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Stratolaunch, LLC Sr. Test Operations Engineer in Mojave, California

Stratolaunch is developing an air-launch platform to contribute to high-speed research and development. The goal of Stratolaunch is to use the air-launch platform for enabling technologies that may not exist otherwise. Stratolaunch has the potential for creating technology development opportunities for commercial, philanthropic, and governmental organizations to collect rich and actionable data and drive advancements in science, research, and technology.

As the Test Operations Engineer, you will accept a critical role in achieving new milestones in aviation and enable development of high-speed test vehicles to be air-launched from the Stratolaunch Carrier Aircraft. You will provide effective leadership as the focal point for high-speed vehicle test planning and execution, to include the potential to act as a Talon Lead for the mission control team during test events. You should possess experience in test vehicle configuration control, test planning and resourcing, and conducting disciplined, effective developmental flight test, or similar experience in a technically demanding environment.

As a key member of the Stratolaunch team, you will have an essential role in meeting our ambitious company objectives. You must establish and maintain effective relationships with colleagues on a small, agile design-to-flight team. You will be challenged with bringing unique and complex aircraft from initial airworthiness to operational use, at a company that believes in giving our team members the authority and responsibility to succeed.


  • Develop and maintain test objectives, test plans, test procedures, and mission cards for ground and flight testing for the high-speed test vehicles

  • Coordinate closely with vehicle engineering team to define test and data requirements, and identify system safety or operational concerns

  • Coordinate closely with multiple vehicle crew chiefs and ground support personnel to ensure operational priorities are understood and met

  • Organize preparation for and lead Test Readiness Review and Flight Readiness Review activities

  • Identify test hazards and develop mitigation actions

  • Manage and communicate test-specific vehicle limitations and test readiness review actions

  • Execute Talon-A vehicle tests

  • Coordinate on-vehicle priorities and schedules to meet final assembly and test requirements

  • Work closely with the respective vehicle Crew Chiefs to ensure proper vehicle configuration and maintenance is complete

  • Assist with functional system test planning and execution in areas such as avionics, flight control actuation, recovery systems, propulsion integration and propulsion system demonstration activities

  • Work with Carrier Aircraft operations team to ensure successful vehicle mating and integrated systems testing is accomplished

  • Assist with the coordination of range, airspace and support resources in support of high-speed vehicle flight tests

  • Execute integrated vehicle ground test activities and as key member of mission control room team during flight test activities

  • Coordinate high-speed vehicle test data analysis and ensure test results are appropriately reviewed, documented, and controlled

  • Provide key inputs to and mature the high-speed vehicle Concept of Operations including ground and flight operational procedures, timelines, checklists, and emergency response actions, starting from payload receipt through recovery of vehicles and return of payload

  • Provide inputs to FAA launch licensing and government test range coordination efforts

  • Participate in payload customer meetings, including meetings for payload integration/de-integration planning, integrated vehicle testing and data product delivery

  • Assist with payload hardware and software integration and integrated test on high-speed test vehicle

  • Travel, as needed, to support design, mission planning, and other tasks for the Program Director

  • Demonstrate integrity, accountability and initiative to fulfill commitments


To perform this job successfully, an individual must be able to perform each essential responsibility satisfactorily. The requirements listed below are representative of the knowledge, skill and/or ability required. Reasonable accommodations may be made to enable individuals with disabilities to perform the essential functions.


  • Knowledge of and experience with one or more of these disciplines: electrical engineering, avionics, instrumentation, software development, liquid rocket propulsion, aircraft flight test, or launch vehicle integration

  • Experience with new, experimental, or modified aircraft, launch vehicles or spacecraft, technical and safety review boards, and configuration control methods

  • Ability to analyze and prioritize tasks on their own initiative, and drive projects to completion, to fit within overall business goals

  • Ability to lead a small team, make decisions, communicate requirements, and quickly adapt to changing priorities

  • Knowledge of risk management or safety management systems

  • Have excellent written and verbal communication skills

  • Be able to work irregular hours and work days, and travel periodically

  • Ability to obtain and maintain a security clearance

Highly Desired

  • Bachelor’s degree in engineering, or similar technical foundation

  • Flight Test Engineer graduate of a recognized test pilot school long course

  • Experience with launch vehicle or aircraft systems design

  • Experience with subsystem level test planning and execution

  • Experience as a Flight Test Engineer or control room engineer on an active test program

  • Experience with launch vehicle or aircraft requirements verification

  • Experience with launch vehicle, air-launch, or high-speed flight programs

  • Experience with government flight test organizations, ranges, and procedures


  • Bachelor’s degree (B.S.) from accredited institution and 5-plus years of relevant experience, or equivalent combination of education and experience

Required computer skills

  • MS Office

  • Configuration management tools

  • Engineering and test data analysis tools such as IADS and MATLAB

Special remarks

  • $120,000-$155,000

  • Travel estimated to be approximately 5%

  • This position is located in Mojave, CA

Applicants must be a US citizen or Green Card holder to be considered for this role.

Stratolaunch is an equal opportunity employer that values diversity at our company. We encourage people from all walks of life to apply, without regard to race, color, religion, sex, sexual orientation, gender identity, national origin, protected veteran status, disability or any other characteristic protected by law. Our management team does not tolerate discrimination or harassment at any point during our employees’ and applicants’ time with us, especially with respect to recruitment, hiring, placement, promotion, transfer, training, compensation, benefits, employee activities, and general treatment during employment.

Equal Employment Opportunity is the Law:

Job Category: Flight Operations