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Optical Modeling/Simulation Engineer

Job ID: 2307871
Location: AURORA, CO, United States
Date Posted: Aug 25, 2023
Category: Engineering and Sciences
Subcategory: Specialty Engr
Schedule: Full-time
Shift: Day Job
Travel: Yes, 10 % of the Time
Minimum Clearance Required: TS/SCI with Poly
Clearance Level Must Be Able to Obtain: TS/SCI with Poly
Potential for Remote Work: No Remote
Benefits: Click here

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Job Description


JOB DESCRIPTION: SAIC is seeking an Optical Modeling and Simulation Engineer to join the National Security and Space Sector (NSS). You would work on a joint Intelligence Community (IC) and Department of Defense (DoD) crown jewel program providing highly specialized space/counter-space engineering, scientific, and analytical services from Aurora, Colorado. We support the Nation’s leading-edge IC and DoD space programs and offer compelling, deep-technical work that has direct influence and impact on program development and operations. Our team has Subject Matter Experts (SMEs) across a variety of disciplines, including physics, math, RF, optics, space acquisition and operations, and intelligence collection and analysis.

This Optical Modeling and Simulation Engineer will work in a collaborative team-focused environment of U.S. Government civilians and contractors solving applied technical problems and developing usable solutions for multiple space-related capabilities and threats. The ideal candidate will:

·        Have experience generating new satellite models or adapting existing mission partner models for on-orbit simulation scenarios

·        Be fluent with the synthesis and application of space object optical signatures, electro-optical (EO) sensor models, and lighting and environmental effects to simulate the space object detection, feature discrimination, and/or characterization by space domain awareness (SDA) systems

·        Be able to design, develop, and quantify results for satellite simulations that accurately represent the system state and have familiarity with post-processing techniques of optical sensor data that extract additional insights or translate the data into operationally relevant information

·        Possess knowledge of optical systems and their use in SDA

Duties and responsibilities include:

·        Designing and editing satellite models and optical simulations to inform analyses and trade studies related to operational scenarios

·        Developing estimates of space object optical signatures using physics-based methods or via similarity to existing data

·        Simulating SDA data of space objects that represent the sensor system’s spatial, spectral, and other capabilities under representative seeing conditions

·        Quantifying impacts and sensitivity to changes in Concepts of Operations (CONOPS), scenarios and/or threats

·        Developing and briefing analytical results for stand-alone and broader assessment products

·        Achieving detailed understanding of multiple satellite systems, designs, operations, and classifications in order to make design or CONOPS recommendations

·        Developing and maintaining in-depth knowledge of U.S. and Foreign SDA optical capabilities

·        Frequently interacting with program managers, SETAs, FFRDCs and external stakeholders

·       Developing productive relationships with the Program Office, Prime, and Subcontract counterparts, functional IC or DoD counterparts and other SMEs




·       Minimum of a bachelor’s degree in Engineering, Physics, Mathematics or Computer Science and 4 or more years of demonstrated modeling and simulation or space science experience

·        Active TS/SCI Clearance with Special Access eligibility and consent to a Counter Intelligence (CI) polygraph. US Citizenship is required

·        Experience using simulation software such as COAST/FIST, TASAT, SVST or similar

·        Experience with CAD software capable of editing and creating models (.nsm, STEP)

·        Proficiency with analytical programming language, such as MATLAB or Python or similar

·        Strong communication skills (technical writing, presentation development, team and customer interactions, etc.)

·        Demonstrated problem solving and critical thinking in complex and dynamic organizational environments

·        Ability to work effectively in team-based environment, including critical review of work products

·        Self-starter able to effectively accomplish assigned tasks with limited direction

Strongly Desired Skills:

·        Master’s Degree in Engineering, Physics, Mathematics, or Computer Science

·        Experience with C, Linux, and Systems Tool Kit (STK)  

·        Working knowledge of optical SDA technologies

Target salary range: $150,001 - $175,000. The estimate displayed represents the typical salary range for this position based on experience and other factors.

Covid Policy: SAIC does not require COVID-19 vaccinations or boosters. Customer site vaccination requirements must be followed when work is performed at a customer site.


SAIC® is a premier Fortune 500® technology integrator driving our nation's technology transformation. Our robust portfolio of offerings across the defense, space, civilian, and intelligence markets includes secure high-end solutions in engineering, digital, artificial intelligence and mission solutions. Using our expertise and understanding of existing and emerging technologies, we integrate the best components from our own portfolio and our partner ecosystem to deliver innovative, effective and efficient solutions that are critical to achieving our customers' missions.

We are approximately 24,000 strong; driven by mission, united by purpose, and inspired by opportunities. SAIC is an Equal Opportunity Employer, fostering a culture of diversity, equity, and inclusion, which is core to our values and important to attract and retain exceptional talent. Headquartered in Reston, Virginia, SAIC has annual revenues of approximately $6.9 billion. For more information, visit For ongoing news, please visit our newsroom.

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