Northrop Grumman Innovation Systems Careers

Senior Principal Design Engineer

San Diego, CA
Engineering and Sciences

Job Description

Job ID: JLH20183010-48491

At Northrop Grumman, our employees have incredible opportunities to work on revolutionary systems that impact people’s lives around the world today, and for generations to come. Our pioneering and inventive spirit has enabled us to be at the forefront of many technological advancements in our nation’s history - from the first flight across the Atlantic Ocean, to stealth bombers, to landing on the moon. We look for people who have bold new ideas, courage and a pioneering spirit to join forces to invent the future, and have fun along the way. Our culture thrives on intellectual curiosity, cognitive diversity and bringing your whole self to work — and we have an insatiable drive to do what others think is impossible. Our employees are not only part of history, they’re making history.

Northrop Grumman Innovation Systems designs, builds and delivers space, defense and aviation-related systems to customers around the world. Our main products include launch vehicles and related propulsion systems; missile products, subsystems and defense electronics; precision weapons, armament systems and ammunition; satellites and associated space components and services; and advanced aerospace structures.

Our San Diego, CA location is seeking a Sr. Principal Mechanical Engineer for the Design Engineer team.

Job Summary

Candidates for the Sr. Principal Mechanical Engineering position will have a variety of experience levels with a common theme of having a balance of technical knowledge and practical skills and experience. This role guides the successful completion of major programs and may function in a project leadership role.

Specific Responsibilities will include:

  • Contribute to the design of jigs and fixtures used for assembly of spacecraft structures and subcomponents.
  • Utilize computer-aided design tools to develop design concepts, preliminary layouts, sketches and notes necessary to present design to internal and external customers.
  • Document engineering concepts in drawing format using GD&T per ANSI Y14.5.
  • Support manufacturing technology development of advanced materials using a variety of tooling and manufacturing methods.
  • Check completed layouts and drawings for clarity, completeness, conformity to standards, procedures, specifications, and accuracy of calculations and dimensioning.
  • Develop technical solutions to complex problems which require regular use of ingenuity and creativity. Apply current technology and/or aid in development of new technologies

No relocation is offered for this position.

U.S. Citizen capable of qualifying for a security clearance


  • Knowledge of composite material properties in aircraft or aerospace applications
  • Experience with the design of large, complex tools, jigs, and fixtures
  • Strong communication skills
  • Experience with tooling design to support manufacture of fiber reinforced composite hardware
  • Strong customer service skills
  • Strong interpersonal skills
  • Training in LEAN or Six Sigma methods and evidence of application is required

Education/ Experience

  • BS in Mechanical Engineering or related discipline
  • 3-5 years of experience solid modeling experience with I-Deas, Unigraphics, Pro-Engineer, or CATIA
  • 10 years of relevant industry experience (or Master’s degree & 7 years of experience)
  • Hardware and tool design experience applying knowledge of advanced fiber reinforced composite materials
  • Experience working within a team of engineers and technicians in a manufacturing environment operating to ISO quality standards
  •  Demonstrated analytical approach to problem solving
  • Prior experience in an Aerospace or Space hardware manufacturing environment preferred.


Northrop Grumman is committed to hiring and retaining a diverse workforce. We are proud to be an Equal Opportunity/Affirmative Action Employer, making decisions without regard to race, color, religion, creed, sex, sexual orientation, gender identity, marital status, national origin, age, veteran status, disability, or any other protected class. For our complete EEO/AA and Pay Transparency statement, please visit U.S. Citizenship is required for most positions.


Job Type: Full Time
Desired Travel: less than 25%
Years of Experience: 8-10 Years
Education: Bachelors
Expertise: Engineering
Group: Space