Mechanical Ground Systems Engineer II

Job Details

Job ID: 12417

New ideas are all around us, but only a few will change the world. That’s our focus at JPL. We ask the biggest questions, then search the universe for answers—literally. We build upon ideas that have guided generations, then share our discoveries to inspire generations to come. Your mission—your opportunity—is to seek out the answers that bring us one step closer. If you’re driven to discover, create, and inspire something that lasts a lifetime and beyond, you’re ready for JPL.


Located in Pasadena, California, JPL has a campus-like environment situated on 177 acres in the foothills of the San Gabriel Mountains and offers a work environment unlike any other: we inspire passion, foster innovation, build collaboration, and reward excellence.


This unique opportunity is part of the Mechanical Systems Engineering, Fabrication and Test Division which engages in research, technology development, and the creation of advanced mechanical, thermal, propulsion, and electronic packaging systems with expertise that spans the full breath of mechanical disciplines and is applied from architectural concept development through operations.

 As the Mechanical Ground Systems Engineer you will be working for JPL's Mechanical Fabrication and Test Section which maintains technical support facilities and resources that provide the services required to fabricate, assemble, and test electro-mechanical developmental and flight hardware.  This Section develops and matures equipment and technologies, which enable and enhance our fabrication and environmental test capability for current and future missions.   

Some Challenges You Will Tackle:

  • Collaborate with cognizant engineers/customers on hardware design features to improve manufacturability.
  • Work with cognizant engineers in the development of precision hardware for flight project applications.
  • Assist engineers/technicians with process improvements, certifications and documentation.
  • Support Flight tech teams in the planning, resource acquisition and the detail procedures for the fabrication and assembly of MGSE & Flight Hardware.
  • Work with Cog E’s to understand design & test requirements of Flight hardware & support accordingly.
  • Work closely with M&P Cog E’s to understand different thermal processes & implement them on flight hardware.
  • Write and execute IBATS/PBATS for flight hardware mechanical assembly, integration, structural bonding & thermal coatings.
  • Write and execute BATS for MGSE assembly & its proof testing using JPL guidelines.
  • Manage Blanket & Thermal coatings shops including inventories & submitting purchasing requisitions to order blanket material, thermal coatings & supplies.
  • Work closely with Industrial Engineer on daily basis to manage work flow through the group.
  • Support Assembly, Test and Launch Operations (ATLO) activities at JPL and at launch site.
  • Perform setup operations on environmental test equipment and mechanical support equipment, start and operate test equipment from detailed procedures and make adjustments as required.
  • Plan, initiate and monitor hardware fabrication activities.
  • Utilize multiple modules in the Oracle Discrete Manufacturing suite of programs, to develop the implementation plan for the work, estimate work in progress, the technical progress of the work and resolve any technical, cost or schedule issues as they arise.
  • Establish and maintain interfaces with multiple JPL customers.
  • Assist in the process of locating, evaluating, and establishing new vendors as a laboratory resource in fabrication.
  • Participate in "Make or Buy" decisions and interface with outside vendors.





  • Bachelor’s degree in Mechanical Engineering, or related technical discipline with typically a minimum of 3 years of related experience or a Master’s degree in similar disciplines with a minimum of 1 years of related experience or a PhD with 0 years of related experience.
  • Must have general understanding, technical expertise and experience in the following areas: Fabrication techniques/metal processing / manufacturing engineering and familiar with aerospace materials; reading and interpreting engineering drawings & GD&T. Design for fab, MGSE & Flight Hardware Integration.
  • Ability to effectively with engineers/customers concerning feasibility, design, and evaluation of complex equipment and experiments.
  • Excellent verbal and written communication, computer skills and be able to work independently with minimal supervision.
  • Ability to travel to work in distant locations, domestic and/or international, as needed.
  • Experience in LabView, and SolidWorks, Unigraphics, or similar CAD tools.

Desired Qualifications:

  • 3 years prior experience in a manufacturing/machine shop environment, specializing in multi-axis machining of complex parts, emphasis of prototypes and concurrent engineering.
  • At least two years of experience in any four of the following disciplines: MGSE fab, integration & test / Flight Hardware Handling & Assembly including launch operations /Structural Bonding / Pyro Techniques / Thermal Coatings / Thermal Blanket Fab & Installation / Electromechanical components assembly, integration & test / Mechanism Specialist; assemble, troubleshoot and data acquisition.
  • Ability to work on assignments that are complex in nature using considerable practical judgment, making recommendations and resolving problems.
  • Experience working in an MRP environment.
  • Ability to take verbal and incomplete design elements and recommend to engineering personnel solutions in the manufacture process of prototype hardware.

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JPL is an Equal Opportunity Employer. All qualified applicants will receive consideration for employment without regard to sex, race, color, religion, national origin, citizenship, ancestry, age, marital status, physical or mental disability, medical condition, genetic information, pregnancy or perceived pregnancy, gender, gender identity, gender expression, sexual orientation, protected military or veteran status or any other characteristic or condition protected by Federal, state or local law.

In addition, JPL is a VEVRAA Federal Contractor.

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The Jet Propulsion Laboratory is a federal facility. Due to rules imposed by NASA, JPL will not accept applications from citizens of designated countries or those born in a designated country unless they are Legal Permanent Residents of the U.S or have other protected status under 8 U.S.C. 1324b(a)(3). The Designated Countries List is available here.