Job Details

University of California, Berkeley
  • Position Number: 4693028
  • Location: Berkeley, CA
  • Position Type: Engineering - Aerospace

COSI Payload Systems Engineer / Payload Manager Aerospace Manager 1 (5620U), Space Sciences Laboratory - 60052
About Berkeley

At the University of California, Berkeley, we are committed to creating a community that fosters equity of experience and opportunity, and ensures that students, faculty, and staff of all backgrounds feel safe, welcome and included. Our culture of openness, freedom and belonging make it a special place for students, faculty and staff.

The University of California, Berkeley, is one of the world's leading institutions of higher education, distinguished by its combination of internationally recognized academic and research excellence; the transformative opportunity it provides to a large and diverse student body; its public mission and commitment to equity and social justice; and its roots in the California experience, animated by such values as innovation, questioning the status quo, and respect for the environment and nature. Since its founding in 1868, Berkeley has fueled a perpetual renaissance, generating unparalleled intellectual, economic and social value in California, the United States and the world.

We are looking for equity-minded applicants who represent the full diversity of California and who demonstrate a sensitivity to and understanding of the diverse academic, socioeconomic, cultural, disability, gender identity, sexual orientation, and ethnic backgrounds present in our community. When you join the team at Berkeley, you can expect to be part of an inclusive, innovative and equity-focused community that approaches higher education as a matter of social justice that requires broad collaboration among faculty, staff, students and community partners. In deciding whether to apply for a position at Berkeley, you are strongly encouraged to consider whether your values align with our Guiding Values and Principles, our Principles of Community, and our Strategic Plan.

At UC Berkeley, we believe that learning is a fundamental part of working, and our goal is for everyone on the Berkeley campus to feel supported and equipped to realize their full potential. We actively support this by providing all of our staff employees with at least 80 hours (10 days) of paid time per year to engage in professional development activities. To find out more about how you can grow your career at UC Berkeley, visit

Departmental Overview

The Space Sciences Laboratory (SSL) is an Organized Research Unit (ORU) of the Berkeley campus reporting to the Vice Chancellor for Research. SSL's primary goal is to foster research in space-related sciences and to provide education for the next generation of space scientists. Research at SSL, led by Berkeley faculty and SSL Senior Fellows, focuses on experiments and observations carried out in space as well as theoretical and basic research.

The Role

We are looking for a Payload Systems Engineer or Payload Manager to join the team that is responsible for the instrumentation for the Compton Spectrometer and Imager (COSI) mission. The successful candidate will oversee the development of the COSI instrument that will launch in 2027. The COSI project is led by SSL and will be NASA's next major gamma-ray observatory. COSI will provide an all-sky gamma-ray map to advance our understanding of creation and destruction of matter in our galaxy and beyond. COSI detects gamma-rays using cryogenically-cooled germanium detectors surrounded by active shields for background reduction. Candidates with expertise in any aerospace engineering specialty and Systems or Management experience are encouraged to apply. The role requires interfacing with engineers at SSL and at partner institutions and representing the project to NASA during meetings and reviews. Excellent interpersonal skills are as equally important as technical abilities to lead the development of an exciting payload alongside a committed team.

Application Review Date

The First Review Date for this job is: October 20, 2023

  • Leads the Payload Systems Engineering effort as Payload SE or Payload Manager to deliver a gamma-ray spectrometer on NASA Explorer-Class mission, COSI.
  • Works with the COSI Principal Investigator, Project Manager and Project Systems Engineer to manage the COSI instrument.
  • Develops the design of the COSI instrumentation and oversees fabrication, test and plans for operation in space.
  • Leads weekly meetings and technical interchange meetings (TIMs) to organize the technical effort.
  • Leads failure reviews and works with the team to implement recovery plans.
  • Secures and coordinates trained staff and facilities.
  • Develops and manages component subcontracts.
  • Develops complete work plan and budget; monitors cost and schedule performance for COSI instrument.
  • Coordinates component and system-level design reviews.
  • Provides technical reports to NASA related to the COSI instrument.
  • Ensures all contract deliverables are met for the COSI instrument.
  • Makes decisions to balance risk across technical, schedule, and cost aspects of the instrument.
  • Interacts directly with the customer (NASA); prepares and gives presentations regarding Instrument capabilities and development status.

Required Qualifications
  • Thorough skills in spacecraft development projects.
  • Thorough knowledge and skills in management and engineering specialty(ies).
  • Excellent skills in leading the technical design and development of a space project.

Education / Training Requirements
  • Doctorate or advanced degree with significant post-graduate work in related field or equivalent experience.

Salary & Benefits

For information on the comprehensive benefits package offered by the University, please visit the University of California's Compensation & Benefits website.

Under California law, the University of California, Berkeley is required to provide a reasonable estimate of the compensation range for this role and should not offer a salary outside of the range posted in this job announcement. This range takes into account the wide range of factors that are considered in making compensation decisions including but not limited to experience, skills, knowledge, abilities, education, licensure and certifications, analysis of internal equity, and other business and organizational needs. It is not typical for an individual to be offered a salary at or near the top of the range for a position. Salary offers are determined based on final candidate qualifications and experience.

The full pay scale for this position is $146,200.00-$291,600.00. The budgeted salary range that the University reasonably expects to pay for this position is $160,000.00-$250,000.00.
  • This is a full-time (40 hours/week), career position, and eligible for full UC benefits.
  • This is an exempt, monthly paid position.
  • The annual salary is commensurate with experience within the budgeted range.

How to Apply

To apply, please submit your resume and cover letter.

Diversity Statement

Please include, as part of your application a brief (1-2 paragraph) statement on your contributions to diversity, equity, inclusion, and belonging in your professional experience.

Advancing diversity, equity, and inclusion are fundamental to our UC Berkeley Principles of Community, which states that "every member of the UC Berkeley community has a role in sustaining a safe, caring, and humane environment in which these values can thrive."

Conviction History Background

This is a designated position requiring fingerprinting and a background check due to the nature of the job responsibilities. Berkeley does hire people with conviction histories and reviews information received in the context of the job responsibilities. The University reserves the right to make employment contingent upon successful completion of the background check.

Equal Employment Opportunity

The University of California is an Equal Opportunity/Affirmative Action Employer. All qualified applicants will receive consideration for employment without regard to race, color, religion, sex, sexual orientation, gender identity, national origin, disability, or protected veteran status. For more information about your rights as an applicant, please see the U.S. Equal Employment Opportunity Commission poster.

For the complete University of California nondiscrimination and affirmative action policy, please see the University of California Discrimination, Harassment, and Affirmative Action in the Workplace policy.

To apply, visit

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