AOCS Engineer

  • Tokyo
  • Partial Remote
  • Full-time
  • May 31, 2024
Apply from Anywhere 👍
Relocation to Japan 👍
(Overseas visa sponsorship supported)
Language Requirements
Japanese: Not Required 👍
English: Business Level
Minimum Experience
Mid-level or above

Job description

We are looking for a talented and motivated new colleague to join Synspective's Onboard Software Team. Our team is responsible for the design, development, testing and maintenance of the embedded software running inside Synspective’s satellites. We are a small team where control engineers and embedded software engineers work closely together.

The Onboard Software Team is part of the Satellite System Development Dept. No1, which is responsible for the development of the satellite system.



Attitude and Orbit Control System (AOCS) design, analysis, implementation, testing and maintenance.


Details of work:

  • Design, implement, test, and validate algorithms used in the AOCS of Synspective's Synthetic Aperture Radar (SAR) satellites, such as: sensor data filtering, orbit and attitude estimation, attitude controller, reaction wheels and magnetorquer control, operation modes control, failsafe mechanisms, etc.
  • Work closely with the embedded software engineers to integrate the AOCS into the rest of the flight software.
  • Validate the design through unit testing, Model In the Loop Simulation (MILS), Hardware In the Loop Simulation (HILS), and tests on the physical satellite.
  • Assist the testing and validation of the AOCS components during the satellite Assembly Integration and Testing (AIT) process.
  • Model sensors, actuators, and other physical components in MATLAB/Simulink/Simscape and fit the component model using test data.
  • Take part in the launch campaign: prepare the necessary items for launch operation, monitor the behavior during the critical phase, and provide technical support to the satellite operation team.
  • Participate in weekly meetings and design reviews.

Selling points of the role:

  • Great opportunity for growth as an engineer.
  • See the complete lifecycle of a satellite, from the early design to the launch and in-orbit operation.
  • Work in an international team.


Job requirements

  • Bachelor’s degree in Aerospace Engineering, Control Engineering, Electrical Engineering, or Robotics Engineering. We will consider an equivalent combination of relevant education and/or experience.
  • At least 3 years of hands-on experience in the design and validation of control systems, preferably on autonomous systems (satellite, launch vehicle, drone, Unmanned Aerial Vehicle (UAV), self-driving car, robot, etc.).
  • Thorough understanding of multibody dynamics: coordinate transformation between reference frames, kinematics, conservation of energy and momentum, etc.
  • Strong analytical and communication skills.
  • Strong experience with MATLAB/Simulink.
  • Experience working with physical sensors and actuators.
  • Willingness to travel to Synspective's factory (Yamato-city) on business trips several times a year.

Preferred qualifications:

  • Knowledge of orbital mechanics and satellite dynamics.
  • Experience in the design, implementation and testing of spacecraft attitude and orbit control algorithms.
  • Experience in modeling physical components such as sensors and actuators in MATLAB/Simulink.
  • Experience in control law design, beyond classical techniques: non-linear design, optimal design.
  • Experience in state estimation using Kalman filtering and anomaly detection algorithms.
  • Experience in model identification.
  • Knowledge of GNC hardware components such as: reaction wheels, magnetorquers, GPS receivers, gyroscopes, star trackers.
  • Experience in modeling finite state machines in Stateflow.
  • Experience programming in C/C++.
  • Experience in generating C/C++ code from Simulink.

Synspective is a space start-up that provides business solutions based on data from satellites. Founded in 2018, they develop and operate their own synthetic aperture radar satellites.

While most start-ups in the Earth Observation sector are limited to one area such as data analytics or the development of satellite hardware, Synspective handles everything from developing satellites to data analytics to building solutions for clients based on this infrastructure.

With an emphasis on data, Synspective aims to become a true one-stop-shop player for solutions based on satellite data. With SAR satellites that apply the results of the Japanese Cabinet Office’s “ImPACT” program, Synspective’s goal is to create a platform capable of frequent data collection, and sell or use that data to offer solutions for government and business entities.

Synspective’s culture is defined by their concept of “Human Centered Design for Company”. They’re striving to build a strong organization that relies on the performance of each individual. To that end, they provide a flexible environment where specialists can work autonomously, empowering members to work whenever it enables them to do their best work.

Since the company is entering into a market that’s still developing, optimizing for the performance of each individual is essential for the success of the company’s business. They also want to support members in expressing their own ideas and hypothesis since they know that the satellite business still has many open questions.

Synspective is an organization full of highly-motivated specialists, so each full-time employee is on a 6-month contract. Members’ performance is evaluated every six months, and those who’ve made major contributions are rewarded for their effort. This also helps maintain an environment where everyone can work freely and independently among people focused on improvement and growth.

Synspective's policies during COVID-19 are as follows:

  • During COVID-19 all of their members are working from home. *They’ve opened up hiring for overseas candidates for a few positions.
  • Synspective was already working remotely before COVID-19 for most roles.
View Synspective's company page

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AOCS Engineer at Synspective