missions include interplanetary exploration, Earth orbit raising, and orbit maintenance for small, medium, and very large spacecraft. The bipropellant chief engineer reports to the chief engineer for space systems, and is responsible for the technical management of the in-space bipropellant product line. The bipropellant chief engineer manages product line engineering resources, ensures the thoroughness, adequacy, and urgency of technical decisions and anomaly investigations, works with business development and programs to develop and execute the product line technology roadmap, supports product line affordability in cooperation with program management and business development, and leads the product line Systems Engineering Integration Team (SEIT). At Aerojet Rocketdyne, the bipropellant chief engineer collaborates with multiple disciplines inside the company and with our customers to deliver the hardware to make these missions possible, successful, and cost effective.

Essential Job Functions (Including % of Time for Each)

60% - Lead and/or support technical activities across multiple programs required to design, assemble and test in-space bipropellant rocket engines to meet customer requirements and verify their suitability for the intended use. Provide broad-based engineering leadership to achieve program objectives while ensuring technical excellence, product performance, and customer confidence.  Assure compliance to company policy and procedures (including standard work) within all program technical support activities. Maintain technical excellence and consistency in planning (Design Development Plans), execution (Technical Decision Making, Design Reviews), and product ownership. Lead failure investigations/root cause analysis activities as required. Provide feedback and interaction to show our customers that Aerojet Rocketdyne is the best value supplier for their bipropellant thruster needs.


15% - Lead the bipropellant Systems Engineering Integration Team (SEIT) comprised of functional engineers supporting the in-space bipropellant product line. Track program execution, resource support, cost of poor quality (COPQ), upcoming obsolescence, and critical issues within the product line, leading actions within the SEIT as required to maintain and improve product line performance.


10% - Support proposal activities and manage internal research and development efforts. Perform technology development and road-mapping activities to maintain Aerojet Rocketdyne’s position as a world leader in in-space bipropellant propulsion.


10% - Provide coaching and career development management for the project engineers and component product engineers supporting the bipropellant product line. Work proactively with the program management team to address resource conflicts and develop needed skill sets to support technical excellence.


5% - Maintain a visible, respected presence in the propulsion technical community and serve as an internal and external technical expert on in-space bipropellant propulsion.


Requires a Bachelor’s degree in a related technical discipline and at least 9 years of related experience with propulsion systems and technologies. Advanced degree and development/production experience with bipropellant rocket engines highly desired. A general knowledge of related disciplines such as material science, thermal and structural analysis, reliability and maintainability, systems engineering, spacecraft integration, and mission planning is also desirable. Applicant must have a good understanding and demonstrated practice of root cause and corrective action methodologies.  Must have excellent interpersonal skills, as well as high quality written and oral communication skills. This position requires proficiency in Microsoft Office products (Word, Excel and PowerPoint). Travel is required, as needed, within the United States to customers and suppliers.


US Citizenship required. Must be able to obtain and maintain a U.S. Security Clearance at the appropriate level (U.S. Citizenship required). Must also be able to satisfy federal government requirements for access to government information, and having dual citizenship may preclude you from being able to meet this requirement.



Work Environment and Physical Requirements:

Employees in these positions must possess mobility to work in a standard office setting and to use standard office equipment, including a computer; stamina to sit or stand and maintain attention to detail despite interruptions; may occasionally lift/carry/push/pull up to 25 pounds; may require occasional walking, climbing, stooping, crouching, and/or bending; and vision to read printed materials and a computer screen, and hearing and speech to communicate in person and over the telephone. May require the ability to travel by air or auto. May require the use of personal protective equipment such as safety glasses, safety shoes, and shop coat. These positions may be expected to work varying shifts and hours to ensure successful operation of activities in the organization.


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