Senior Mission Systems Engineer

Surrey Satellite Technology Ltd (SSTL)
Surrey, UK/Remote
Added: April 23, 2024

About SSTL: Considered the pioneers of the small satellite market, and with a heritage that spans over 40 years, SSTL prides itself in continual innovation and improvement of space technologies, products and services, as well as in delivering space missions for a broad array of applications, like high-resolution Earth Imaging, communications (including from the moon), science and navigation. Since 1981, SSTL has built and launched 71 satellites, including 7 constellations, and has a number of further satellites and payloads under contract. From the earliest study activities, to the subsystem manufacturing, to the assembly and test, to in-orbit operations, the whole spacecraft lifecycle is managed from SSTL’s Guildford headquarters. SSTL is active across the UK, ESA and global export markets.

This role: is an exciting opportunity to join the Systems team with responsibility to lead space missions from LEO to GEO and beyond. Engineers at SSTL have involvement on a mission from concept, through to AIT, launch, commissioning and operational life; a true cradle to grave experience, and will give you the chance to see your work in Space in a rapid timescale! The Systems Engineer role plays an essential part in leading other technical disciplines, to bring together quality and pragmatic solutions for innovative projects, whilst working within a great team environment.

Key Tasks

  • System level design of space and ground segments including requirements analysis, sensitivity analysis, mission analysis and design trade-offs.
  • System engineering throughout all project phases:
  • Requirements management and engineering;
  • Preliminary and critical design phase activities, including mission conops development;
  • System / subsystem level interfacing and trade-offs;
  • System assembly and integration;
  • Test planning, requirement verification testing, and system validation;
  • System commissioning and operations.
  • Perform cost, risk, schedule and performance trades.
  • Working with the Sales and Engineering teams in support of bid / tender activities to generate technical solutions for a variety of customers.
  • Lead / support technical studies for a variety of customers.
  • Review of technical work.
  • Mentoring of junior colleagues where necessary.
  • Understanding and improving relevant company standards and work practices.
  • Conduct customer-facing meetings and presentation at all project stages.
  • Preparation of project documentation and presentation materials to a high standard for all phases of the work.
  • Interfacing to internal and external customers.
  • Management of subcontractors as required.
  • Management of one or more project work packages.
  • Act as a technical focal point for SSTL Mission Products, maintaining all key system level information in relation to these Mission Products.

Previous Experience

  • Experience as a technical lead on a space mission project.
  • Experienced spacecraft Systems Engineer (ideally 5+ years’ experience).
  • Experience of designing space missions starting from end-user requirements (cradle-to-grave).
  • Experience of designing and analysing space and ground segments to the sub-system level.
  • Experience in requirements and verification management.
  • Ideally with experience of spacecraft level verification testing.
  • Ideally with system experience of in-orbit commissioning and associated spacecraft operations.

Qualifications Knowledge & Skills

  • Degree or equivalent in Engineering, Physics or Maths
  • Good working knowledge of orbit analysis, constellation configurations, RF link analysis, system budgets, operations, ground segment, space environment and satellite mechanical and electrical architectures
  • Good knowledge of a wide range of satellite applications, e.g. Earth observation, communications, navigation, science etc.
  • Good knowledge of requirements management
  • Good knowledge of FMECA and FDIR design
  • Excellent knowledge of MS Word, Excel and PowerPoint
  • Knowledge of MS Project or equivalent planning tool
  • Strong attention to detail
  • Excellent knowledge of STK and Matlab or equivalent analysis tools
  • Hands on familiarity with environmental testing (eg vibration and thermal vacuum tests)
  • Good knowledge of assembly and test methods for space flight equipment
  • Excellent technical writing and presentation skills
  • Flexible and adaptable to changing priorities
  • Results orientated, can-do approach
  • Pro-active and able to take initiative
  • Decision making and problem solving skills
  • Excellent inter-personal skills - both written and oral communications; ability to interface with customers and technical representatives
  • Good team working skills, together with the ability to influence others at all levels
  • Proven ability to deliver solutions under pressure and to tight timescales
  • Able to demonstrate company mindsets and behaviours; Be accountable, Drive & delivery, Communicate effectively, Self-manage effectively, Work as one team


SSTL prides itself on being a super flexible company. The role is based in our Head Office in Guildford but we fully support hybrid working and a range of flexible working options.


Our comprehensive benefits package includes; 32 days Holiday plus Bank Holidays, Pension Scheme with Life Assurance, Private Medical & International Travel Insurance, Annual Bonus Scheme, Share Incentive Plan, Enhanced Maternity, Paternity & Shared Parental Pay for new parents, High Street Discount Scheme and many more!

Visa Support

SSTL supports applications requiring a UK Skilled Worker Visa and sponsorship is available for this role.