Mechanisms Engineer

Updated: about 2 months ago

ESTEC, Noordwijk, Netherlands  


Mechanisms Engineer in the Mechanisms Section, Structures, Mechanisms and Materials Division, Mechanical Department, Directorate of Technology, Engineering and Quality.

The Mechanisms Section provides functional support to ESA projects and carries out technological research (R&D) in the fields of space mechanisms, such as for deployment and pointing or hold-down and release, solar array drives and reaction wheels, tribology, pyrotechnics and space mechanical systems for satellites and launchers.


Your tasks and responsibilities will include:

  • providing technical expertise and consultancy to ESA projects, programmes and general studies in the field of Mechanisms throughout all project phases;
  • participating in feasibility studies, project reviews and evaluation of procurement proposals;
  • identifying critical development problems and assisting in their resolution, as well as assessing with mechanism development and verification test programmes;
  • contributing to the definition of technology development requirements and work plans for the Agency’s technology programmes;
  • defining, initiating and managing R&D activities covering both long- and short-term needs;
  • fostering new application areas for multidisciplinary activities, placing emphasis on innovative concepts, cutting-edge technologies and system architectures;
  • defining relevant infrastructure requirements in terms of testing, standards and numerical simulation;
  • participating in hands-on laboratory activities as required;
  • monitoring applicable scientific and technological trends and maintaining a state-of-the-art expertise;
  • disseminating the results of the activities performed and actively contributing to the transfer of knowledge across the Agency.

Your duties may also include performing other activities within your field of competence.

Technical competencies

General background and specific experience in the technical domains covered by the position

Experience in the development and verification of space hardware

Experience in the preparation of procurement activities for technology development and innovation (statements of work and proposal evaluation)

Project support experience in a relevant domain

Hands-on laboratory experience

Experience in the management and monitoring of industrial activities, including participation in reviews

Experience with Space Engineering Standards and their preparation and implementation

Behavioural competencies

Result Orientation
Operational Efficiency
Fostering Cooperation
Relationship Management
Continuous Improvement
Forward Thinking


A master’s degree in mechanical or aeronautical engineering is required.

Additional requirements

Experience with space mechanisms/mechanism building blocks and related subsystems is desirable, as is knowledge of space tribology.

Several years of experience in the design, development and testing of mechanisms for space or aeronautical applications will be considered an asset.

Knowledge of simulation software, such as MATLAB/Simulink®, CAD design tools, such as FreeCAD, or other more specialised software tools, for example NSYS Maxwell, COMSOL, ADAMS, LabVIEW, CABARET, RBS-DYN and OptiStruct, with particular emphasis on:
• time and frequency domain performance representation and analysis;
• multi-body system modelling and simulation;
• design, including topology optimisation, and FEM analysis of compliant mechanisms;
• electromagnetic system modelling and simulation;
• multiphysics modelling and simulation;
• ball bearing loading/strength and stiffness analysis;
• test data acquisition and post-processing.

Diversity, Equity and Inclusiveness 
ESA is an equal opportunity employer, committed to achieving diversity within the workforce and creating an inclusive working environment. We therefore welcome applications from all qualified candidates irrespective of gender, sexual orientation, ethnicity, beliefs, age, disability or other characteristics. Applications from women are encouraged.

At the Agency we value diversity, and we welcome people with disabilities.  Whenever possible, we seek to accommodate individuals with disabilities by providing the necessary support at the workplace.  The Human Resources Department can also provide assistance during the recruitment process. If you would like to discuss this further, please contact us via email at [email protected] .

Important Information and Disclaimer
Recruitment will normally be at the first grade in the band (A2); however, if the candidate selected has little or no experience, the position may be filled at A1 level.

Applicants must be eligible to access technology and hardware which is subject to European and US export control regulations & security clearance by their national security administrations.

During the recruitment process, the Agency may request applicants to undergo selection tests. Additionally, successful candidates will need to undergo basic screening before appointment, which will be conducted by an external background screening service, in compliance with the European Space Agency's security procedures.

Note that ESA is in the process of transitioning to a Matrix setup, which could lead to organisational changes affecting this position.

The information published on ESA’s careers website regarding working conditions is correct at the time of publication. It is not intended to be exhaustive and may not address all questions you would have. 

Nationality and Languages 
Please note that applications can only be considered from nationals of one of the following States: Austria, Belgium, the Czech Republic, Denmark, Estonia, Finland, France, Germany, Greece, Hungary, Ireland, Italy, Luxembourg, the Netherlands, Norway, Poland, Portugal, Romania, Spain, Sweden, Switzerland, the United Kingdom and Canada, Latvia, Lithuania, Slovakia and Slovenia. 

When short-listing for an interview, priority will first be given to internal candidates.

The working languages of the Agency are English and French. A good knowledge of one of these is required. Knowledge of another Member State language would be an asset.  

Similar Positions