Lead Ironbird Test Engineer

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Vertical Aerospace is building technology to revolutionise how people fly with a vision of electric flight for everyone.

Vertical Aerospace is growing its existing Test team to support an exciting novel aircraft development and subsequent certification programme.  Part of this expansion is to bring in an experienced, passionate, and driven Ironbird / Aircraft Integration Test Engineer.  Responsible for delivering a complex, multi-disciplinary whole aircraft ground test rig, to test many of the novel technologies we are developing.  The role will be crucial in Vertical’s programme delivery, developing a critical capability to provide crucial data to support the aircraft design, technology development and certification workstreams.

The work will involve gathering the aircraft’s automated test rig requirements, down selecting solutions, driving the build and commissioning of the integration rig, to ultimately running the asset to meet the objectives to the required standard and on-time/budget.  It is most likely to involve significant partnerships with external companies to deliver.

The Aircraft Integration Test Engineer reports to the Head of Test and will work closely with most engineering teams in the business, in our matrix organisation.

The successful candidate will be able to work in dynamic innovative teams, building positive working environments and diplomatically resolving challenges to programme delivery.



  • Leading the specification, design, development and subsequent operation of a sophisticated system level test asset that will provide invaluable data to the engineering teams and ultimately assist in the certification of our aircraft
  • Gathering test requirements from around the engineering function and determining the best solution to meet the needs, whilst keeping future flexibility into consideration
  • Ensuring close integration of the software and hardware aspects of the integrated testing approach (role supported by the Digital System Software team)
  • Engaging and down selecting external partners/suppliers to supply elements of the Ironbird rig solution
  • Determination of safety provisions required for test operations, whilst being a role model of the company’s “safety-first” culture
  • Some elements of “hands on” work will be expected, with the assistance of our skilled technicians.
  • Working with the Programme function to determine the most effective testing schedule and feature deliveries
  • As required assist with other, non-rig, test planning and activities, this could involve flight test support


Experience & Qualifications

  • Previous experience on rapid development programmes, maturing new technologies at an integrated system level
  • A great understanding of vehicle level testing methods, instrumentation/calibration requirements, health and safety considerations, data acquisition and certification supporting activities
  • Technical report writing, including test plans, risk assessments and statements of work
  • Establishing and maintaining relationships with numerous internal and external stakeholders, with a passion for on-time delivery
  • Excellent interpersonal skills to effectively communicate with colleagues across a wide range of technical disciplines, reporting issues and progress to seniors
  • Fluent in spoken and written English language
  • Competent with Microsoft Applications and IT proficient
  • Qualification and experiment requirements (must have):
    • Engineering or Science degree (BEng or higher)
    • At least 10 years experience in a high tech test engineering environment


Experience of the following is desired

  • Previous working experience with automotive “lab cars”, powertrain test facilities or aircraft/space “iron birds”
  • Experience with electric powertrains and/or electric aircraft development
  • Automated test systems and methods, utilising Continuous Integration and Continual Deployment methods
  • Developing complex test assets to support aircraft certification and an understanding of Aerospace standards
  • Whole Vehicle / Electro-mechanical systems integration experience
  • CAD familiarity (CATIA/Solidworks) for interrogating digital models
  • Experience working with High Voltage systems
  • MATLAB/Simulink knowledge
  • Writing requirements for software delivery



To apply for this role, submit your CV and a covering letter to us.

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