Astronomical Engineer II

Job Summary

Science Engineering
Space Telescope Science Institute
Number of Positions Available
Work Arrangement
In-Person Location(s)

Baltimore, MD
United States

Job Description

The Space Telescope Science Institute (STScI) is a multi-mission science and flight operations centers for NASA’s flagship observatories on the Johns Hopkins University Homewood campus in Baltimore, Maryland. Learn more about our missions.  

The Data Management Division at the Space Telescope Science Institute (STScI) is seeking an astronomical engineer II to support the Mikulski Archive for Space Telescopes (MAST).  The STScI is the science operations center for several NASA missions, including the Hubble Space Telescope (HST) and the James Webb Space Telescope (JWST). MAST will also contribute to science operations for the Nancy Grace Roman Space Telescope, including its archive, in formulation for launch in the mid-2020s. STScI hosts the MAST archive that contains data from more than 20 missions. 
This position can support hybrid work. Candidates must reside in or be willing to relocate to our local market. (MD, DE, VA, PA, DC & WV). This position requires US Citizenship or Permanent Residence in order to meet ITAR requirement. 

Basic Functions: 

This position will lead archive scientific development activities related to astronomical catalogs data products, and provide scientific guidance on catalog development efforts. This employee will assist in the development of user documentation and tutorials on MAST catalog data products, tools, and interfaces.  

Duties and Responsibilities:

  • Participate in the design and development of various tools for astronomical catalogs and services that support community usage of catalogs
  • Develop and maintain various mission catalog data products: observation catalogs
  • (Common Archive Observation Model), source catalogs (Roman Source Catalogs, Guide Star Catalog, Pan-STARRS1 Object Catalog, Hubble Source Catalog, TESS Input Catalog, etc) and spectra catalogs
  • Participate catalog metadata management development
  • Develop software tools for enhancing catalog data exploration both cross missions in the Mikulski Archive for Space Telescopes (MAST) and cross archive centers


  • Expertise (minimum of three years or equivalent knowledge level) in the scientific use of catalogs
  • Experience in Python scripting, including the use of common Python-based astronomy packages
  • Experience with large datasets processing and development
  • Experience with SQL programming
  • Effective written and verbal communication skills, and the ability to describe astronomical data to a broad science community
  • Ability to analyze and solve problems independently, as well as work collaboratively and communicate effectively with multi-disciplinary teams and leadership


  • Experience with AWS Cloud related tools/services
  • Experience with git, Kubernetes, Ansible, Terraform and CI/CD process
  • Experience with Containerization
  • Experience with Machine Learning skills used in astronomical catalog data


The position requires a Bachelor’s degree in Computer Science, Software Engineering, Engineering, Astronomy, Physics or a relevant field with a minimum of 2 years working experience. Substitution of additional relevant education or experience for stated qualifications will be considered. 

Compensation is commensurate with education, skills and experience. 

Travel required: as needed. 

Our excellent benefits include:

 Employer retirement contribution – direct STScI contribution of 10% of your salary from your first day 

  • Generous time off benefits that include eight paid holidays, two discretionary holidays, up to 24 days of vacation leave, and 12 days for sick leave
  • Flexible work schedule with healthy work/life balance
  • Comprehensive medical/dental/vision/prescription plans, and more!

Apply Here:

Applications received by April 25, 2024, will receive full consideration. The position will remain open until filled.

Compensation and Benefits

Compensation Notes

Our Robust and Competitive Benefit Programs

Application Details

Publication Start Date
2024 Mar 26
Application Deadline
2024 Apr 25
Reference Code
Space Telescope Science Institute


Michelle Raphael