Composites Manufacturing Engineer, Supply Chain (Dragon & Falcon)



hawthorne, ca, usa
Posted on Saturday, February 3, 2024

SpaceX was founded under the belief that a future where humanity is out exploring the stars is fundamentally more exciting than one where we are not. Today SpaceX is actively developing the technologies to make this possible, with the ultimate goal of enabling human life on Mars.


SpaceX demands a new type of supply chain. We require our suppliers to provide premium quality with rapidly evolving designs at increasingly ambitious volumes. We are actively looking for candidates who possess comprehensive knowledge of manufacturing and quality tools and have unrelenting motivation to enable suppliers for success. This position that will support our Dragon and Falcon programs requires a combination of proven leadership and technical capabilities.

This is a highly technical position that requires practical experience in process engineering and new product development through stabilized production for structural composite components and assemblies. The ideal candidate will have a broad understanding of composite processing methods (out-of-autoclave and autoclave cured hand layup, structural bonding, honeycomb core processing) and secondary processing of composite structures (machining and drilling, surface preparation, fastening). The desire and motivation to take on new challenges and lead cross-functional teams is a must. Success in this role will require strong communication skills, engineering intuition and best practices, and the ability to self-manage multiple project and competing priorities.


  • Drive technical product improvements and related engineering drawing updates to reduce risk and potential defects, and find opportunities to improve manufacturability, manufacturing lead-times, and cost
  • Deliver results as measured by key metrics such as part yield, cost, defect rate, etc.
  • Review defects on assigned parts and solve to the root cause, implementing changes at the supplier, at SpaceX, or both, to drive further actions to closure, and re-source to new suppliers where appropriate
  • Review and assess supplier manufacturing processes and quality systems. Provide feedback, as appropriate, on manufacturing methods and technologies. Manage supplier improvement plans and probations
  • Own the New Product Introduction (NPI) process at suppliers for new parts, drawing changes, or when re-sourcing existing parts to a new supplier
  • Research external market information and entrepreneurial companies to identify potential new sources and suppliers
  • Develop supplier strategies that will deliver high quality, on-time delivered, and appropriately priced parts
  • Collaborate with teams, lead projects and continuously drive improvement in the supply base
  • Define process parameters and criteria to ensure supplier process capability is effective to meet product and process requirements
  • Audit and on-board new suppliers as required to meet company manifest


  • Completed bachelor’s degree in an engineering field
  • Minimum of 1 year of experience with manufacturing and/or inspection of composite structures in a production environment


  • Experience with manufacturing of spacecraft, aircraft structures or thermal protective systems
  • Experience developing and troubleshooting composite manufacturing processes including out-of-autoclave and autoclave cured structures
  • Experience with composite ply pattern software (NX FiberSIM or similar) and optical laser projection systems
  • Experience with non-destructive testing techniques for non-metallic structures
  • Familiarity with ASTM standards for composite structures
  • Knowledge of supplier quality processes (Production Part Approval Process, Advanced Product Quality Planning, First Article Inspection Reports, etc.)
  • Experience with quality systems (ISO 9000/TS/AS9100)
  • Disciplined approach to problem solving - 8D
  • Geometric dimensioning and tolerancing (GD&T) experience
  • Knowledge of lean concepts
  • Knowledge of statistical techniques and methods (Minitab, design of experiments, Six Sigma, etc.)
  • Pareto analysis, root cause and corrective action experience. Experience performing PFMEAs
  • Experience with sharing information and influencing others (strong written and verbal communication skills, able to liaise cross functionally, internally and externally, make presentations to team members and management)
  • Proficient in MS Office applications and report writing
  • Experience with 3D modeling/CAD software, and engineering drawing creation


  • Position requires long hours and some nights and weekends when required.
  • Ability to travel - up to 60-75% work week travel is required, valid driver’s license mandatory.


Pay Range:
Supply Chain Engineer/Level 1: $95,000.00 - $115,000.00/per year
Supply Chain Engineer/Level 2: $110,000.00 - $130,000.00/per year

Your actual level and base salary will be determined on a case-by-case basis and may vary based on the following considerations: job-related knowledge and skills, education, and experience.

Base salary is just one part of your total rewards package at SpaceX. You may also be eligible for long-term incentives, in the form of company stock, stock options, or long-term cash awards, as well as potential discretionary bonuses and the ability to purchase additional stock at a discount through an Employee Stock Purchase Plan. You will also receive access to comprehensive medical, vision, and dental coverage, access to a 401(k) retirement plan, short & long-term disability insurance, life insurance, paid parental leave, and various other discounts and perks. You may also accrue 3 weeks of paid vacation & will be eligible for 10 or more paid holidays per year. Exempt employees are eligible for 5 days of sick leave per year.


  • To conform to U.S. Government export regulations, applicant must be a (i) U.S. citizen or national, (ii) U.S. lawful, permanent resident (aka green card holder), (iii) Refugee under 8 U.S.C. § 1157, or (iv) Asylee under 8 U.S.C. § 1158, or be eligible to obtain the required authorizations from the U.S. Department of State. Learn more about the ITAR here.

SpaceX is an Equal Opportunity Employer; employment with SpaceX is governed on the basis of merit, competence and qualifications and will not be influenced in any manner by race, color, religion, gender, national origin/ethnicity, veteran status, disability status, age, sexual orientation, gender identity, marital status, mental or physical disability or any other legally protected status.

Applicants wishing to view a copy of SpaceX’s Affirmative Action Plan for veterans and individuals with disabilities, or applicants requiring reasonable accommodation to the application/interview process should notify the Human Resources Department at (310) 363-6000.