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Senior Systems Engineer for GNC Requirements & Interfaces

Draper Labs
United States, Massachusetts, Cambridge
555 Technology Square (Show on map)
February 21, 2024

Senior Systems Engineer for GNC Requirements & Interfaces
Job Location


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Draper is an independent, nonprofit research and development company headquartered in Cambridge, MA. The 2,000+ employees of Draper tackle important national challenges with a promise of delivering successful and usable solutions. From military defense and space exploration to biomedical engineering, lives often depend on the solutions we provide. Our multidisciplinary teams of engineers and scientists work in a collaborative environment that inspires the cross-fertilization of ideas necessary for true innovation. For more information about Draper, visit www.draper.com.

Our work is very important to us, but so is our life outside of work. Draper supports many programs to improve work-life balance including workplace flexibility, employee clubs ranging from photography to yoga, health and finance workshops, off site social events and discounts to local museums and cultural activities. If this specific job opportunity and the chance to work at a nationally renowned R&D innovation company appeals to you, apply now www.draper.com/careers.

Equal Employment Opportunity

Draper is committed to creating a diverse environment and is proud to be an affirmative action and equal opportunity employer. We understand the value of diversity and its impact on a high-performance culture. All qualified applicants will receive consideration for employment without regard to race, color, religion, sex, disability, age, sexual orientation, gender identity, national origin, veteran status, or genetic information.

Draper is committed to providing access, equal opportunity and reasonable accommodation for individuals with disabilities in employment, its services, programs, and activities. To request reasonable accommodation, please contact hr@draper.com.


The GNC System Architecture group at Draper is seeking a Senior Systems Engineer to develop and manage GNC requirements and interface specifications for guidance, navigation, and control (GNC) systems in mission domains such as: strategic defense systems, hypersonic and space systems, precision guided munitions, and autonomous air/sea vehicles. This role will involve working across a multi-disciplinary team (including external and internal stakeholders) innovating new GNC system solutions over the full system development lifecycle.

Responsibilities of this position:

    Elicit stakeholder needs, define concept of operations, and identify the system context to bound the problem space that the system will address
  • Work with subject-matter experts across engineering teams to define requirements & interface specifications
  • Define expectations for verification & validation of requirements & interface specifications
  • Analyze requirements & interfaces to define architectures & system designs
  • Maintain traceability with higher and lower-level specifications as well as system architecture & design work products
  • Lead a culture of Model-Based Systems Engineering (MBSE) on Draper programs by establishing best practices and standards
  • Lead a team developing and managing one or more requirements & interface specifications
  • Present details of requirements & interfaces to both internal and external stakeholders

A successful candidate will be motivated to build deeper expertise in both the core mission domains and underlying GNC technology. This position will provide exposure to a wide range of advanced technologies (including inertial sensors, imagers, precision electronics, and advanced algorithms) as well as provide growth opportunities in the development of capabilities to address challenges in national security. Additionally, a successful candidate will be able to seamlessly join project teams that collaborate by sharing thoughts and opinions of individuals from a diverse set of experience and viewpoints in order to create the best possible technical solution.

Candidates are encouraged to include a cover letter that describes their interest in this position.


Required qualifications:

  • Master's degree or higher in Systems, Aerospace, Mechanical, or Electrical Engineering, Physics, Mathematics, Computer Science, or related fields
  • 5+ years of professional experience in development of complex defense/space systems (e.g. avionics, mission critical systems)
  • Experience as a systems engineering work product or team lead
  • Experience developing and managing requirements for complex systems
  • Experience identifying, designing, and managing interfaces for complex systems
  • Experience defining expectations for verification & validation of requirements & interface specifications
  • Experience maintaining traceability between requirements and system architecture & design work products
  • Technical depth in fields relevant to guidance, navigation, and control
  • Ability to support a full range of systems engineering activities for multiple programs
  • Strong presentation skills and the ability to articulate complex technical ideas to both internal and external stakeholders
  • Strong set of interpersonal and communication skills with demonstrated experience of fostering a culture of inclusion in the workplace

The following additional qualifications are highly desirable:

  • Familiarity with the INCOSE Systems Engineering Handbook or other standards
  • Experience planning and leading Systems Engineering Technical Reviews
  • Familiarity with DOORS (or similar requirements management tools)
  • Familiarity with MagicDraw/Cameo (or similar system modeling tools)
  • Experience assessing requirements compliance through modeling of dynamical systems and simulation-based performance analysis
  • Experience working with modern data bus / electrical interfaces for flight/space systems
  • Experience in an Agile development environment
  • Active security clearance

Applicants selected will be subject to a government security investigation and must meet eligibility requirements for access to classified information.


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