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Space Systems Security R&D Engineer

MIT Lincoln Laboratory

MIT Lincoln Laboratory

Lexington, MA, USA
Posted on Thursday, April 11, 2024

We live in a time in which you have a choice – a choice where to work, where to apply your talents and ideas, where to grow and look for self-fulfillment.

We, the members of the Secure, Resilient Systems and Technology Group at MIT Lincoln Laboratory, have made our choice. We share a common passion for helping solve some of the hardest technical problems relevant to National security. We pursue innovative, high-impact, practical research in small, focused teams. We succeed by participating in all R&D phases, including problem analysis and innovative solution design, system architecture, rapid prototyping and field-testing, and ultimately in transfer of our technology to national security operations and Industry. Being part of MIT, we also collaborate closely with academia and publish our research in top-tier venues. Our work has important real-world impact.

If you would like to pursue your passion for cutting-edge research and work on things that truly matter at a place that combines problems of pressing national importance with MIT’s culture of academic excellence, abundance of resources, and superior work-life balance, apply here to learn more.

Job Description

Our space systems cyber-resiliency team brings together multi-disciplinary scientists and engineers to understand cyber threats to space systems and conduct foundational research in secure-by-design safety-critical systems. As a member of this team, you will help conceive, design, prototype, and transition cyber-resiliency technologies to critical space domain operational partners such as the DoD, Intelligence Community, and NASA. Your contributions and ideas will fly on orbit-demonstrators, and act as pathfinders toward exciting new capabilities for securing space systems. Your role won’t be limited to the Laboratory alone. It will extend into engagement with the larger national security space community, where your insights will advise in creating military and civil space systems that can operate through and recover from concerted cyberattack by nation-state actors.

Cybersecurity does not exist in a vacuum. It is intimately tied to the mission systems that an adversary seeks to hold at risk. Your expertise, whether in aerospace, electrical engineering, computer science, or another related field, can help unite cyber-resiliency research with the physical constraints and operational realities of space systems. This is why we consider diversity of expertise one of our greatest strengths. As part of this diverse team, you will have the opportunity to expand your technical breadth and depth by working with talented staff from many academic backgrounds.

As a space systems security engineer, you will be a highly valued member of our team. You will be responsible for architecting and prototyping new technologies on small project teams, helping in their hands-on implementation, and building testbed infrastructures to validate them. You will work across teams to promote a cooperative and inclusive culture. You will also contribute to the larger community through open academic publications and engagement with government sponsors.


  • Master’s degree in Software Engineering, Electrical Engineering, Aerospace/Astronautic Engineering, Computer Science, or related field
    • In lieu of a Master’s, a Bachelor’s degree with 3 or more years of relevant experience will be considered.
  • Academic or professional system prototyping experience and/or publications in the areas of space systems architectures, space system design, systems cybersecurity, applied cryptography, or related focus areas.
  • Architecture, analysis, design, implementation, and testing/verification of space systems, or security technologies.
  • The ability to excel with limited oversight and a passion to convert vision into reality
  • Effective communication skills and an eagerness to help mentor other staff members
  • Self-motivated individual enthusiastic to work in an interdisciplinary environment and broaden their technical experience


A wide range of backgrounds are applicable, including:

  • Space system design, implementation, and operation. Familiarity with the design and CONOPs of existing civil and military space systems.
  • Flight (or other relevant control) software internals. Design and implementation of modular flight software and middleware such as NASA cFS.
  • Embedded systems engineering. Design and development of embedded systems (FPGAs, system-on-chip, IP cores, soft-cores); VHDL.x
  • System security engineering. Threat modeling and security requirements analysis.
  • Software engineering and design and development in Rust and C/C++; Familiarity with secure programming and the software development lifecycle, including design, documentation, and testing.
  • Real-time operating system internals, especially micro-kernel approaches for least-privilege operations. Experience with seL4.

At MIT Lincoln Laboratory, our exceptional career opportunities include many outstanding benefits to help you stay healthy, feel supported, and enjoy a fulfilling work-life balance. Benefits offered to employees include:

  • Comprehensive health, dental, and vision plans
  • MIT-funded pension
  • Matching 401K
  • Paid leave (including vacation, sick, parental, military, etc.)
  • Tuition reimbursement and continuing education programs
  • Mentorship programs
  • A range of work-life balance options
  • ... and much more!

Please visit our Benefits page for more information. As an employee of MIT, you can also take advantage of other voluntary benefits, discounts and perks.

Selected candidate will be subject to a pre-employment background investigation and must be able to obtain and maintain a Secret level DoD security clearance.

MIT Lincoln Laboratory is an Equal Employment Opportunity (EEO) employer. All qualified applicants will receive consideration for employment and will not be discriminated against on the basis of race, color, religion, sex, sexual orientation, gender identity, national origin, age, veteran status, disability status, or genetic information; U.S. citizenship is required.

Requisition ID: 41062