Loon is on a mission to connect people everywhere by inventing and integrating audacious technology. A network of balloons traveling on the edge of space, Loon combines advancements in materials science, atmospheric modeling, machine learning, and communications systems to expand connectivity to unserved and underserved areas around the world. Loon is one of the newest independent companies within Alphabet.
Thermal Mechanical engineering on stratospheric balloons is a rare problem with an odd combination of heat transfer modes and continually varying or unknown boundary conditions. This person will be a key engineer within the Loon Mechanical Engineering department; they will own the technical solutions to thermal mechanical challenges on stratospheric vehicles, and collaborate extensively with a cross-functional team of diverse engineers. The ideal candidate will be a self-starter that thrives on design freedom, is comfortable with ambiguity, and enjoys conceptualizing, designing, prototyping, and testing hardware with a small dynamic team.
- Thermal/mechanical design of complex flying stratospheric components as well as ground station components through CFD modeling, direct calculations, and rules of thumb
- Design and verification of mechanical assemblies that maintain compliance with operational requirements over a wide thermal range
- Evaluation of performance and troubleshooting of existing designs
- Validating CFD models in lab environments as well as under flight conditions
- Optimization of system architectures for thermal design and power consumption
- Interface with software, systems, electrical and reliability engineering teams to determine optimal operating points in harsh environments.
- Bachelor of Science (or higher) in Mechanical Engineering with 5+ years professional work experience as a mechanical designer
- Experience with Solidworks and CFD software such as Flotherm/Icepak
- Very solid fundamentals in heat transfer and fluid mechanics - you will be solving problems that have little documentation from real-world examples and that few have experience with
- Experience with thermal measurements and characterization in the lab, thermal interface materials, and radiation-based heat transfer problems
- MS in mechanical engineering and 5 years of experience in electronics or aerospace thermal design
- Experience with mechanical design for very low temperatures and hands-on experience with environmental testing infrastructure (e.g. thermal chambers, shake tables etc.)
- Data analysis skills in Matlab or comparable software
- CFD skills in Star-CCM+ or comparable advanced software
- Experience with heat transfer devices such as heat pipes, thermoelectric devices, liquid cooling, and thermosyphons
- Knowledge of insulation techniques and strategies
- Hands on practical experience with designing agile, light-weight, and compact electro-mechanical mechanisms; experience with electro-mechanical sensor and actuator selection and sizing