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Systems Engineer

Orbit Fab

Orbit Fab

Software Engineering
harwell, didcot ox11, uk
Posted on Wednesday, January 24, 2024

Orbit Fab's mission is to create the foundational infrastructure that will fuel a bustling in-space economy, capable of sustaining permanent jobs in space.

Today, satellites cannot be refueled, which severely constrains their mobility and inhibits the development of economic activities in space.

Orbit Fab breaks the single-use paradigm, pioneering our Gas Stations in Space™ refueling infrastructure and RAFTI™ technology to deliver propellant in space, enabling lower-cost satellite construction, increased maneuverability, precise control, and extended lifespans. The possibilities are unprecedented, opening the doors to unimagined operational strategies and business models.

Since our establishment in 2018, we have already achieved the successful launch of three tankers to space. With offices in both the US and UK, we are working in close collaboration with partners and customers across the space industry. Orbit Fab is rapidly ramping up capabilities and requires exceptional talent to tackle important challenges. Our roles offer wide ranging opportunities to have a demonstrable impact and enable a bustling in space economy.


As a systems engineer, you’ll provide experience, insight, and practical problem-solving abilities for complex space systems. A strong candidate will call upon a breadth of experience developing systems within budget and on time. Your days will consist of leading system and mission concepts, development, testing, and production of Orbit Fab’s technologies to enable the development of an in-orbit propellant supply chain. You bring knowledge and passion in space systems engineering (specifically, experience across both big and small space missions at a variety of institutions) or other complex systems.

We describe here 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 designing/building/coding stuff will trump specific qualification or tools any day!


  • Define system architectures for refuelling vehicles and support systems engineering tasks, interfacing with all subsystem leads.
  • Establish preliminary mission designs and analysis, including in the proprietary UMPIRE tool.
  • Support BD activities from an engineering perspective
  • Manage and maintain development schedules, systems requirements, and design budgets
  • Guide systems engineering processes and facilitate technical trades across the system
  • Participate in software and/or hardware development
  • Guide technical decision-making processes and development and support technical reviews
  • Plan and implement simulations and test campaigns to verify system performance and requirements compliance
  • Define, review, critique and redefine engineering processes
  • Identify technical issues and proactively implement resolutions to mitigate schedule and cost impacts
  • Identify key technology suppliers and oversee component selection, followup
  • Contribute technical knowledge to proposal development and writing


  • Experience taking a system from concept phase through prototyping, detailed design, AIT, launch and operation
  • Demonstrated collaboration with space systems engineering teams
  • Experience with generation of verification and validation plans as well as executing qualification campaigns
  • Deep knowledge and experience in one or more of the following areas:
    • Controls
    • Sensors
    • Sensor Fusion
    • Optical Systems
    • Flight Software Development
    • Orbital Mechanics
    • Structures
    • Mechanisms
    • Propulsion Systems
    • Fluid Components
    • Spacecraft Operations
  • Experience defining customer needs and crafting engineering requirements, including a proven ability to successfully push back on unnecessary or mission affecting customer requirements.
  • Excellent communication skills, both written and verbal
  • BS degree and three (3) years of related engineering experience, or
  • MS degree in related field and two (2) years of related engineering experience, or Ph.D. in related field
  • If you don’t have the exact years or degree listed above, but your passion can’t be matched, don’t hesitate to apply!


  • 5+ years of experience in satellite design, development, test, and operations
  • MS or higher in Aerospace Engineering, Electrical Engineering, Computer Science/Software Engineering, or similar STEM subject
  • Understanding of orbital mechanics and spacecraft flight dynamics
  • Understanding of the spacecraft component supply chain
  • Demonstrated experience with Jama Connect
  • Experience with both low and high budget space system development
  • Experience with spacecraft propulsion systems and/or pressure systems
  • Demonstrated experience working in a multi-disciplinary team

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.


The estimated salary range for this position is £45,000-£65,000, depending on experience.


The UK Orbit Fab office is based at Harwell Campus, the UK’s preeminent gateway to the space industry, and only a short drive from Oxford with convenient access to London.

We offer a range of benefits that can be discussed during the interview process.