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Principal NDE Level III - RT (Radiography)

Company: Space Exploration Technologies
Location: Hawthorne
Posted on: May 3, 2021

Job Description:

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 Principal NDE Level III - RT position at SpaceX sits within the Materials Engineering & NDE technical development team and reports to the NDE Director. As a Principal NDE Level III at SpaceX you will be required to lead the group of RT Specialists and Engineers to interface across the business covering most predominantly our Hawthorne headquarters and primary manufacturing facility but also supporting our Texas test facility as well as our launch sites at Cape Canaveral, Vandenberg, and Boca Chica.

The primary function of this role is to develop and deliver the best inspection solutions possible. The role must interface between the initial R&D, engineering, production and the wider build reliability teams to develop and select the appropriate technologies, specifications, processes, procedures and people to support targets and goals, such as increased probability of detection, reduced cycle time, right first time manufacture / assembly, and indication/defect reduction. Principle technical understanding of a range of NDE methodologies and a wide industry knowledge of best practices, tools, equipment and procedures are needed to ensure we have the best possible solutions deployed to maintain compliance and ensure our launch vehicles maintain reliability and performance for our customers.

To be successful, you will need:

  • A deep technical and practical knowledge of NDE processes and standards
  • The ability to multitask, from developing technologies, project managing and training people throughout the introduction of multiple production solutions from inception in the R&D world
  • The capability to succinctly communicate status and needed action, often urgently, to all levels of the organization
  • A deep understanding of contracts and control documents for guaranteeing compliance and compliance processes
  • Strong technical expertise, the ability to learn new concepts quickly and apply them
  • Soft skills such as strong team leadership, influencing and persuading, a key eye for detail and the ability to work within complex teams to reach company-wide goals
  • Help to identify new technologies and improved process that could benefit SpaceX's mission that could be implemented internally


  • Build relationships with cross-functional groups to understand supply base needs
  • Review and understand supplier issues, recommending appropriate actions
  • Lead the R&D department in development for operational improvement and optimization
  • Technology Development:
  • Systems & tooling selection
  • Market research and investigation
  • System testing and trials
  • System evaluation and qualification including probability of detection studies
  • Process Development:
  • Method process documentation
  • Part specific technique development, testing, documentation & deployment
  • Engineering drawing interpretation and engineering specifications
  • Production Technical Support:
  • System level production maintenance & support definition
  • Production cell technical oversight: trouble shooting, complex problem solving
  • Continuous improvement: method accuracy, process efficiency, reliability and speed
  • Technician Qualification and Certification:
  • Method training framework definition
  • Class room training selection
  • Written tests; practical exams; and administration of general & specific tests


  • Current NAS NDE Level III certification in RT
  • 5+ years of NDE experience at Level II adhering to NAS 410 / ASNT standards
  • 2+ years of NDE experience as Level III adhering to ASNT standards


  • 7+ years' experience in non-destructive testing/evaluation, engineering, production, and quality
  • Experience with quality systems (ISO 9000/AS9100/NADCAP)
  • Expertise interpreting 2D engineering drawings and model drawings
  • Knowledge of AMS, AWS / ASME, ASTM etc.
  • Bachelor's degree in engineering
  • Problem solving tools and techniques: Practical Problem Solving, 8D etc.
  • Basic computer skills: Microsoft office applications - Word, Power Point, Excel etc.
  • Good written, oral, and presentation skills
  • Knowledge of quality processes (approvals, quality planning, first article inspections, etc.)
  • Experience in advanced NDE methods such as: Digital RT, Computed RT, and CT
  • 5+ years of aerospace experience especially experience in the space launch business
  • Knowledge of NASA 5009 Standards


  • Position may involve long hours and weekend work as needed
  • Ability to travel - up to 10-15% work week travel is expected

ITAR Requirements:

  • To conform to U.S. Government space technology export regulations, including the International Traffic in Arms Regulations (ITAR) you must be a U.S. citizen, lawful permanent resident of the U.S., protected individual as defined by 8 U.S.C. 1324b(a)(3), or 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.

Keywords: Space Exploration Technologies, Hawthorne , Principal NDE Level III - RT (Radiography), Other , Hawthorne, California

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