Virgin Galactic

  • Avionics Test Engineer

    Job Locations US-CA-Long Beach
    Req No.
    Regular Full-Time
  • Who we are




    At Virgin Orbit, we launch the small satellite revolution, accessing space for missions that were previously unimaginable and fostering new ideas and technologies to create a truly spacefaring civilization. We deliver Virgin’s legendary customer service by pairing technological advancements with a clear focus on our customers’ needs. We build a workplace and a workforce for the future, knowing that our decisions and investments of today will launch the industries of tomorrow. We engage a diverse and inclusive community of dreamers and achievers in a shared mission to access space to improve life on Earth. At Virgin Orbit, we boost imagination. Search all of our job openings on our career portal.


    Position Summary

    Virgin Orbit (VO) is seeking a new member for our team to serve as Avionics Test Engineer. If you join us in this position, you will assist in pushing qualification and acceptance testing on avionics components for the LauncherOne small satellite launch program. This role is for a hands-on person with great attention to detail and excellent people skills. This is a full-time position at our rocket factory in beautiful Long Beach, California.

    Your Mission

    • Work under the direction of the Lead Test Engineer to understand the component requirements and verification test plan for Qualification and Acceptance testing of a component of L1
    • Perform Engineering and Formal Qualification Testing, monitoring the performance of avionics components during testing for anomalies, aggregating acquired data and reports, and presenting findings to the components’ Responsible Test Engineer and other team members
    • Produce professional and traceable documentation, including electrical and mechanical designs, and acceptance verification plan(s) for the test system
    • Adhere to the engineering processes and good practices of VO
    • Work within the software infrastructure for automated production test and simulated mission testing
    • Help Virgin Orbit do our part to make the world a better place
    • Constantly learn new things—and share them with your team members
    • Performs other duties as assigned

    What you bring

    If you want to join us, you’d better have all of these…

    • BS in Electrical, Computer, Aerospace or comparable Engineering in a related field
    • Proven Test Engineering skills:
      • 5+ years of hardware test for production and/or validation of PCBAs using custom electronics and fixturing
      • Experience executing test plans, and recommending improvements in collaboration with design engineers
      • Ability to read schematics and troubleshoot
      • Ability to work in a clean room facility and follow good safety and ESD practices
      • A passion for developing, diagnosing and fixing HW/SW embedded system integration issues
      • Experience working with communication protocols and sensors in embedded systems
      • Experience providing test data analysis for unit under test validation and working to test processes for production
    • Proven Project Management skills:
      • Experience working across engineering groups to present test outcomes, based on user needs
      • Execute deliverables based on prioritized implementation plans and timelines
      • Identify key unknowns and quickly close knowledge gaps
      • Deliver the highest value results quickly and iterate towards successive milestones
      • Maintain a high level of customer service for your end-users and colleagues
    • Technology skills:
      • Working knowledge of instrumentation, interfaces and sensors including DMMs, DAQ, Power Supplies, Oscilloscopes, and other lab equipment
      • Hands-on hardware integration experience including installation of electronic components and harness, and troubleshooting components, harnesses and sensors (including acceleration, pressure, acoustic, strain, position and thermal sensors)
      • Experience working with communication protocols including RS-232, RS-422, Fast and Gigabit Ethernet, PCIe, I2C, SPI, CAN bus
      • Experience working with motor driver and linear and switching power regulators
      • Experience working with FPGAs and ARM- and PowerPC-based embedded Linux computers
      • Experience working with industrial sensors including RTDs, thermocouples, 4-20mA transducers, IEPEs, cameras, and IMUs
    • Ability and willingness to thrive in a fast-paced, rapidly changing work environment
    • Driven, highly motivated, and committed to improvement
    • Ability to add something unique and positive to our team
    • Generally high level of all-around awesomeness
    • Must be able to work all shifts and available for overtime as well as weekends when needed
    • Must be able to stand for extended periods – 8 hours minimum
    • Must be able to stoop, bend, crawl, and being able to maneuver in tight spaces
    • Physically able to handle items weighing up to 25lbs (unassisted)
    • Valid CA driver’s license required with clean driving record

    … and you should probably have a bunch of these, too...

    • Strong documentation capabilities, including traceability principles
    • Proven National Instruments PXI Hardware experience
    • Proven knowledge of communication protocols and instrumentation hardware abstraction layers such as GPIB, Ethernet, RS-232, RS-422, RS-485, UDP, IVI, DAQmx, NI-Switch
    • Understanding and experience in environmental testing such as vibration, shock, vacuum and thermal
    • Experience with a defect tracking database
    • Experience with a version control system
    • Passion for space exploration and a firm belief in the utility of affordable access to space
    • Passion for space exploration and a firm belief in the utility of affordable access to space
    • Ability to thrive as a ‘one person team’



    ITAR Requirements
    To conform to U.S. Government space technology export regulations, applicant must be a U.S. citizen, lawful permanent resident of the U.S., protected individual as defined by ITAR (22 CFR §120.15) or eligible to obtain the required authorizations from the U.S. Department of State.

    Personal Requirements
    Our idea of a happy life: build rockets, work with brilliant people, serve purposeful customers, and open access to space. Sir Richard Branson’s belief is “If you get the perfect mix of people working for your company, you have a far greater chance of success.” From the very start, we have placed top priority on growing and fostering a team of creative, diverse, and talented women and men. In the words of Sir Richard Branson “We believe it’s better to have a hole in your team than an asshole in your team!”
    Search all of our job openings—

    Virgin Orbit is an Equal Opportunity Employer; employment with Virgin Orbit is governed on the basis of merit, competence and qualifications and will not be influenced in any manner by race, color, religion, gender, national origin/ethnicity, veteran status, disability status, age, sexual orientation, marital status, mental or physical disability or any other legally protected status.


    Not ready to apply? Build the Future with Us for general consideration.