System Engineer

Noordwijk, The Netherlands, ESA [10071]

Field(s) of expertise
Project and Service Management Space Systems Engineering
Job type

About this job

The Laser Interferometer Space Antenna (LISA) was selected in 2017 by the Science Programme Committee for the Science Programme’s L3 launch opportunity.

As System Engineer, you would report to the Head of the Astrophysics and Fundamental Physics Missions Section (SCI-FMA) in the Mission Studies Division (SCI-FM), under the Future Missions Department (SCI-F), Directorate of Science. The Section works closely with the Instrument Studies Section (SCI-FIS) on payload-related aspects, and the Technology Preparation Section (SCI-FT) on technology development activities.


As System Engineer, you would handle all aspects of Mission System Studies (assessment/definition Phase 0/A/B1) for future astrophysics and fundamental physics science missions. Initially, you would be assigned to LISA.

The duties focus on (but are not limited to) the preparatory studies for future missions under ESA’s Science Programme. Your specific tasks would include:

  • Supporting LISA system engineering activities during the assessment/definition phase in close collaboration with the LISA Study Manager. This covers internal studies done by the Agency and the technical management of study contracts placed with European industry, including invitation- to-tender preparatory activities and the technical follow-up of industrial teams;
  • Interfacing as requested with relevant external bodies: LISA science study team (in liaison with the study scientist), specific technical working groups, ESOC and ESAC, payload study teams (LISA consortium) for payload definition, including industrial partners and LISA international partner technical teams;
  • Supporting the elaboration and execution of the LISA-related technology programme in partnership with the Technology Preparation Section, the Instrument Studies Section and the relevant Sections/Divisions in the Directorate of Technology, Engineering and Quality;
  • Contributing to technical and programmatic analysis (technical feasibility, cost and risk assessment) for future science missions and their payloads, with the focus being LISA;
  • Monitoring the developments of relevant astrophysics and fundamental physics missions within and outside the Agency for cross-fertilisation with the Future Missions Department activities;
  • Contributing to renewal of the Science Programme and related calls for themes and missions, including preparation of technical call information, proposal evaluation and conduct of phase 0 studies of selected candidates;
  • Contributing to generic section, office and department tasks as these arise (such as reporting, reviews, evaluations).


Technical competencies

  • Extensive experience in space mission studies or projects
  • System engineering and understanding of system requirements and interfaces (including payloads)
  • Management of industrial activities including reviews
  • Knowledge of cost estimation, including industrial costs and schedule aspects
  • Knowledge on astrophysics and fundamental physics missions
  • Good knowledge and understanding of physics

Behavioural competencies

  • Problem Solving
  • Innovation & Creativity
  • Results Orientation
  • Planning & Organisation
  • Communication
  • Teamwork


A PhD or Master’s degree in engineering or applied physics is required.

Additional requirements

You should demonstrate a good balance between interacting with ESA stakeholders, scientific institutions and industry. You should be self-motivated and systems oriented.

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