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Manager, Autonomy Robotics

Company: AeroVironment
Location: Simi Valley
Posted on: February 3, 2020

Job Description:

Manager, Autonomy Robotics


Simi Valley, CA

Employment type

Regular - Full Time



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We are currently seeking a Manager, Autonomy Robotics to join our team.

AeroVironment Engineering is seeking an Autonomy Robotics Manager to lead an engineering team within our Autonomy group. This role will have the opportunity to develop a variety of innovative autonomous robotic systems for defense and commercial applications. In addition to product development, this position will support engineering recruitment and performance management. These development efforts will generally be small focused design teams, which will require the successful candidate to use a range of skills and tools across traditional engineering, computer science, and mathematical disciplines including optimization, planning, and control under uncertainty. Because of the nature of the development efforts a successful candidate will lead a variety of stages of development including requirements definition, concept design, prototyping, detailed design, test and evaluation and validation and verification testing. The Autonomy Manager will inspire, motivate, mentor, develop and empower the team to deliver organizational goals, while also delivering value back to AV. This individual must also demonstrate AV core values and encourage others to do the same. This leader must think beyond the immediate situation, explore multiple potential paths, and adapt decision-making style based on the situational circumstances and use past experience and best practices to identify issues, potential problems, and risk. The successful candidate must also understand and acknowledge how business unit level goals meet overall organizational objectives and work in a manner to meet or exceed expectations.

Job Duties and Responsibilities

  • Develop hiring plans to meet company needs

  • Develop robotic autonomy algorithms capable of making robust decisions for planning and control in uncertain, dynamic environments multi-vehicle operations using state-of-the-art techniques from academia and industry.

  • Write and test software to support the integration of autonomy algorithms into aircraft (such as autopilots, payloads, or other functional components) or other robotic systems.

  • Design and prototype autonomous systems and validate designs through a series of purpose-designed experiments.

  • Perform design and analysis tasks using AeroVironment and industry developed tools.

  • Writes system requirements, system test plans, and assist in validation testing.

  • Trouble-shoot complex systems from a multidisciplinary (hardware and software) perspective.

  • Support flight test operations, periodic travel will likely be required in support of testing equipment at approved flying locations.

  • Perform a variety of engineering support activities on R&D projects.

  • Document work and assist with the transition of new capabilities, technologies and prototypes into a production development environment.

  • Conduct/support design reviews

  • Has respect for profit and strives to meet project schedule and budget.

  • Experience in a Matrixed organization

  • Familiarity with Python or ROS (Robot Operating System) a plus.

  • Experience Managing Research Program Flight Tests and demonstrations.

  • Successful government research proposal experience a plus.

  • Design/build experience is desired; UAV or R/C aircraft or other lightweight miniature robotic systems.

  • Development of FPGA firmware, Ubuntu ARM Linux software, and/or GPU accelerated algorithms.

  • Ability to Process or interpret sensor data or signals or results

  • Ability Investigate Avionics or Sensor peripherals, such as welders, controllers, or other equipment to design software based Electro-Mechanical systems

  • An understanding of Control Theory and Transform functions helpful

  • Exposure to Guidance Navigation and Control Systems along with Modeling Simulation and Control helpful

  • Exposure to Model-Based Systems Engineering helpful but not required

  • Exposure to Development of Video Processing Chain for Computer Vision (CV) on embedded systems to enhance the Exposure to Autonomy of Unmanned Aircraft Systems (UAS, UAV).

  • Exposure to Computer vision and machine learning systems architecture/hardware and integration.

  • Inspires, motivates, and empowers people to deliver organizational goals, while also delivering value back to employees.

  • Demonstrates AV core values and encourages others to do the same.

  • Uses vision to think beyond the immediate situation, explore multiple potential paths, and adapt decision-making style based on the situational circumstances.

  • Uses past experience and best practices to identify issues, potential problems, and risk.

