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Software Engineer

Darmstadt (Germany)

  • Organization: ESA - European Space Agency
  • Location: Darmstadt (Germany)
  • Grade: A2/A4 - Grade band - Mid level
  • Occupational Groups:
    • Engineering
    • Information Technology and Computer Science
  • Closing Date: 2021-01-31

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Vacancy in the Directorate of Operations.

ESA is an equal opportunity employer, committed to achieving diversity within the workforce and creating an inclusive working environment. For this purpose, we welcome applications from all qualified candidates irrespective of gender, sexual orientation, ethnicity, beliefs, age, disability or other characteristics. Applications from women are encouraged.


Software Engineer

This post is classified A2-A4 on the Coordinated Organisations’ salary scale.

ESOC, Darmstadt, Germany  


Software Engineer in the Software Backend Section, Ground Station Engineering Division, Ground Systems Engineering & Innovation Department, Directorate of Operations.


You will report to the Head of the Software Backend Section and will be responsible for the development and engineering activities related to space link communication software and ground station monitoring and control software, as well as ground station related planning and scheduling software. This role involves the following main tasks:

  • Requirement specification for the necessary functions to be supported by those systems, in collaboration with the operational users and the Ground Station and Control Centre engineering community;
  • Concept definition and design of those systems, based on modern software engineering methodologies and techniques for procurement activities;
  • Leading agile software development and software maintenance processes;
  • Acceptance of the deliverables received from industry, ensuring correctness, completeness and compliance to the applicable user needs and requirements;
  • Leading deployment and operational phase-in;
  • Definition and execution of study and technology developments to validate new concepts and/or to explore the spin-in of new information technology;
  • Contributing to standards in the area of space data systems and software; Engineering; managing industrial contracts for the above.

Technical competencies

Proven experience in the development of complex software systems, preferably in the ground segment for space missions

Excellent command of Java or C++

Knowledge of Continuous Integration and Continuous Delivery techniques and associated tools and processes

Behavioural competencies

Result Orientation

Operational Efficiency

Fostering Cooperation

Relationship Management

Continuous Improvement

Forward Thinking


A Master's degree in computer science, electrical engineering, physics, mathematics or another relevant domain.

Additional requirements

You are expected to have several years’ experience in software development, preferably in the field of ground segment for space missions. Experience in project management and or management of agile projects would be an asset. Your high motivation and your ability to define solutions and solve problems in an autonomous manner while communicating at the same time effectively within the project and the organisation is essential.

Other information

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

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.     

The Agency may require applicants to undergo selection tests.

The closing date for applications is 31 January 2021.

 At the Agency we value diversity and we welcome people with disabilities.  Whenever possible, we seek to accommodate individuals with disabilities by providing the necessary support at the workplace.  The Human Resources Department can also provide assistance during the recruitment process. If you would like to discuss this further please contact us at


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, the United Kingdom and Canada, Latvia and Slovenia.

According to the ESA Convention the recruitment of staff must take into account an adequate distribution of posts among nationals of the ESA Member States. When short-listing for an interview, priority will first be given to internal candidates and secondly to external 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. 

Recruitment will normally be at the first grade in the band (A2); however, if the candidate selected has little or no experience, the position may be filled at A1 level.

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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