Advanced Structures Engineer - Composites

Marion, VA, USA
Required Clearance
Secret, obtainable within reasonable time based on requirements
Employment Type
Full Time
Hiring Company
General Dynamics Mission Systems

Basic Qualifications

Requires a Bachelor’s degree in Mechanical Engineering, or a related Science, Engineering or Mathematics field. Also requires 5+ years of job-related experience, or a Master's degree plus 3 years of job-related experience.

CLEARANCE REQUIREMENTS: Department of Defense Secret security clearance is required within a reasonable period of time. Applicants selected will be subject to a U.S. Government security investigation and must meet eligibility requirements for access to classified information. Due to the nature of work performed within our facilities, U.S. citizenship is required.

Responsibilities for this Position

General Dynamics Mission Systems has an immediate opening for an Advanced Structures Engineer - Composites. This position is a multi-disciplinary position involving structural design, stress, and test engineering, while also supporting materials & process and 3D design as needed. The position will provide you an opportunity to further advance your skills in these areas with cutting-edge technology that supports some of our nation’s core defense/intelligence services and systems. General Dynamics Mission Systems employees work closely with esteemed customers to develop solutions that allow them to carry out high-stakes national security missions.


Bachelor of Science in a Mechanical Engineering related field, plus a minimum of 5 years of relevant composites experience; or Master’s degree plus a minimum of 3 years of relevant experience.



  • Multi-Disciplinary Position – Stress (design and operations support, MRB), Static & Dynamic (normal modes, random vibration), Test Engineering (authoring test plans, reports, data regression), as well as supporting material & process engineering (M&P) and / or 3D design activities as needed.
  • Develop structural models of various product lines (radomes, aerostructures, expandable shelters, tooling, and other misc structures) that will be used for static and dynamic (normal modes, random vibration) analysis.
  • Lead Development Program structural qualification testing, including writing test plans, coordinating on site testing, writing test reports, etc. Qualification tests may include static loads, shock & vibration, and bird strike testing.
  • Support nonconforming material evaluations as a member of material review board (MRB) relating to the structural analysis of components and assemblies, and recommend solutions
  • Support M&P Engineering in the development of material qualification/certification efforts by authoring material qualification test plans and reports.
  • Support 3D design to create mechanical models and accompanying drawings
  • Familiarity with ASTM test standards used in the testing of polymer matrix composite (PMC) solid and sandwich laminates.
  • Lead the planning and execution of small projects or task elements within larger projects, organizations, or for groups of projects
  • Support technical customer meetings and presentations
  • Support Internal Research and Development projects
  • Conduct feasibility studies and testing of new and modified designs
  • Travel will be required (infrequent to 10%)


  • Strong FEA (Finite Element Analysis) experience utilizing ANSYS (preferred) or NASTRAN (willing to learn ANSYS)
  • Structural analysis product experience with composite materials utilizing a wide range of composite manufacturing processes including hand lay-up/autoclave cure and adhesive bonding
  • Experience with analyzing and testing polymer matrix composites
  • Experience in an aerospace manufacturing environment in stress and structural design
  • Experience with composites materials testing and qualification methods
  • Experience with CATIA, Creo, or equivalent 3D modeling software.
  • Ability to analyze material failure data and laboratory test results to determine causes of failure for composite products
  • Ability to quickly understand and interpret the technical, organizational and process aspects of the tasks assigned and relate them to the technical needs of the overall project or organization
  • Ability to interpret engineering drawings and specifications
  • Excellent verbal and written communication skills including ability to prepare and present technical briefings to management and customers
  • High degree of analytic problem-solving skills
  • Experience with design of experiments
  • Familiarity with CNC machining, assembly, and finishing
  • Proficient in MS Office applications – Word, Excel, and PowerPoint
  • Experience with Shock and Vibration testing a plus.

Company Overview

General Dynamics Mission Systems (GDMS) engineers a diverse portfolio of high technology solutions, products and services that enable customers to successfully execute missions across all domains of operation. With a global team of 12,000+ top professionals, we partner with the best in industry to expand the bounds of innovation in the defense and scientific arenas. Given the nature of our work and who we are, we value trust, honesty, alignment and transparency. We offer highly competitive benefits and pride ourselves in being a great place to work with a shared sense of purpose. You will also enjoy a flexible work environment where contributions are recognized and rewarded. If who we are and what we do resonates with you, we invite you to join our high performance team!

General Dynamics is an Equal Opportunity/Affirmative Action Employer that is committed to hiring a diverse and talented workforce. EOE/Disability/Veteran

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