Senior RF Test Engineer

Xona Space Systems
San Mateo, CA/Remote
Added: April 13, 2024

Interested in building a new generation of GNSS satellites at the speed of new space?

GNSS (GPS) creates upwards of $500B in economic value in the US every year, supporting everything from consumer applications, to transportation systems, to time sync for critical infrastructure. As these industries progress towards autonomy the performance and security demands of their navigation systems are increasing beyond what GNSS can support, leaving a need for a cost-effective global solution.

Using lessons we've learned at places like SpaceX and Blue Origin, Xona is constructing a modern satellite network at the rapid pace of the new space industry leveraging the recent wave of technology and regulatory advancements. Building on our patent pending small satellite architecture, we are developing a robust and accurate service that is an independent alternative to GNSS rather than a correction, solving the longstanding challenge of obtaining a reliable high accuracy solution from the very fragile GNSS signals. Our satellite system will provide the first ever high-accuracy global navigation and timing services with the security and resilience modern applications need to operate safely at scale.

At Xona you will develop state-of-the-art hardware and software solutions to solve real problems that can have a massive world impact. Xona is driven by the mission to enable modern devices to operate safely in any environment, anywhere on Earth, and unlock the true potential of the age of autonomy.

Primary responsibilities will include the scoping, planning, writing procedures, execution, and equipment IDing for RF focused testing. This includes both conducted and radiated RF tests revolving around the validating of the payload, RF board characterization, subsystem tests, transmit antenna as well as RF validation tests at the satellite level. You are expected to be able to perform power level calculations and create link budgets for these tests. This role will have the opportunity to weigh in on design reviews and provide feedback on verification and testability.

This role will be critical for the testing and validation of any payload development and revisions for the production design. You will have the opportunity to provide input into requirements for the production bus platform and how the geometry and materials play into PIM, multipaction, and interference.


  • Bachelor of Science degree in EE, CS, or equivalent; 5+ years of relevant experience
  • To comply with U.S. Government space technology export regulations, applicant must be a U.S. citizen, lawful permanent resident of the United States (i.e. Green Card holder), or other protected individual as defined by 8 U.S.C. 1324b(a)(3).
  • Located in the Bay Area to work in the lab

Desired Qualifications:

  • Ability to create harnesses
  • General knowledge of spacecraft based RF systems
  • Experience taking measurements on RF and mixed-signal devices with standard test equipment
  • (Oscilloscopes, Spectrum Analyzers, Signal generation, VNA, Python based instrument control)
  • Experience with RF board characterization
  • Analyze/Process test data and provide recommendations for improvements
  • Participate in design reviews and provide input on testability
  • Experience planning and executing conducted and radiated emissions tests
  • Knowledge of high power RF transmit systems and test setups
  • Knowledge of PIM causes, effects, and mitigations
  • Knowledge of multipaction causes, effects, and mitigations
  • Experience planning, organizing, and executing RF tests at the bench top level, in various levels of anechoic environments, and outdoors
  • Experience putting together RF test setups for communications and/or navigation systems
  • Be able to clearly write and document test plans, proposals, and procedures
  • Be able to distill out test requirements and metrics as part of test campaign development
  • Adhere to safety and quality standards
  • Resourcefulness
  • Team player
  • Attention to detail and accuracy
  • General lab handiness
  • Excellent problem-solving and troubleshooting skills