National Aeronautics and Space Administration Senior Researcher, Airbreathing Propulsion Computational Analysis in Cleveland, Ohio

  • Duties



The incumbent serves as Senior Researcher for Airbreathing Propulsion Computational Analysis at Glenn Research Center (GRC). The incumbent provides and applies his/her technical expertise in the field of airbreathing propulsion, one of GRC's core competencies, and computational analysis. Additionally, the incumbent provides technical leadership and oversight of the development and application of airbreathing propulsion computational fluid dynamics applications supporting NASA's aeropropulsion projects.

This is a permanent position assigned to Glenn Research Center, however, the selectee receives a temporary promotion/appointment and serves for a period of 3 to 5 years. Upon conclusion of the temporary promotion, the selectee will then return to an appropriate position at the parent or other NASA Center at a grade level no lower than the grade previously held. This temporary promotion or term appointment may be converted to a permanent appointment without further competition. Please refer to the "How You Will Be Evaluated" section for additional application instructions.

The initial appointment will be for 3 years, with the possibility of extending up to an additional 2 years. If selectee is currently a permanent NASA civil service employee, he or she will receive a temporary promotion. Then the employee will return to a position at a grade level no lower than the grade previously held.

If selectee is on a nonpermanent civil service appointment, a permanent civil service appointment in another Agency, or is not currently on a civil service appointment, he or she will receive a term appointment NTE 3 years.

This appointment may be made permanent without further competition.

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The incumbent is an internationally recognized expert in the field of airbreathing propulsion computational analysis. The incumbent serves as the Center's expert in airbreathing propulsion computational fluid dynamics (CFD) analysis; and provides leadership and oversight in the development and application of air breathing propulsion CFD to support NASA’s aeropropulsion projects. The incumbent serves as a member of the Research and Engineering Directorate’s Propulsion Division technical advisory staff, and serves as an expert advisor to senior-level management; and leads the Division’s working group on computational analysis and tools extending across a number of different propulsion technical disciplines. In this role, the incumbent also represents NASA’s propulsion CFD and interdisciplinary analysis capabilities in collaborations with other NASA centers, industry, academia, and other government laboratories. The incumbent conducts research and assists and advises other organizations in the development of a broad range of technologies using state-of-the-art fluid dynamic and aerothermodynamic computational analyses, including the development and assessment of numerical schemes capable of accommodating large flow property gradients, compressibility, strong shock waves, viscous effects, and fluid-thermal and fluid-structure interactions.

The technical problems in this field are exceptionally difficult and too complex for quick investigation and solution. They require new, unconventional or novel approaches and complex research techniques. Assignments focus on the application of the incumbent’s expertise in airbreathing propulsion and CFD and design optimization at both the component and system level with varying fidelity levels using advanced algorithms and efficient strategies. This expertise is critical for application in advanced architectures of propulsion and airframe concepts that represent major contributions in meeting the long-term goals of Agency projects. Additionally, the development of multidisciplinary design and optimization is critical in supporting the Agency’s continued leadership role in aeronautics and space research. The advanced engine and airframe architectures envisioned for long-term aviation needs involve highly integrated and unconventional propulsion systems. These require analysis and design tools that are much different from those today and necessitate much more multi-component and multidisciplinary analysis, as well as design optimization capabilities. These tools may need completely different algorithms and data structure strategies to accurately simulate complex flow phenomena. The results may include: a major technical advancement or lead to extensive related development efforts; progress in areas of exceptional interest to the scientific and professional community; important changes in theories, methods, and techniques and/or opening a significant new avenue for further study and contributions which answer important questions in this field.

The incumbent provides technical guidance and mentors a diverse group of both junior and senior-level engineers. This position requires an extremely high level of technical expertise and a comprehensive working knowledge in airbreathing propulsion and CFD.

Supervisory status


Promotion Potential


Who May Apply
This job is open to…

U.S. citizens and U.S. nationals

Questions? This job is open to 1 group.

  • #### Job family (Series)

0861 Aerospace Engineering

  • Requirements


Conditions of Employment
  • Position subject to pre-employment background investigation
  • Selectee must complete a financial disclosure statement
  • Occasional travel may be required

You must meet qualifications requirements by the closing date of this announcement.


Candidates must possess expert knowledge and at least 3 years of specialized experience in airbreathing propulsion computational analysis. At least 1 year of this experience must have been in planning and executing difficult programs of national significance or planning and executing specialized programs that show outstanding attainments in the field of research or consultation. At least 1 year of the specialized experience must be at least equivalent to experience at the GS-15 level.


