Fluid Component Engineer II

Fluid Component Engineer II

companyRocket Lab
locationLong Beach, CA, USA
PublishedPublished: 5/11/2024
Full Time


Rocket Lab is a global leader in launch and space systems. The rockets and satellites we build and launch enable some of the most ambitious and vital space missions globally, supporting scientific exploration, Earth observation and missions to combat climate change, national security, and exciting new technology demonstrations. Our Electron rocket has provided reliable access to orbit since 2018, becoming one of the most frequently launched rockets in the world. Neutron will be our next rocket on the launch pad, an advanced 13-tonne payload class, reusable rocket to launch the mega constellations of the future. Our space systems business includes our extensive line of satellites and components that have enabled more than 1,700 missions including the James Webb Space Telescope, NASA Psyche Mission, Artemis I, Mars Ingenuity helicopter, and more.  

Join our pioneering team and launch your career to new heights!


Neutron is a medium lift launch vehicle capable of delivering the mega constellations of tomorrow, high assurance payloads, and human spaceflight. As a highly reusable launch platform, Neutron will deliver a highly cost-effective and reliable launch solution leveraging Rocket Lab’s proven execution history with the Electron program. 


The Fluid Component Engineer IIplays a key role in the design, build and test of fluid components across the Neutron launch vehicle, including valves, actuators and regulators. You will collaborate with an amazing team of engineers in the Fluid Systems department to turn vehicle-level requirements into a family of fluid components that enable Neutron to operate with aircraft-like reusability and reliability.


  • Own fluid component designs from concept through launch 
  • Create and maintain analytical models to size new components from first principles and predict sealing, force balance, structural and timing behavior 
  • Create and maintain component product definition through CAD models, technical drawings, and test procedures 
  • Lead key component design, manufacturing and test reviews 
  • Manage vendor and internal schedules during design, build and test sprints 
  • Hands-on building and testing of prototype components collaborating with machinists, build technicians, manufacturing and test engineers 
  • Lead root cause failure investigations of hardware and implement design fixes to achieve reliability 
  • Update existing component designs to address critical failure modes while reducing cost, and mass and increasing build rate 
  • Review data from engine and vehicle test operations to validate component performance and diagnose anomalies 


  • Bachelor’s degree in mechanical engineering or aerospace engineering 
  • 2+ years of experience with mechanical design and assembly, CAD, Finite Element Analysis (FEA), 2D drawings, geometric dimensioning and tolerancing (GD&T) 
  • Strong first-principles engineering knowledge to establish and challenge requirements and develop optimized designs 
  • Knowledge of metal and polymer material properties, fabrication, fastening, assembly and testing methods 
  • Strong engineering fundamentals in structural analysis, fluid dynamics, thermodynamics and electromechanical systems 
  • Demonstrated ability to bring definition to complex design problems in a fast-paced environment with information available 
  • Hands-on experience with prototyping, mechanical assembly and pressure testing  


  • 5+ years experience of aerospace valve specific design, build and test  
  • Experience with cryogenic oxygen & methane components and combustion devices 
  • Experience using fluids analysis tools such as REFPROP and GFSSP 
  • Experience using Siemens NX 
  • Experience using Python 
  • Experience with precision CNC machining (mill and lathe) and CAM 


  • Specific vision abilities required by this job include close vision, distance vision, peripheral vision, depth perception, and the ability to focus.   
  • Regularly required to sit, use hands and fingers, operate computer keyboard and controls, and communicate verbally and in writing.  
  • Must be physically able to commute to buildings 
  • Occasional exposure to dust, fumes and moderate levels of noise. 

The expected salary range for the position is displayed in accordance with the California Equal Pay for Equal Work Act. Final agreed upon compensation is based upon individual qualifications and experience. 

Base salary is only one part of Rocket Lab’s compensation package for this role. You may be eligible for company stock, stock options, or cash incentives, and can purchase discounted stock through Rocket Lab’s Employee Stock Purchase Program. Employee benefits may also include medical, dental, and vision insurance coverage; 401(k) retirement plan options; paid vacation, holidays, and sick leave; paid parental leave; and other discounts and perks.  

Base Pay Range (CA Only)$87,300—$109,100 USD


We’re on a mission to unlock the potential of space to improve life on Earth, but that’s not an easy task. It takes hard work, determination, relentless innovation, teamwork, grit, and an unwavering commitment to achieving what others often deem impossible. Our people out-think, out-work and out-pace. We pride ourselves on having each other’s backs, checking our egos at the door, and rolling up our sleeves on all tasks big and small. We thrive under pressure, work to tight deadlines, and our focus is always on how we can deliver, rather than dwelling on the challenges that stand in the way.   

Important information:


To conform to U.S. Government space technology export regulations, including the International Traffic in Arms Regulations (ITAR), Rocket Lab Employees must be a U.S. citizen, lawful U.S. permanent resident (i.e., current Green Card holder), or lawfully admitted into the U.S. as a refugee or granted asylum, or be eligible to obtain the required authorizations from the U.S. Department of State and/or the U.S. Department of Commerce, as applicable. Learn more about ITAR here.

Rocket Lab provides equal employment opportunities to all employees and applicants for employment 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. This policy applies to all terms and conditions of employment at Rocket Lab, including recruiting, hiring, placement, promotion, termination, layoff, recall, transfer, leaves of absence, compensation and training.

Applicants requiring a reasonable accommodation for the application/interview process for a job in the United States should contact Giulia Biow at g.biow@rocketlabusa.com.This dedicated resource is intended solely to assist job seekers with disabilities whose disability prevents them from being able to apply/interview. Only messages left for this purpose will be considered. A response to your request may take up to two business days.


For security reasons background checks will be undertaken prior to any employment offers being made to an applicant.  These checks will include nationality checks as it is a requirement of this position that you be eligible to access equipment and data regulated by the United States' International Traffic in Arms Regulations. 

Under these Regulations, you may be ineligible for this role if you do not hold citizenship of Australia, Japan, New Zealand, Switzerland, the European Union or a country that is part of NATO, or if you hold ineligible dual citizenship or nationality.  For more information on these Regulations, click here ITAR Regulations.