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Innovation Endeavors
Innovation Endeavors

Ground Stations Engineer



San Francisco, CA, USA
Posted on Friday, July 28, 2023

Welcome to Planet. We believe in using space to help life on Earth.

Planet designs, builds, and operates the largest constellation of imaging satellites in history. This constellation delivers an unprecedented dataset of empirical information via a revolutionary cloud-based platform to authoritative figures in commercial, environmental, and humanitarian sectors. We are both a space company and data company all rolled into one.

Customers and users across the globe use Planet's data to develop new technologies, drive revenue, power research, and solve our world’s toughest obstacles.

As we control every component of hardware design, manufacturing, data processing, and software engineering, our office is a truly inspiring mix of experts from a variety of domains.

We have a people-centric approach toward culture and community and we strive to iterate in a way that puts our team members first and prepares our company for growth. Join Planet and be a part of our mission to change the way people see the world.

Planet is a global company with employees working remotely world wide and joining us from offices in San Francisco, Washington DC, Germany, and The Netherlands.

About the Role:

As an Ground Station Engineer at Planet you will be a member of an Operations and Development team focused on >99% uptime of a geographically diverse Ground Station network. The network is composed of a mix of cloud infrastructure, physical servers, networking equipment, and industrial controllers working in unison to autonomously track and communicate with Planet’s 150+ satellite constellation.

Planet’s satellites generate a substantial dataset and moving that data across the Ground Station network daily poses ever changing design goals for our Operations Team. The Ground Station team works closely with Spacecraft Operators and Mission Control engineers to autonomously control the spacecraft and bring the data back to Earth.

This position will require the candidate to work 3 days a week at our headquarters in San Francisco, CA.

Impact You’ll Own:

Contribute to the design, operation, and reliability of a growing global Ground Station Network spanning 6 continents.

Be the Responsible Engineer for ground station sites, working with site staff and vendors to maintain a highly reliable downlink network around the world. You will partner and collaborate with various teams with Planet, ranging from Mission Operations to Spacecraft design, to ensure the Ground Station Network meets all of the needs to achieve Planet’s missions.

What You Bring:

  • Basic antenna system design and analysis
  • Basic programming - scripting and data analysis
  • Familiarity with RF test equipment such as spectrum and network analyzers
  • Innate Curiosity

What Makes You Stand Out:

  • Excellent understanding of RF communication and satellite communication protocols
  • Experience in an Operations environment with an on-call schedule
  • Willingness to travel up to 25% of the time
  • Experience with RF Electronics and Communication Systems including: RF Front-End Equipment, Back-End Equipment, Communication Hardware, and Link Budgets.
  • Antenna system calibration, diagnostics and monitoring experience
  • Experience with telemetry, tracking and control systems
  • Project management and logistics experience
  • Radar and/or comms experience
  • Experience with Bash, Python or other scripting or object-oriented languages
  • Experience with Linux servers
  • Mentorship and/or leadership qualities

Benefits While Working at Planet:

  • Comprehensive Health Plan
  • Wellness program and onsite massages in specific offices
  • Flexible Time Off
  • Recognition Programs
  • Commuter Benefits
  • Learning and Tuition Reimbursement
  • Parental Leave
  • Offsites and Happy Hours
  • Volunteering Benefits


The US base salary range for this full-time position at the commencement of employment is $101,400 - $126,800. Additionally, this role might be eligible for discretionary short-term and long-term incentives (bonus and equity). The final salary range is determined by job related experience, skills and location. The range displays our typical hiring range for new hire salaries in US locations only. Your recruiter can share more about the specific salary range for your preferred location during the hiring process.

Why we care so much about Belonging.

We’re dedicated to helping the whole Planet, and to do that we must strive to represent all of it within each of our offices and on all of our teams. That’s why Planet is guided by an ultimate north star of Belonging, dreaming big as we approach our ongoing work with diversity, equity and inclusion. If this job intrigues you, but you’re thinking you might not have all the qualifications, please... do apply! At Planet, we are looking for well-rounded people from around the world who can contribute to more ways than just what is listed in this job description. We don’t just fill positions, we aspire to fulfill people’s careers, most excited about folks who are motivated by our underlying humanitarian efforts. We are a few orbits around the sun before we get to where we want to be, so we hope you’re excited to come along for the ride.

EEO statement:

Planet is committed to building a community where everyone belongs and we invite people from all backgrounds to apply. Planet is an equal opportunity employer, and committed to providing employment opportunities regardless of race, religious creed, color, national origin, ancestry, physical disability, mental disability, medical condition, genetic information, marital status, sex, gender, gender identity, gender expression, pregnancy, childbirth and breastfeeding, age, sexual orientation, military or veteran status, or any other protected classification, in accordance with applicable federal, state, and local laws. Know Your Rights.


Planet is an inclusive community and we know that everyone has their own needs. If you have a disability or special need that requires accommodation during the hiring process, please call Planet's front office at 669-214-9404 or contact your recruiter with your request. Your message will be confidential and we will be happy to assist you.

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Privacy Policy (European Applicants): By clicking "Apply Now" at the top of this job posting, I acknowledge that I have read the Candidate Privacy Notice GDPR Planet Labs Europe, and hereby consent to the collection, processing, use, and storage of my personal information as described therein.