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Orbital Mechanics Analyst III, Mission Design

Orbit Fab

Orbit Fab

IT, Design
Lafayette, CO, USA
Posted on Thursday, July 6, 2023

With a vision for a bustling in-space economy that can support permanent jobs in space, Orbit Fab is building the fundamental infrastructure this entire economy can be built upon: a fuel supply in orbit.

Today, satellites cannot be refueled. A single-use paradigm severely limits satellite mobility and holds back the development of economic activities in space. Orbit Fab is building the first Gas Stations in Space™ refueling infrastructure. We develop the supply chain architecture and technology to deliver propellant in space, allowing satellites to be built for lower cost, to be more flexible and maneuverable, to be more precisely controlled, and to operate longer, enabling operations and business models that have never before been imagined..

Established in 2018, we have already flown three tankers to space; with the first one flown within one year of founding. Working closely with partners and customers across the space industry, we are making the thriving in-space economy a reality.


As a Systems Engineer at Orbit Fab, you would be responsible for: Orbit determination and GN&C system development, simulation and mathematical modeling, and performance analysis to understand and solve the challenges associated with refueling spacecraft in orbit. A large part of this will be to ensure compliance with existing and emerging rendezvous, proximity operations, and docking (RPOD) operations and systems.

This position is open to multiple levels of experience and exact roles/responsibilities will be tailored to the selected candidate. Don’t hesitate to apply if you are more or less experienced than listed! Below are the skills, qualifications, and responsibilities that we need to have as a team. You don't need all of them. Your aptitude for complex technical challenges and your practical experience solving problems and designing/building/coding stuff will trump specific qualification or tools any day!


  • Participate in the analysis of Orbit Fab mission architectures and spacecraft trajectories across the mission lifecycle from concept definition to flight operations
  • Lead mission design and maneuver planning activities from rendezvous through docking to ensuring optimal fueling profiles
  • Develop shuttle mission operations profiles and planning tools
  • Develop tools and analysis to support Orbit Fab’s Tanker constellation design.
  • Help to analyze GN&C system performance for Orbit Fab Tankers
  • Provide input to operations planning for Orbit Fab spacecraft
  • Identify and resolve GN&C performance-related issues and assist others in the resolution of issues, including ADCS.
  • Ability to concisely document the results of all verification, validation and analysis activities.
  • Directly interact with customers, both government and commercial.
  • Define and manage technical direction of RPOD contractor partners
  • Recommend additional Subject Matter Expertise as required
  • Participate in the analysis of Orbit Fab on-orbit operations and mission architectures, including Orbital Mechanics and constellation design.

Experience, Qualifications, and Characteristics

  • Experience developing simulations to analyze spacecraft trajectories and GN&C performance.
  • Experience developing GN&C algorithms and analyzing system performance for spacecraft in an integrated GN&C environment.
  • Experience with orbital mechanics and spaceflight dynamics.
  • Experience developing, verifying, and validating simulations, math models, etc.
  • Excellent oral and written communication skills.
  • Ability to work in a team environment.
  • Experience developing algorithms for guidance, navigation and control functions
  • Expertise working in a diverse, multidisciplinary team environment that includes business development, marketing, mechanical engineering, electrical and software engineering
  • Experience with GMAT, STK or other applicable astrodynamics tools
  • Experience with Matlab, Python, or similar
  • Excellent oral and written communication skills.
  • Must be a U.S. Citizen/Person and able to successfully complete a U.S. government background investigation
  • BS degree and three (3) years of related engineering experience, or MS degree in related field and one (1) year of related engineering experience

Nice to have

  • Expertise with MATLAB and Simulink toolboxes and Embedded Coder
  • Experience with systems engineering and requirements management tools such as Asana, Valispace, Jira, Jama, or similar.
  • Experience developing flight software
  • Familiarity or expertise with Control Systems including spacecraft Attitude Determination and Control system
  • Experience with computer vision, sensor fusion, and machine learning
  • Experience with requirements management, decomposition, and communication
  • Expertise working spacecraft or launch vehicle operations
  • MS or PhD. in Aerospace Engineering with a focus on GN&C, flight controls, orbital mechanics.
  • Familiarity with Rendezvous, Proximity Operations, and Docking flight operations and procedures.
  • Direct experience with LINUX, C, etc.
  • Active Security Clearance.

The salary range for this position is $95,000-120,000

If you feel you would succeed in the role above, we encourage you to apply regardless of whether or not you meet all of the requirements listed.

Location and Benefits

Orbit Fab is based out of Lafayette, Colorado and all roles are based in Colorado. We offer fully covered benefits and flexible work hours.


To conform to US Government space technology export regulations, applicants must be a US citizen, lawful permanent resident of the US, protected individual as defined by 8 USC 1324b(a)(3), or eligible to obtain the required authorization from the US Department of State.

Orbit Fab Inc does not discriminate in employment on the basis of race, color, religion, sex (including pregnancy and gender identity), national origin, political affiliation, sexual orientation, marital status, disability, genetic information, age, membership in an employee organization, retaliation, parental status, military service, or other non-merit factor.