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Young Graduate Trainee for System Engineering for Lunar Exploration

  • Organization: ESA - European Space Agency
  • Location:
  • Grade: F1 - Young Graduate Trainee - Junior level
  • Occupational Groups:
    • Engineering
    • Scientist and Researcher
    • Innovations for Sustainable Development
    • Civil Society and Local governance
  • Closing Date: 2019-12-15

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Young Graduate Traineeship Opportunity in the Directorate of Human & Robotic Exploration Programmes.

ESA is an equal opportunity employer, committed to achieving diversity within the workforce and creating an inclusive working environment. Applications from women are encouraged.

Young Graduate Trainee for System Engineering for Lunar Exploration

This post is classified F1.


ESTEC, Noordwijk, The Netherlands 

Our team and mission

The Lunar Lander Team is responsible for the implementation of cooperation between ESA and the Russian Space Agency (Roscosmos) on  lunar exploration. The objectives are to flight-prove technologies and capabilities for future exploration missions and to gain knowledge to plan safe, effective and efficient human exploration at the Moon. Within this cooperation framework, ESA will provide products and services to the upcoming Russian lunar robotic missions, particularly to a landing mission (planned in 2024-2025).

The European contributions encompass several elements: a precision and safe landing system (PILOT), a low-temperature drilling system together with a sample analysis instrument (PROSPECT), landing sites analyses and operations support.  Phase C of these elements will start in 2020 including detailed design, engineering models manufacturing and extensive testing in various facilities, contracted to European industry.

The Team is also supporting lunar payload activities for other robotic missions, feasibility studies of future lunar missions as well as related technological activities.

Candidates interested are encouraged to visit the ESA website:

Field(s) of activity

You will be assigned in support of the Lunar Lander Team. You will work principally in support of Phase C activities of the European PILOT element with a view to preparing the Critical Design Review. This includes support to technical activities coordinated between the Russian mission and the PILOT system, though analyses and simulations (shadow engineering) dealing with descent and landing problematics (including absolute and relative visual navigation, navigation filter, hazard detection and avoidance functions). This support will be based on existing tools to be further enhanced and adapted to the specific needs as arising during the refinement of design features.

An additional focus on mission and system aspects will be tailored, depending on the refined needs at the time and the capabilities of the selected individual.

Technical competencies
Knowledge of relevant technical domains
Relevant experience gained during internships/project work
Breadth of exposure coming from past and/or current research/activities
Knowledge of ESA and its programmes/projects
Behavioural competencies
Self Motivation
Continuous Learning
Cross-Cultural Sensitivity

You should have just completed, or be in the final year of a university course at Master's level (or equivalent) in a technical or scientific discipline.

Additional requirements

Knowledge in one or more of the following fields is mandatory: simulation environment (e.g. Matlab/Simulink), computer vision, navigation, computing electronics.

The working languages of the Agency are English and French. A good knowledge of one of these is required. Knowledge of another Member State language would be an asset.

You should have good communication skills, should show sense of initiative and should be able to work in a multi-cultural environment. You should demonstrate good interpersonal skills and the capacity to work both independently and as part of a team.

During the interview your motivation and overall professional perspective/career goals will also be explored.

Other information

For behavioural competencies expected from ESA staff in general, please refer to the ESA Competency Framework.

The closing date for applications is  15 December 2019.

If you require support with your application due to a disability, please email


Please note that applications are only considered from nationals of one of the following States: Austria, Belgium, the Czech Republic, Denmark, Estonia, Finland, France, Germany, Greece, Hungary, Ireland, Italy, Luxembourg, the Netherlands, Norway, Poland, Portugal, Romania, Spain, Sweden, Switzerland, and the United Kingdom. Nationals from Slovenia, as an Associate Member, or Canada as a Cooperating State, can apply as well as those from Bulgaria, Cyprus, Latvia, Lithuania and Slovakia as European Cooperating States (ECS).

Priority will first be given to candidates from under-represented Member States.

In accordance with the European Space Agency’s security procedures and as part of the selection process, successful candidates will be required to undergo basic screening before appointment

We do our best to provide you the most accurate info, but closing dates may be wrong on our site. Please check on the recruiting organization's page for the exact info. Candidates are responsible for complying with deadlines and are encouraged to submit applications well ahead.
Before applying, please make sure that you have read the requirements for the position and that you qualify.
Applications from non-qualifying applicants will most likely be discarded by the recruiting manager.

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