Digital Design Engineer

Space Systems · Santa Barbara, California
Department Space Systems
Employment Type Full-Time
Minimum Experience Experienced

Umbra builds next-generation space systems that observe the Earth in unprecedented fidelity.

Our mission: Deliver global omniscience.

To stay ahead of climate change, geopolitical risk, and other major crises and issues, we need a global understanding of what is changing, where, and how fast. Umbra provides easy access to the highest quality commercial satellite data available, which is an indispensable tool for the growing number of organizations monitoring the Earth. We empower our customers to create the solutions that inform, inspire, and address our planet’s most pressing needs. We’re helping to create a brand new industry that has never meaningfully existed before. 

We are looking for a talented, mission-driven professional to work closely with a multidisciplinary engineering team as an FPGA Digital Designer (Space Systems), developing HDL based digital designs supporting next-generation space radar systems. The individual filling this position will collaborate with the electrical engineering team to develop, analyze, manufacture, and test microwave subsystems.

Key Responsibilities

  • Develop FPGA-based digital designs for radar, electronic warfare, and communications.
  • Work with electrical and systems engineers to integrate Xilinx SoC based hardware with high speed data converters and associated microwave transmitter and receiver chains.
  • Continuously collaborate with the payload engineering team to address mechanical, thermal and power subsystems and interfaces.
  • Rapidly develop prototypes and iteratively improve hardware and firmware.
  • Prepare engineering documentation, reports, and test plans.
  • Interface with vendors as the technical representative and subcontracts manager.

Basic Qualifications

  • Bachelor of Science in a relevant discipline such as computer engineering or electrical engineering.
  • Knowledge of foundational electrical engineering, computer architecture and digital design concepts.
  • 5+ years of relevant experience in digital design with FPGA and SoC devices.
  • Development experience with Xilinx devices and design suite, such as Vivado, SDK and Vitis.
  • Expertise in VHDL and/or Verilog.
  • Experience developing MCU and SoC software in the C/C++ programming language.
  • Working knowledge of modern FPGA architectures and external interfaces, including high speed converters, DDR RAM, and Solid State NAND and NOR based storage.
  • Familiarity with standard physical layers for digital communication (UART, SPI, LVDS).
  • Comfortable working in a dynamic and fast-paced development environment.

Desired Qualifications

  • Advanced degree in a relevant technical discipline.
  • Capable of creating Linux kernels to be deployed on Xilinx devices.
  • Knowledge of digital communication systems and modulations (QPSK, 8-PSK).
  • Experience developing FPGA based hardware for the space environment.
  • Experience with analog and RF circuit design from baseband through X-band.
  • Knowledge of a scripting language such as Python.
  • Knowledge of SystemVerilog is a plus.
  • Previous experience with spacecraft systems is a plus.


    • Flexible Time Off & Sick
    • Medical, Dental, Vision, Life, 401(k)
    • Stock Options

    In-Office Perks

    • Standing desks
    • Downtown HQ with Free Snacks & Drinks
    • Free Parking
    • Catered lunches

    Umbra is an Equal Opportunity Employer that is committed to inclusion and diversity. We take affirmative action to ensure equal opportunity for all applicants without regard to race, color, religion, sex, sexual orientation, gender identity, national origin, disability, Veteran status, or other legally protected characteristics.

    Employment Eligibility Verification:

    In compliance with federal laws, all hired persons will be required to verify their identity and eligibility to work in the United States by completing the required Employment Eligibility Verification Form (I-9 Form) upon hire.

    ITAR/EAR Requirements:

    This position may include access to technology and/or data that is subject to U.S. export controls pursuant to ITAR and EAR. To comply with federal export controls, all persons hired must be a U.S. citizen, U.S. national, U.S. lawful permanent resident, refugee or asylee as defined by 8 U.S.C. § 1324b(a)(3), or must otherwise be eligible to obtain the required authorizations from the U.S. Department of State and/or U.S.Department of Commerce as applicable.

    Thank You

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    • Location
      Santa Barbara, California
    • Department
      Space Systems
    • Employment Type
    • Minimum Experience