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Build Reliability Engineer (Starship)



Texas, USA
Posted on Saturday, June 1, 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.


The Build Reliability organization at SpaceX is an inclusive, interdisciplinary team that is committed to the reliability of flight components and production assemblies. Your breadth of exposure as a Starship Build Reliability Engineer will be immense as you collaborate with other core groups at SpaceX, guiding the hardware from design to production and operation. You use data to understand the factors that drive reliability and support quality initiatives with design and development teams to drive improvements in manufacturing, test, and flight reliability. You have the ability to dive deep into the details to identify, understand, and solve difficult technical problems and also utilize a system-level approach to prioritize issues for the Starship vehicle, spanning from primary structure build through final integration, test, and launch of the vehicle. You thrive in a hands-on environment and will spend time in the office, on the factory floor, and in the lab to execute the mission to make humankind a multi-planetary species.


  • Partner with design engineering and manufacturing teams through vehicle development to create quality plans for hardware, including identification of key characteristics, prototype testing for functionality and manufacturability, defining first article inspection requirements, and consideration of past failures and lessons learned
  • Collaborate with production to define and introduce controls and automation into specialized manufacturing processes and associated planning to reliably reduce post-process inspections and/or enable sample inspection plans
  • Contain suspect or known non-conforming product, providing guidance to quality inspectors, technicians, shop supervisors, and engineers to assist in quarantining and rework activities
  • Investigate failures in production, test, and flight, identifying and mitigating the immediate and underlying root causes in order to reduce risk and improve the reliability of designs and processes
  • Determine the appropriate Quality Management System requirements around traceability, non-conformance, and configuration management for the program and work with software teams to build and test the applications to enforce said requirements
  • Develop, implement, and validate Lean test and inspection processes for new and existing products and processes, ensuring that criteria are objective and that quality goals are consistently met
  • Confirm operational safety precautions are considered and identified per area planning standards
  • Perform measurement system analysis (MSA, Gage R&R) to validate inspection systems used for acceptance of development hardware.
  • Conduct regular build quality reviews to ensure that design intent is achieved and well-communicated; identify opportunities for risk reduction and removal of complexity in designs and processes to improve manufacturability, collaborating with integrated product teams to drive improvements and address high-impact and repeating non-conformances


  • Bachelor's degree in mechanical engineering, aerospace engineering, materials engineering, manufacturing engineering, chemical engineering, electrical engineering, or engineering physics
  • 1+ years in a manufacturing, quality, and/or design engineering role (student project team or internship experience qualifies)


  • Strong interpersonal and collaborative skills, enthusiasm for the team’s spirit of innovation and mission of improving reliability in cutting-edge technology
  • Master’s degree in mechanical engineering, aerospace engineering, materials engineering, or electrical engineering
  • Demonstrated application of process controls in high-volume manufacturing, test, and quality environment
  • Hands-on knowledge of CNC machining, additive manufacturing, casting, welding, fastening, or other special manufacturing processes
  • Experience with programmable logic controllers and standing-up data acquisition systems
  • Experience supporting the production of complex mechanical/structural assemblies
  • Knowledge of quality tools such as Lean principles, Six Sigma, root cause analysis and corrective action, advanced product quality planning (APQP), metrology, process failure mode and effects analysis (PFMEA), control plans, and various problem-solving approaches
  • Dedicated to adopting a Lean approach to quality without compromising safety or reliability


  • Ability to work extended hours, weekends, and offsite as needed


Pay range:

Build Reliability Engineer/Level I: $95,000.00 - $115,000.00/per year
Build Reliability Engineer/Level II: $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 and long-term disability insurance, life insurance, paid parental leave, and various other discounts and perks. You may also accrue 3 weeks of paid vacation and 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.