CFD Development and Application Engineer


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Analytical Mechanics Associates, Inc., (AMA) is proud of our customer relationships, our diverse and dynamic work environment, and our employees' career satisfaction. AMA is a small business specializing in aerospace engineering, business analytics, information technology, and visualization solutions. AMA combines the best of engineering and mathematics capabilities with the latest in information technologies and visualization to build creative solutions. Headquartered in Hampton, VA, AMA has operations in Huntsville, AL; Dallas and Houston, TX; Denver, CO; Santa Clara and Mountain View, CA; New Orleans, LA; and Hancock County, MS. We offer a competitive salary and attractive benefits package, including paid personal leave and holidays, salary deferrals into a 401(k) matching plan with immediate vesting, tuition reimbursement, a short/long term disability plan, medical, dental, vision insurance and annual bonuses. Our website describes our corporate values and how they apply to the professional success and growth of our employees.

Job Description

AMA is currently accepting applications for a full time on-site position at NASA Ames Research Center in Mountain View, CA for an engineer with demonstrated experience in computational fluid dynamics software development and simulation in support of NASA entry systems. This position is within the Aerothermodynamics Branch, part of the Entry Systems and Technology Division, supporting the ESTRAD contract which pursues the research and development of advanced planetary entry systems and entry systems technology, and provides critical analysis capabilities in support of all NASA planetary exploration missions.

Responsibilities include:

  • Perform numerical simulations using in-house high-fidelity tools (DPLR, US3D, NEQAIR) to model the aerothermodynamic and aerodynamic environment of a variety of entry vehicle concepts, and to support design and analysis of experiments. This includes proficiency in constructing complex computational grids (Pointwise, Gridgen, GridPro) to accurately define the flow field and vehicle/test article geometry.
  • Interpret simulation results and communicate them effectively to stakeholders. Provide recommendations as required to inform vehicle and test design.
  • Work creatively within a collaborative software development environment to develop innovative solutions for challenging problems in entry systems design. We develop multi-dimensional, multi-physics computational tools that incorporate a wide array of disciplines. Topics of particular interest include prediction of reactive flow properties, thermal protection material response and flowfield coupling, radiative spectral and transport solvers, chemically reacting turbulent boundary layers, modeling of dynamic environments (moving surfaces and bodies), and numerical schemes to improve efficiency and accuracy of simulation. Software is written primarily in Fortran 90, and relies on standard external libraries.
  • Daily application of strong written and oral communication skills in support of one or multiple NASA projects and the Aerothermodynamics Branch.


  • PhD or equivalent in relevant engineering or science discipline.
  • Self-motivated with strong interpersonal skills.
  • Demonstrated understanding of the basic physics of high-temperature, thermochemical non-equilibrium flows, particularly as pertains to planetary entry.
  • Demonstrated technical competence with modern three-dimensional computational fluid dynamics solvers, both structured and unstructured.
  • Ability to work both independently and as a team member within a project environment with short-term concrete deliverables.

Desired Qualifications:

  • Experience working with teams in a collaborative software development environment.
  • Experience with parallel programming architectures, e.g. MPI, OpenMP.
  • Experience with Git version control software.
  • Experience with NASA software such as DPLR, US3D, LAURA, Fun3D, OVERFLOW, or Loci-CHEM.
  • Experience with commercial grid generation software (Pointwise, Gridgen, GridPro, etc.) and data visualization software (Tecplot, ParaView, FieldView, etc.).
  • Understanding of basic principles of thermal protection material response, heat transfer, and multi-phase phenomenon is desired.
  • Understanding of radiative transport and mechanisms for plasma radiation.

AMA is an Equal Opportunity Employer. U.S. Citizenship or U.S. permanent residency is required for the advertised position.