On-Board Computer and Data Systems Engineer (ESA-ESTEC)

Noordwijk, The Netherlands, Serco Europe [EDD933]

Field(s) of expertise
Telecommunications Engineering Electronics Engineering
Job type

About this job

Serco is a leading Space Services Provider with thousands of skilled resources that has supported over 50 space missions on behalf of more than 10 Space or Government agencies around the globe, including the ESA and NASA. Serco offers space capability across the full space lifecycle from satellite testing to Launch services, LEOP to spacecraft operations, space surveillance to data management, and supporting downstream application development. With over 55 years history in the space sector Serco is well placed to contribute to National strategies and New Space ventures who want to scale their businesses/organisations with skilled talent.

We are seeking an On-Board Computer and Data Systems Engineer to work on our Customers Site (ESA-ESTEC) in the Netherlands. This is a fantastic opportunity to get into one of the most sought after space agencies in the world.


The On-Board Computer & Data Handling Section provides functional support to ESA projects and carries out technological research (R&D) on turn-key on-board HW Data Handling solutions with an emphasis on:

  • platform and payload data handling architectures and their building blocks (equipment/units, modules and key components)
  • units such as on-board computers, mass memories, remote terminals, instrument control units
  • digital and analogue signal processing electronics for payload/platform control functions
  • front-end acquisition and processing chain electronics
  • on-board data transfer interfaces, buses and associated protocols (high and low speed)
  • platform data handling functions related to security, data authentication, encryption, compression, machine learning and artificial intelligence
  • use of microelectronics devices

(*except for RF payloads)
As On-Board Computer and Data Systems Engineer you will report to the Head of Section and, within the technical fields described above, the main tasks and responsibilities will include:

  • providing technical support to ESA projects, programmes and general studies in the field of platform and payload data handling systems throughout all project phases
  • participating in feasibility studies, project reviews and the evaluation of procurement proposals
  • identifying critical development problems and assisting in their resolution
  • defining, initiating and supporting R&D activities covering both long- and short-term needs
  • fostering new application areas for multidisciplinary activities, with an emphasis on innovative concepts, cutting-edge technologies and system architectures
  • laboratory activities, as required
  • monitoring applicable scientific and technological trends and maintaining state-of-the-art expertise
  • contributing to the dissemination of the results of the activities performed and the transfer of knowledge across the Agency


  • Master or PhD in electronics, networks, telecommunications or a related field is required
  • At least 5 years of professional experience in the fields of space hardware related to platform and payload data handling equipment (units, modules and boards). This includes the ability to design, review and simulate analogue and digital electronics for data handling units (use of FPGA/processors/micro-controllers, single-point-failure-free circuitry, failure containment techniques and use of COTS with radiation mitigation techniques)
  • Understanding of electrical satellite systems architectures
  • Deep knowledge of data handling functions and their implementation
  • Knowledge of CCSDS communication protocols and related standards
  • Extensive knowledge of intra-satellite communication protocols (Mil1553, CAN, SpaceWire)
  • Experience in equipment procurement, sub-systems integration and testing
  • Experience in spacecraft project support in particular related to spacecraft data handling, on-board data interfaces, associated protocols and system level validation
  • Ability to work in an autonomous manner, in particular when providing support to projects with high time allocations and this in coordination with the line manager


Knowledge in the following fields will be considered as asset:

  • Design and Use of Data Handling Electrical Ground Support Equipment (EGSE)
  • Design, validation and verification of AI/ML Processing Algorithm inferred on HW/SW platform(s)
  • Design of electronic boards for radiation testing of analogue and digital circuitry based on COTS
  • Comfortable with working in a diverse and multinational team environment
  • Excellent interpersonal skills are needed, together with a high degree organizational and communication abilities
  • Proficient in the English language, both written and spoken
  • Knowledge of another EU member state language is an asset
  • Candidates must be eligible to work in the EU.


What we offer:

  • Competitive Salary
  • Corporate Benefits Package
  • Support provided to EU Nationals requiring relocation – Information available upon request
  • Company events

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