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Senior Thermal Design Engineer

K2 Space

K2 Space

Los Angeles, CA, USA
Posted on Thursday, October 26, 2023

The Role

The Thermal Design Engineer will be a core driver of the overall spacecraft architecture while executing detailed trade studies to find new and novel ways to implement the spacecraft’s thermal systems. You will have demonstrated capabilities on in-orbit integrated thermal analysis of spacecraft components by using both first principles hand calculations as well analytical model using software tools including, but not limited to, Thermal Desktop, Ansys IcePak, and Python for automation purposes.


  • Work with other engineering subsystems owners to develop robust thermal design for avionics boxes and other electro-mechanical subsystems

  • Develop and maintain thermal models for spacecraft and sub-components using Thermal Desktop and Ansys

  • Interface with vendors and launcher providers to understand their design and translate it into thermal-related requirements

  • Automate data analysis to support architectural trades effectively

  • Work with mechanical teams to develop passive and active thermal control hardware for the spacecraft including radiators, heaters, heat pipes, surface coating etc..

  • Work with avionics teams to develop thermal models and thermal tests for electronic assemblies

  • Work with GNC teams to define and thermally analyze nominal and contingency cases for in-orbit operations of the spacecraft

Basic Qualifications

  • 3+ years of experience with radiative and conductive thermal modeling of spacecraft systems using Thermal Desktop or similar tools

  • 3+ years of experience with selection, sizing, and design of thermal control hardware including, but not limited to, heat pipes, heaters, stickers, OSR, thermal straps, thermal paints, tapes, MLI, TEC

  • 1+ year of experience with thermal cycling and thermal vacuum testing including predictions, setup, instrumentation and thermal model correlation

Nice to Have

  • Experience with full-vehicle thermal vacuum testing and model correlation

  • Experience with spacecraft thermal design optimized for cost, reliability, performance and manufacturability.

  • Experience with integrated thermal analysis of spacecraft and rocket

  • Experience with solar panel thermal modeling

  • Experience with electrical PCBA thermal modeling and thermal interface materials (thermal grease, gap pads, etc.)

  • Experience with spacecraft primary radiator design and analysis

  • Knowledge of Atlassian software environments

  • Experience with Python, C/C++, or Matlab for thermal modeling and automated data analysis

Compensation and Benefits:

  • Base salary range for this role is $100,000 - $180,000 + equity in the company

  • Salary will be based on several factors including, but not limited to: knowledge and skills, education, and experience level

  • Comprehensive benefits package including unlimited paid time off, medical/dental/vision/ coverage, life insurance, paid parental leave, and many other perks

If you don’t meet 100% of the preferred skills and experience, we encourage you to still apply! Building a spacecraft unlike any other requires a team unlike any other and non-traditional career twists and turns are encouraged! If you need a reasonable accommodation as part of your application for employment or interviews with us, please let us know.

ITAR Requirements

To conform to U.S. Government space technology export regulations, including the International Traffic in Arms Regulations (ITAR) you must be a U.S. citizen, lawful permanent resident of the U.S., protected individual as defined by 8 U.S.C. 1324b(a)(3), or eligible to obtain the required authorizations from the U.S. Department of State. Learn more about the ITAR here.

Equal Opportunity

K2 Space is an Equal Opportunity Employer; employment with K2 Space 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, gender identity, marital status, mental or physical disability or any other legally protected status.