Mission System Architect



Arlington, VA, USA
Posted on Tuesday, June 20, 2023

Umbra builds next-generation space systems that observe the Earth in unprecedented fidelity.

Our mission: Deliver global omniscience.

To stay ahead of climate change, geopolitical risk, and other major crises, we need a global understanding of what is changing, where, and how fast. Umbra is built around the idea that by providing easy access to the highest quality commercial satellite data available, we can become an indispensable tool for the growing number of organizations monitoring the Earth. We empower our customers with the ability to create the solutions that inform, inspire, and address our planet’s most pressing needs. We’re helping to create a brand new industry that has never meaningfully existed before. To make our vision a reality, we're gonna need some help.

We are looking for a Mission Architect, focused on mission, payload and product development to support Umbra’s Government Programs department. This leader will be responsible for the development of solutions, products and technology which meet current and future U.S. Government needs. The Architect will be responsible for developing new mission solutions as well as to explore applications of Umbra’s current and planned on-orbit capabilities. The Architect will collaborate closely with Umbra’s Space Systems and Software departments. This person is an innovator with a brilliant technical mind, adaptable to new fields of study and willing and able to tackle hard problems with sound first-principles approaches.

Key Responsibilities

  • Lead the development of integrated space and ground solutions concepts leveraging Umbra's current and future technology, maturing into the pursuit of Government-directed missions.
  • Perform mission systems engineering, performance analysis, and use case analysis of conceptual designs and architectural solutions for current and potential customers.
  • Support the Director of Mission Architecture to develop a robust Modeling and Simulation capability to inform the architecture, development, and evolution of Umbra's space-based systems.
  • Support Umbra Government Programs capture activities as a key technical contributor, author and reviewer on formal responses.
  • Travel will be required approximately 25% between Umbra facilities in California, Washington D.C., and Austin, TX as well as to partner and customer facilities.

Basic Qualifications

  • Demonstrated ability to conceive and mature the architecture and design of space-based ISR systems and end-to-end solution to meet current and emerging needs.
  • Experience with first order design concepts, CONOPs development, and performance estimation.
  • Strong leadership ability, proven to drive the maturity of new concepts into white papers, solicitation responses, and R&D efforts within organizations.
  • Understanding of existing commercial and National ISR collection systems and how Umbra will contribute to the future architecture
  • Strong interpersonal ability, able to interact effectively with customer and Umbra staff.
  • A sound understanding of mathematics, with a technical degree in engineering, computer science, mathematics, or physics.
  • At least 6+ years experience with space-based mission system design, development and/or operations.
  • Comfortable working in a dynamic and fast-paced development environment.
  • Current TS/SCI clearance

Desired Qualifications

  • Extensive experience working with U.S. Government DoD, IC and Civil customers; specifically the NRO and its mission partners.
  • Extensive experience with SAR, RF, and other remote sensing payloads space payloads.
  • Experience with modeling, scripting and analysis software such as MATLAB, Python, STK, and CST Studio Suite.


  • Flexible Vacation / Paid Time Off / Paid Family Leave
  • Medical, Dental, Vision, Life, LTD, Vol Life
  • 401(k) Plan with 3% non-elective employer contribution
  • Stock Options


  • Santa Barbara, CA
  • Washington, D.C.
  • Austin, TX

Umbra is an Equal Opportunity Employer that is committed to inclusion and diversity. We take affirmative action to ensure equal opportunity for all applicants without regard to race, color, religion, sex, sexual orientation, gender identity, national origin, disability, Veteran status, or other legally protected characteristics.

Employment Eligibility Verification:

In compliance with federal laws, all hired persons will be required to verify their identity and eligibility to work in the United States by completing the required Employment Eligibility Verification Form (I-9 Form) upon hire.

ITAR/EAR Requirements:

This position may include access to technology and/or data that is subject to U.S. export controls pursuant to ITAR and EAR. To comply with federal export controls, all persons hired must be a U.S. citizen, U.S. national, U.S. lawful permanent resident, refugee or asylee as defined by 8 U.S.C. § 1324b(a)(3), or must otherwise be eligible to obtain the required authorizations from the U.S. Department of State and/or U.S.Department of Commerce as applicable.

Pay Transparency:
This job posting may span more than one career level. To provide greater transparency to candidates, we share base ranges for all job postings regardless of state. We set standard base pay ranges for all roles based on function and level benchmarked against similar stage growth companies. Final offer amounts are determined by skills, responsibilities and relevant work experience.