Candidates must possess an engineering degree, preferably an advanced degree from an accredited engineering curriculum at an accredited college or university in a closely related engineering discipline.

Additional information

All qualified candidates will be referred to a panel of subject matter experts for further evaluation against the NASA SL or ST Evaluation Criteria as stated in the How You Will Be Evaluated section. Experience in these criteria MUST be addressed within the NASA-provided online form. Refer to the How to Apply section for complete instructions.

As a condition of employment, male applicants born after December 31, 1959, must certify that they have registered with the Selective Service System, or are exempt from having to do so under the Selective Service Law. In order to receive preference in hiring, you must clearly identify your claim for veterans preference on your resume.

Your USAJOBS account asks you to assign a name to each of your resumes. When you apply to a NASA position, we will show you the text of the resume you have submitted, but we do not maintain the name you have assigned to that resume. If you wish to keep track of that information, we recommend you make note of it at the time you apply.

U.S. citizenship is required.

Qualified NASA term employees who have term conversion eligibility under the NASA Flexibility Act of 2004 will be referred and considered equally with other NASA permanent employees under internal competitive placement procedures.

Relocation expenses may be paid consistent with NASA's policy.

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How You Will Be Evaluated

You will be evaluated for this job based on how well you meet the qualifications above.

All candidates will be referred to a panel of subject matter experts for further evaluation against the NASA ST Evaluation Criteria as stated in the NASA ST Evaluation Criteria section below. Experience in these criteria MUST be addressed within the NASA-provided online form. Refer to the How to Apply section for complete instructions. We strongly recommend you complete your answers to these five criteria off-line in a text document in advance of beginning the application process, so that you can insert them into the electronic form. Incomplete applications are not saved.

NASA ST Evaluation Criteria

  1. Education Level and Training. In addition to degree information, please include your pattern of continuing development to maintain currency and level of skills.

  2. Technical Excellence and Contributions. Please include a. through c. below in your response. Include the impact on key Center and relevant NASA/Agency and national programs. a. Experience/Accomplishments b. Technical Problem Solving c. Publications and Information Transfer

  3. Awards and Recognition. This criterion includes recognition of your accomplishments by peers in the broad scientific and/or engineering community and customers.

  4. Outside Professional Activities.

  5. Corporate Cooperation and Technical Leadership Skills. Included in this criterion are leadership skills in directing or participating in technical team activities, as well as coordinating those activities within and outside the Center. Also included are coaching/mentoring and diversity and inclusion.

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Background checks and security clearance
Security clearance

Not Applicable

  • Required Documents


Required Documents

NASA's application process has been specifically developed to ensure that we only ask you for the information we absolutely need to evaluate your qualifications and eligibility. In order to apply for this position, you only need to submit your resume and answer the screening questions and supplemental information. No additional documentation is accepted at the time of application. (For example you need not submit narrative 'KSA' statements; they are not required and will not be evaluated.) In this way we allow you to focus on preparing a resume that best describes your background and abilities. For assistance in preparing your resume, consult the Applicant Guide. Nothing further is required until requested by the Human Resources Office. At that point, we may ask you to submit documentation to support statements made in your resume. For example, we may ask you to provide academic transcripts or proof of Federal employment status. If you are claiming veterans' preference, we may ask you to submit proof of veterans preference (DD-214, and, if claiming 10-point preference, SF-15 plus proof required by that form). If you fail to provide the required documents within the stated time period, we may withdraw a job offer and/or remove you from further consideration.

If you are relying on your education to meet qualification requirements:

Education must be accredited by an accrediting institution recognized by the U.S. Department of Education in order for it to be credited towards qualifications. Therefore, provide only the attendance and/or degrees from schools accredited by accrediting institutions recognized by the U.S. Department of Education.

Failure to provide all of the required information as stated in this vacancy announcement may result in an ineligible rating or may affect the overall rating.

  • Benefits



A career with the U.S. Government provides employees with a comprehensive benefits package. As a federal employee, you and your family will have access to a range of benefits that are designed to make your federal career very rewarding. Learn more about federal benefits.

Review our benefits

Eligibility for benefits depends on the type of position you hold and whether your position is full-time, part-time, or intermittent. Contact the hiring agency for more information on the specific benefits offered.

