Do you want to change the world? Zipline uses drones to deliver critical and lifesaving medicine to thousands of hospitals serving millions of people in multiple countries. Our mission is to provide every human on Earth with instant access to vital medical supplies. Join Zipline and help us make this a reality for billions of people.About You and The Role
Zipline thrives on finding elegant solutions to complex problems, given what exists today and what we can develop to maturity quickly and confidently. We stay close to our customers, learn what really works, and find where we can put the leverage to make a big difference for them now. In Guidance, Navigation, Controls, and Dynamics, this means we have to learn to fly differently and build novel solutions in house to enable the kind of quality and responsiveness we need. We’ve flown and recovered our small aircraft through every storm in Rwanda and Ghana for years, and learning to survive and deliver through such difficult circumstances, while keeping the team size small and efficient, is what excites us.
The GNC&D team is looking for a Dynamics Engineer to join the team to focus on modeling and improving Snap Catch, our ground-based system used to automatically recover our aircraft. This system is dynamically intense and mission-critical -- if it fails, all our returning aircraft won’t be able to land. We’re only at the beginning of the modeling and controls improvements necessary to achieve the level of reliability we’ll need as we ramp up operations. In this role, you will work closely with the software, hardware, and electrical engineering teams along with flight and test operations teams. You will generate cross-functional buy-in for your proposed solutions and will present your work to Zipline’s team of engineers from around the world. Most importantly, your role in modeling and improving the design of the system will be crucial to the long term mission success of our aircraft.
Your primary responsibility will be to improve the reliability and performance of the Snap Catch recovery system through the use of high-fidelity dynamic modeling, simulation, and controls development. Snap Catch is a flexible and mechanically complex system, so your first task will be to develop a model using a combination of structural first principles and hardware test data. With the higher fidelity simulation, you’ll develop analyses to investigate root causes of system failure modes and work with a multidisciplinary team to identify and implement improvements.
You will also be responsible for increasing the performance of our recovery system controller, either through improvements to the current design or proposing a new design. You will demonstrate your design through a mixture of theoretical analysis, Monte Carlo simulation, and tests on representative operational hardware.What You'll Bring
- Experience working with complex dynamical systems, preferably working with flexible structures such as satellite solar panels, helicopter rotors, or multibody mechanical systems
- Expertise in high-fidelity dynamic modeling of mechanical systems for use in simulation
- Hands-on experience developing control software for electromechanical systems, preferably from scratch
- Excellent applied mathematical fundamentals in linear algebra, statics, and probability
- Software engineering skills, preferably working with both embedded software (C, C++, etc) and technical computing languages/packages (MATLAB, NumPy, Julia, etc.)
- Experience designing, conducting, and analyzing tests for large-scale hardware
- A balanced approach to theoretical, simulation, and hardware test analysis in order to demonstrate your designs
- A track record of shipping real products that meet stakeholder needs
- The ability to thrive in a fast-paced environment with changing external conditions (regulations, business necessities)
- A self-motivated attitude, with the ability to manage your own responsibilities in an unstructured work environment
- Excellent technical communication skills to collaborate with other teams and stakeholders and to give quality feedback for continual product and processes improvement
What Else You Need To Know
Zipline is an equal opportunity employer and prohibits discrimination and harassment of any type without regard to race, color, religion, age, sex, national origin, disability status, genetics, protected veteran status, sexual orientation, gender identity or expression, or any other characteristic protected by federal, state or local laws or our own sensibilities.
We value diversity at Zipline and welcome applications from those who are traditionally underrepresented in tech. If you like the sound of this position but are not sure if you are the perfect fit, please apply!