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Flight Test Engineer

Palmdale, California

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General Atomics pioneers technologies with the potential to change the world. Behind a talented global team of engineers, GA delivers safe, sustainable, and economical solutions to meet growing global demands. Our Engineers have an opportunity to work on first of a kind product lines within an incredible, dynamic environment.

Engineering positions typically require a bachelor’s degree, master’s degree or PhD in engineering or a related technical discipline from an accredited institution and progressive engineering experience. Candidates from mechanical, electrical, and aerospace engineering backgrounds must know the fundamentals of engineering system developments, requirements, testing, and integration before getting to the final stages of customer interface and project management.

  • Schedule: Full-Time Salary

  • Job Level: Mid-Level (3-7 years)

  • Travel: 0 - 25

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Success Profile

What makes a successful Flight Test Engineer at General Atomics? Check out the top traits we’re looking for and see if you have the right mix.

  • Analytical
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  • Team Player
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Date posted 07/03/2024 Job ID 45458BR Company General Atomics Aeronautical Systems Experience Level Mid-Level (3-7 years) Job Title Flight Test Engineer City Palmdale State California Workstyle Onsite Full-Time/Part-Time Full-Time Salary Salary Range $98,100 - $171,398

Job Summary General Atomics Aeronautical Systems, Inc. (GA-ASI), an affiliate of General Atomics, is a world leader in proven, reliable remotely piloted aircraft and tactical reconnaissance radars, as well as advanced high-resolution surveillance systems.

Located at our Flight Operation Facility in Palmdale, CA, this Flight Test Engineer position specializes in Flight Test Coordination of Developmental Test and evaluation of emerging airframe, software, hardware, and payload capabilities. Working directly with a broad spectrum of System Design Engineers, Test & Evaluation pilots, and System Test & Qualification Engineers, this person shall independently perform technical reviews and safety analysis on test plans, flight test run cards and first article design packages. As manager of the Flight Test safety process for the Vice President of Flight Operations, this person shall chair the Developmental Test Safety Review Board to ensure risks and hazards are properly mitigated and monitor flight test results to ensure adherence to test plans and sound test methodology in a dynamic environment. Other duties include participation on Software Design Review Boards, Test Readiness Review Boards, and Test Director Certification Board.

  • Provides centralized coordination and communication with flight test team members and subject matter expert design engineers in preparation for flight test.
  • Conducts technical reviews of flight test plans for sound test techniques, and provides safety analysis of risks, hazards, and mitigation strategies.
  • Coordinate and reviews test points and run cards with senior level aircrew for the safe execution of flight test maneuvers, with special emphasis on performance and flying qualities of stability control systems and autopilot systems.
  • Represents Flight Operations on various boards to include software design and changes, levels of test readiness such as preliminary design, final design, ground test and flight test, certification board for test directors, both basic and performance and flying qualities.
  • Author, compile technical documents and memorandums, and provide verbal counsel to the Vice President of Flight Operations advising on safety aspects of flight test risks and mitigations.
  • Complete appropriate and relative company training courses for flight operations and test director to gain appropriate system knowledge required to fulfil primary duties.
  • Perform the duties of Test Director for a multi-disciplinary test team when required.
  • Represents Flight Operations in a technical advisor capacity as needs dictate.
  • Maintains the strict confidentiality of sensitive information.
  • Responsible for observing all laws, regulations, and other applicable obligations wherever and whenever business is conducted on behalf of the Company.
  • Expected to work in a safe manner in accordance with established operating procedures and practices.
  • Performs other duties as assigned.
We recognize and appreciate the value and contributions of individuals with diverse backgrounds and experiences and welcome all qualified individuals to apply.
Job Qualifications:
  • Typically requires a bachelor’s degree, master’s degree or PhD in engineering or a related technical discipline from an accredited institution and progressive engineering experience as follows; six or more years of experience with a bachelor’s degree, four or more years of experience with a master’s degree, or two or more years with a PhD. May substitute equivalent engineering experience in lieu of education.
  • Experience working as a Flight Test Engineer or Test Director on fixed wing aircraft. Desired experience to include test and evaluation of stability control systems, autopilots systems and performance and flying qualities. Unmanned Air Vehicle/System flight test experience preferred.
  • Experience with creation, writing, review and execution of detailed test plans, test reports, analysis of flight test data and failure analysis reports.
  • Must possess the ability to understand new concepts quickly and apply them accurately throughout an evolving environment; strong communication, presentation, and interpersonal skills to effectively interface with other test team members.
  • Demonstrates a detailed and extensive technical expertise and application of engineering principles, concepts, theory, and practice with the ability to organize, plan, schedule, conduct, and coordinate workloads to meet established deadlines or milestones with some experience in project leadership.
  • Must be customer focused and able to work on a self- initiated basis or in a team environment and able to work extended hours and travel as required.
  • Must be self-directed and operate with minimal to no supervision.
  • Must possess good verbal and written communication skills in the English language.
  • Possession of a Private Pilot license is highly desirable.
  • Must be able to obtain and maintain a DoD Secret security clearance.

Salary:$98,100 - $171,398
Travel Percentage Required 0 - 25 Relocation Assistance Provided Provided US Citizenship Required? Yes Clearance Required? Desired Clearance Level Secret
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  • Healthcare

  • Pension, 401(k)/Retirement Plans

  • Competitive Pay

  • Multiple product lines means a variety of work

  • Paid Time Off

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Image of Peter, Senior Staff Engineer
“The company is growing, has a very good reputation and had open positions in my area of expertise (aircraft design/design methodology development).”
– Peter, Senior Staff Engineer
Image of Debra, CSSBB: Staff Engineer
“We don't ascribe to quotas; we do ascribe to securing the BEST talent to enrich our culture toward healthy diversification and active/viable community service. We are STEM advocates.”
– Debra, CSSBB: Staff Engineer
Image of Scott, Laser Scientist
“Every day is different, with different problems to solve and many programs to support. I am a problem solver and have always been motivated by the tough questions.”
– Scott, Laser Scientist
Image of John, Staff Engineer
“I work in the Components Engineering and Obsolescence Management Dept. Our efforts are saving General Atomics several millions of dollars by proactively leading and informing the company of all these decisions which significantly impact production, sustainment and new designs.”
– John, Staff Engineer

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