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Flight Vehicles & Technology Engineer

European Space Agency

European Space Agency

noordwijk, netherlands
Posted on Saturday, November 18, 2023



Vacancy in the Directorate of Technology, Engineering and Quality.


ESA is an equal opportunity employer, committed to achieving diversity within the workforce and creating an inclusive working environment. We therefore welcome applications from all qualified candidates irrespective of gender, sexual orientation, ethnicity, beliefs, age, disability or other characteristics. Applications from women are encouraged.



Flight Vehicles & Technology Engineer


This post is classified A2-A4 on the Coordinated Organisations’ salary scale



ESTEC, Noordwijk, Netherlands, with resident assignment at ESA Headquarters Daumesnil, Paris, France


Flight Vehicles and Technology Project Engineer reporting to the Head of the Flight Vehicles and Aerothermodynamics Section (parent organisation unit) , in the Propulsion, Aerothermodynamics and Flight Vehicles Engineering Division , Mechanical Department, Directorate of Technology, Engineering and Quality.


For your first assignment as Flight Vehicles and Technology Project Engineer, you will be located at ESA HQ-Daumesnil and provide functional support to the Space Transportation Beyond LEO Unit (STS-FL, requesting organisation unit) within the Future Space Transportation Preparation Department of the Directorate of Space Transportation. 


You will support the ramp-up of system and service-oriented projects to be implemented in the roadmap for future space transportation preparation.


•    Providing technical expertise and analysis in the field of flight vehicle engineering and aerothermodynamics throughout all project phases of the Future Launchers Preparatory Programme (FLPP); 
•    Drafting statements of work for the relevant FLPP system and technology activities, with internal support and technical assistance, and supporting the subsequent bidding process;
•    Managing and participating in the evaluation of tender submissions, as well as the negotiation and implementation of the corresponding contracts, in collaboration with the Procurement Department and other relevant ESA Departments;
•    Organising and supporting negotiations on the contracts with industry;
•    Managing the relevant contracted activities, including the assessment of deliverables and the timely delivery of technological developments;
•    Supporting STS-FL in the update of future space transportation systems (STS-F) technology and demonstration roadmaps in collaboration with customer projects, technologies and demonstrator teams, and in line with the programme system needs;
•    Monitoring applicable scientific and technological trends and maintaining state-of-the-art expertise;
•    Defining, initiating and managing R&D activities covering both long- and short-term needs, with the support of the parent organisation unit;
•    Organising and supporting the management of the sessions of the STS-F Technology Roadmap Committee;
•    Coordinating activities performed in collaboration with European industry and the academic world, promoting ESA’s activities to students, researchers and universities, while stimulating cross-fertilisation and new ideas;
•    Scouting for technologies, in coordination with the Core Future Launchers Preparatory Programme and the Directorate of Technology, Engineering and Quality, and potentially with the assistance of consulting;
•    Providing appropriate support to the FLPP Beyond LEO Programme Manager;
•    Supporting STS-FL in developing the diversification of space transportation stakeholders through spin-in/spin-off with a view to strengthening the technology and demonstration roadmaps, as well as to achieving the programme objectives;
•    Maintaining and updating the STS-F technology sourcing database;
•    Supporting FIRST! (open competition calls for technology disruptors maturation) and contracting events;
•    Drafting and presenting papers at space conferences:
•    Supporting the periodic consultation of the network of experts in the Directorate of Technology, Engineering and Quality;
•    Providing quarterly written reports to STS-FL on your activity.


You will be assisted by project control, contracts, legal and quality staff and supported by engineers from the Directorate of Technology, Engineering and Quality, as well as from national agencies within the FLPP Technical Assistance scheme.

Technical competencies

Good knowledge of and experience with Space Transportation and Spacecrafts
Multi-disciplinary knowledge of Space, ideally with a capability in fluid mechanics applied to launcher, in space transportation and orbital transfer vehicle (including orbital propellant depot)
Knowledge of design, development and application of relevant tools and methods for flight vehicle engineering
Knowledge of Launcher, In-orbit transportation systems and Orbital transfer Vehicles technologies, and in a large extent on space logistics
Experience in Technology maturation projects
Knowledge of industrial costs and schedule aspects
Space Transportation system development and PA standards
Complex project risk management processes
Knowledge of other technical domains with interfaces to own area of responsibility
Ability to interact with European Space industry
Knowledge of ESA and industrial development, verification and procurement processes

Behavioural competencies

•    Result Orientation 
•    Operational Efficiency 
•    Fostering Cooperation 
•    Relationship Management 
•    Continuous Improvement 
•    Forward Thinking


A master’s in space transportation is required, preferably in project implementation and system engineering, with a thorough knowledge of the overall space transportation sector, the New Space environment and space transportation innovation processes.

Additional requirements

•    Knowledge of the European and global space transportation sectors including industry;
•    Technical knowledge of space transportation systems and innovative technologies;
•    Competence in establishing technology roadmaps and technology maturation projects, and experience of academic and public/private space transportation R&D would be an asset;
•    Knowledge of technical domains and related R&D trends in industry;
•    Demonstrated project technical lead experience;
•    Demonstrated negotiating skills;
•    Experience in motivating and developing a multidisciplinary team including non-ESA staff and trainees;
•    The ability to manage multiple team locations would be an asset for the position;
•    The ability to work autonomously in an international environment, anticipate problems and reach solution-oriented, pragmatic and timely decisions of a high standard and integrity as well as the capacity to support others (team members, upper management and other stakeholders) in this process.

Other information

For behavioural competencies expected from ESA staff in general, please refer to the ESA Competency Framework.

For further information please visit: Professionals, What we offer and FAQ   


The working languages of the Agency are English and French. A good knowledge of one of these is required. Knowledge of another Member State language would be an asset.     

Applicants must be eligible to access technology and hardware which is subject to European and US export control regulations.

The Agency may require applicants to undergo selection tests.


At the Agency we value diversity and we welcome people with disabilities.  Whenever possible, we seek to accommodate individuals with disabilities by providing the necessary support at the workplace.  The Human Resources Department can also provide assistance during the recruitment process. If you would like to discuss this further please contact us email


Please note that applications are only considered from nationals of one of the following States: Austria, Belgium, the Czech Republic, Denmark, Estonia, Finland, France, Germany, Greece, Hungary, Ireland, Italy, Luxembourg, the Netherlands, Norway, Poland, Portugal, Romania, Spain, Sweden, Switzerland, the United Kingdom and Canada, Latvia, Lithuania, Slovakia and Slovenia.


According to the ESA Convention, the recruitment of staff must take into account an adequate distribution of posts among nationals of the ESA Member States*. When short-listing for an interview, priority will first be given to internal candidates and secondly to external candidates from under-represented Member States*.  


In accordance with the European Space Agency’s security procedures and as part of the selection process, successful candidates will be required to undergo basic screening before appointment conducted by an external background screening service. 


In principle, recruitment will be within the advertised grade band (A2-A4). However, if the selected candidate has less than four years of relevant professional experience following the completion of the master’s degree, the position may be filled at A1 level. 

*Member States, Associate Members or Cooperating States.