Scientific activities / projects

Software Developer for Space Applications

Starting date

1. December 2019

Duration of contract

3 years


up to German TVöD 13

Type of employment


"Cutting-edge research requires excellent minds – particularly more females – at all levels. Launch your mission with us and send in your application now!" Prof. Pascale Ehrenfreund - Chair of the DLR Executive Board

The Institute of Optical Sensor Systems investigates and develops active and passive optical sensor systems for satellites, flying platforms and robotic systems. Our vision is to develop autonomous optical sensor systems in analogy to and extension of the human visual perception.

The sensor systems are developed for applications spanning the UV, visible, infrared and THz spectral range and are applied in Earth observation, planetary research and robotics as well as in transport and security. Such systems contain optical, mechanical, electronical and software components. The development process involves a range of disciplines, including requirements management, systems engineering, design, manufacturing, environmental testing and optical calibration.

The modelling and development of algorithms for sensor information processing is the basis for autonomous optical sensor systems. Complex real-time software application embedded in the sensor systems are developed, verified, integrated and validated on specific hardware processor platforms. Quality and reliability are key factors for the mission success.

Currently the institute is involved for developing of optical payloads for different space missions. A Raman spectrometer is developed for the Japanese deep space mission MMX for Insitu exploration of the Mars-moon Phobos. In addition significant parts are contributed for the PLATO mission searching for Exosolar planets, e.g. developing the on-board data processing system. To accomplish these tasks, the institute needs a motivated staff member who will be involved in the development of embedded software as a real-time application to strengthen our software engineering team.

Your tasks:

Software development, verification and validation of on-board real-time software

  • analysis of scientific and technical requirements as well as  conception of the software system for data processing and instrument control
  • specification of interfaces and modelling of the real-time software design
  • implementation of embedded software and integration on the hardware target platform (e.g. LEON3-FT processor) of the sensor system as mission critical application
  • development and verification of algorithms for scientific data processing and hardware control (e.g. spectral data processing, control of optical focus mechanism)
  • development of a test automation system for validation testing (i.e. Hardware-In-The-Loop testing)
  • authoring  of development and project documents based on the ECSS standards from ESA
  • coordination of work with international partners connected with travel activities
  • authoring of scientific publications

You will be working in a dynamic international team of researchers and engineers with the prospect of scientific and academic development.

Your qualifications:

  • successful completed university degree master's level or equivalent experience with major software engineering and development, computer science, space engineering, or a comparable qualification
  • experiences in implementation, design and verification of embedded software systems with high criticality preferred for space applications
  • experience in at least one programming language (C or/and C++)
  • experience with the implementation of algorithms for scientific data processing
  • knowledge about development of optical instrumentation
  • knowledge about Real-Time Operating Systems (e.g. RTEMS) and CCSDS protocol standard for interface communication
  • knowledge with ECSS standards from ESA for software engineering (e.g. ECSS-E-40) or similar standards including methods for software product assurance (e.g. code coverage, HSIA)
  • knowledge in professional configuration management
  • motivation and flexibility to work on new scientific topics
  • fluent in written and spoken English
  • mastery of written and spoken German is an advantage

Your benefits:

Look forward to a fulfilling job with an employer who appreciates your commitment and supports your personal and professional development. Our unique infrastructure offers you a working environment in which you have unparalled scope to develop your creative ideas and accomplish your professional objectives. Our human resources policy places great value on a healthy family and work-life-balance as well as equal opportunities for persons of all genders (m/f/non-binary). Individuals with disabilities will be given preferential consideration in the event their qualifications are equivalent to those of other candidates.

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Technical contact

Gisbert Peter
Institute of Optical Sensor Systems

Phone: +49 30 67055-382

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Vacancy 44278

HR department Berlin

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DLR site Berlin

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Institute of Optical Sensor Systems

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