  • Acknowledges how business unit level goals help to meet overall organizational objectives and works in a manner to meet or exceed set expectations.

  • Demonstrates ability to adapt decision-making style based on the situational circumstances.

    Other Matrixed Sills include:

    • Proficiency with a deep learning framework such as TensorFlow or Keras

    • Proficiency with Python and basic libraries for machine learning such as scikit-learn and pandas

    • Expertise in visualizing and manipulating big datasets

    • Proficiency with OpenCV

    • Familiarity with Linux

    • Ability to select hardware to run an ML model with the required latency

    • Computational statistics

    • Mathematical optimization

    • Data mining

    • Exploratory data analysis

    • Predictive analytics

      Required Qualifications & Background

      • U.S. Citizenship required

      • MS/PhD (PhD preferred), Degree in Mathematics, Optimization, Computer Science/Engineering, Electrical Engineering, Aerospace, or Mechanical Engineering with a minimum of 12 years of management experience within relevant industry.

      • Research or industrial experience in the development of collaborative autonomous robotic systems.

      • Familiarity with C/C++ and Matlab required

      • Experience in two or more areas: autonomous control, optimization under uncertainty, route planning, trajectory optimization, autonomous decision making, collaborative autonomy, cognitive information processing, probability theory, obstacle avoidance, bio-inspired autonomy, perceptual autonomy, autonomous mission planning

      • Demonstrated ability to trouble-shoot complex systems.

      • Excellent verbal and written skills.

      • Demonstrated Technical leadership experience

      • Must be a team player and collaborate effectively.

      • Familiarity with office software and computer-based productivity tools.

      • Must be willing to work on government contracts and ability to obtain a security clearance.

      • Able to excel in a fast paced, deadline-driven environment

        ITAR Requirement:

        This position requires the use of information which is subject to compliance with International Traffic Arms Regulations (ITAR). To conform to U.S. Government export regulations/ITAR, applicants must be a U.S. Citizen, lawful permanent resident of the U.S. (or, green card holder), 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. Applicants cannot be hired until they are qualified to have such access. Some positions due to contracts will require current U.S. Citizenship.

        Benefits: AV offers an excellent benefits package including medical, dental vision, 401K with company matching, a 9/80 work schedule and a paid holiday shutdown. For more information about our company benefit offerings please visit:

        We also encourage you to review our company website at to learn more about us.

        Principals only need apply. NO agencies please.

        Who We Are

        Based in California, AeroVironment (AVAV) is a global leader in unmanned aircraft systems (UAS) and tactical missile systems. Founded in 1971 by celebrated physicist and engineer, Dr. Paul MacCready, we've been at the leading edge of technical innovation for more than 45 years. Be a part of the team that developed the world's most widely used military drones and created the first submarine-launched reconnaissance drone, and has seven innovative vehicles that are part of the Smithsonian Institution's permanent collection in Washington, DC.

        Join us today in developing the next generation of small UAS and tactical missile systems that will deliver more actionable intelligence to our customers so they can proceed with certainty - and succeed.

        What We Do

        Building on a history of technological innovation, AeroVironment designs, develops, produces, and supports an advanced portfolio of unmanned aircraft systems (UAS) and tactical missile systems. Agencies of the U.S. Department of Defense and allied military services use the company's hand-launched UAS to provide situational awareness to tactical operating units through real-time, airborne reconnaissance, surveillance, and target acquisition.

        AeroVironment Incorporated is an equal opportunity employer, M/F/D/V and works in compliance with both federal and state laws. We are committed to the concept regarding Equal Employment opportunity. Qualified candidates will be considered for employment regardless of race, color, religion, age, sex, national origin, marital status, medical condition nor disability, genetics, veteran and all others that may appy.

        To view our CCPA Privacy Policy click here:

Keywords: AeroVironment, Simi Valley , Manager, Autonomy Robotics, Executive , Simi Valley, California

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