Engineer - EO/IR Systems Job ID 9985

Subject Matter Expert – EO IR Systems

The Space Dynamics Laboratory (SDL) Strategic and Military Space Division is seeking a highly skilled EO/IR systems engineer to perform analysis of electro-optical and infrared (EO/IR) systems and subsystems as a subject matter expert (SME) in Colorado Springs, CO.  Candidates are required to have demonstrated technical skills and subject matter expertise in space systems and ballistic missile defense systems.  The selected candidate will support Missile Defense Agency programs, including, specifically, the MDA Space Systems Directorate. 

Key Responsibilities:

  • Evaluating designs against mission requirements, including support to detailed performance analysis, requiring domain-specific knowledge of the missile defense mission area, missile phenomenology and tools
  • Evaluating assembly, integration, and test plans against mission requirements, advising the government team on the adequacy of proposed test and calibration plans
  • Working as an SME with cross-disciplinary teams on projects that will result in flight hardware
  • Understanding the US Government design review process (SRR, PDR, CDR, etc.) and reviewing mission concepts and proposed hardware and software designs
  • Working with senior government and SDL leadership on feasibility, requirements and performance trade studies 
  • Reducing mission concepts to fundamental elements that can be expressed as requirements
  • Modeling different EO/IR sensors and noise contributions to sensors
  • Detailed understanding of radiometry, calibration, and estimation of EO/IR sensor system performance
  • Communicating effectively through written reports and presentations

The nature of the work is rewarding and at times fast paced. The position is co-located with a government team in a secure facility at Schriever AFB.  It requires interpersonal skills and an understanding of, and willingness to work within, SDL’s role within the government team.  The selected candidate will be required to familiarize himself/herself with other technical resources at SDL, reaching back frequently for support and access analysis tools, capabilities and expertise.  Employees feel a sense of accomplishment from working on vital national security projects from concept through design, implementation, test, and delivery.


Required Qualifications: 

  • BS in electrical or mechanical engineering, physics, applied physics, or optical engineering 
  • Demonstrated proficiency with relevant analytical tools (e.g. MATLAB, FRED, Zemax, Photopia) and MS Office (Word, PPT, Excel, etc.)
  • Practical, hands-on experience with radiometry, sensor and payload design and development, calibration, test, and analysis of calibration data
  • Mastery of the processes and tools by which payload calibration data contributes to the development of algorithms for data exploitation
  • Strong analytical background and the ability to work well with scientists, engineers, and managers and other SMEs
  • Occasional travel may be required to support programs
  • Current TS/SCI security clearance

Preferred Qualifications:

  • MS or PhD in electrical or mechanical engineering, physics, applied physics, or optical engineering
  • Experience with the following:
  • Space systems
  • BMDS systems and algorithms for exploitation of sensor data
  • Writing technical reports and presentations
  • Working closely with customers


About SDL: SDL, a unit of the nonprofit Utah State University Research Foundation, has been solving the technical challenges faced by the military, science community, and industry since 1959. SDL offers flexible work schedules and competitive salaries and benefits. As a University Affiliated Research Center (UARC), SDL also offers unique benefits, such as company contribution of 14.2% of annual gross earnings for retirement for exempt staff and discounted USU tuition of 50% for employees and dependents.


*Affirmative Action - Equal Opportunity Employer