  • How to Apply


How to Apply

This vacancy is being filled through NASA STARS, an automated Staffing and Recruiting System. NASA partners with USAJOBS in providing a seamless application process. Before you begin the application process, please read the vacancy announcement carefully and have all required information available. You may begin the process of submitting your resume by clicking on the "Apply Online" link. In order to be considered, you must submit a resume completed on the USAJOBS site. When completing your USAJOBS resume, please remember that NASA limits resumes to the equivalent of approximately SIX typed pages, or approximately 32,000 characters including spaces. NASA does not accept resumes uploaded to USAJOBS from a second source or documents attached through USAJOBS' document attachment feature. Once you submit your resume to NASA, you will be asked to provide additional information, including statements addressing the NASA SL or ST Evaluation Criteria. Because your answers will not be saved until you complete the entire application, WE STRONGLY RECOMMEND THAT YOU ANSWER THESE QUESTIONS IN A SEPARATE TEXT DOCUMENT AND INSERT THEM INTO THE ONLINE FORM. INCOMPLETE APPLICATIONS ARE NOT SAVED. To receive consideration do NOT answer the questions with "see resume". You may edit a previously submitted application if the announcement is still open.

If you are unable to apply electronically for this position, submit your resume and supplemental questions to: National Aeronautics and Space Administration (NASA), Resume Operations Center, Mailstop: HS50, Marshall Space Flight Center, AL 35812. DO NOT submit your resume directly to the Center advertising this vacancy. Mailed resumes must be received by the close of business on the closing date of the announcement. Hard copy resume requirements are provided at: Hard Copy Resume Requirements.

If you are a first time applicant, we recommend that you review NASA's Applicant Guide to ensure that you are providing a complete resume. Failure to submit the supplemental data and a resume that contains all of the required information may result in loss of consideration for positions in which you are interested.

All applications must be received no later than midnight Eastern Time on the closing date of the announcement.

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Agency contact information
Kim Mordaunt


NASA's Resume Operations Center 4200 Rideout Road, Mailstop HS50 Marshall Space Flight Center, AL US

Learn more about this agency

Next steps

Candidates for NASA positions are evaluated using our automated staffing and recruitment system, NASA STARS, which compares your skills and experience as described in your resume with the requirements of the position. If you are found to be a highly qualified candidate, you will be referred to the selecting official for further consideration. (In some cases, individuals with priority for special consideration must be considered and selected before other candidates.) Whether or not you are contacted for an interview depends upon the location of the position and the judgment of the selecting official. At NASA, we pride ourselves on efficient and timely recruitment actions, and you can normally expect to learn the outcome of the selection process in a fairly short period of time. In addition, to ensure that you can measure progress for yourself, NASA provides you with regularly updated information on the status of the vacancy announcement.

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  • Fair & Transparent
Fair & Transparent

The Federal hiring process is setup to be fair and transparent. Please read the following guidance.

Equal Employment Opportunity Policy

The United States Government does not discriminate in employment on the basis of race, color, religion, sex (including pregnancy and gender identity), national origin, political affiliation, sexual orientation, marital status, disability, genetic information, age, membership in an employee organization, retaliation, parental status, military service, or other non-merit factor.

  • Equal Employment Opportunity (EEO) for federal employees & job applicants

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Reasonable Accommodation Policy

Federal agencies must provide reasonable accommodation to applicants with disabilities where appropriate. Applicants requiring reasonable accommodation for any part of the application and hiring process should contact the hiring agency directly. Determinations on requests for reasonable accommodation will be made on a case-by-case basis.

A reasonable accommodation is any change to a job, the work environment, or the way things are usually done that enables an individual with a disability to apply for a job, perform job duties or receive equal access to job benefits.

Under the Rehabilitation Act of 1973, federal agencies must provide reasonable accommodations when:

  • An applicant with a disability needs an accommodation to have an equal opportunity to apply for a job.
  • An employee with a disability needs an accommodation to perform the essential job duties or to gain access to the workplace.
  • An employee with a disability needs an accommodation to receive equal access to benefits, such as details, training, and office-sponsored events.

You can request a reasonable accommodation at any time during the application or hiring process or while on the job. Requests are considered on a case-by-case basis.

Learn more about disability employment and reasonable accommodations or how to contact an agency.

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Legal and regulatory guidance
  • Financial suitability
  • Social security number request
  • Privacy Act
  • Signature and false statements
  • Selective Service
  • New employee probationary period

This job originated on For the full announcement and to apply, visit Only resumes submitted according to the instructions on the job announcement listed at will be considered.

Open & closing dates: 04/12/2018 to 05/14/2018

Salary: $126,148 to $174,500 per year

Pay scale & grade: ST 00

Work schedule: Full-Time

Appointment type: Multiple Appointment Types