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Flight Technician - Stratospheric Balloons

Near Space Labs

Near Space Labs

United States
Posted on Saturday, January 28, 2023

Near Space Labs is leading the next generation of Earth imaging. We design, build and operate a fleet of proprietary, stratospheric balloons called Swiftys. Our Swiftys fly to the edge of space to deliver high quality, highly updated imagery of our planet at down to earth prices.

Our innovations don’t stop at image capture. Customers need us to process and serve data in a format that is easily accessible for their data scientists, product managers, geographers, and remote sensing specialists. We make it easy for them to quickly and seamlessly evaluate the dynamics of our planet, climate, and urban environments.

Flight Operations is a fast-paced growing organization responsible for operating and launching our fleet of Swiftys throughout the U.S. to meet our customer imaging and data needs.

We are hiring for Flight Technicians to join our field teams to operate, maintain, and fly our fleet of Swiftys throughout the nation! This is an hourly, full-time position, requiring 100% travel with a rotating 7-day on/7-day off work schedule. The ideal candidate is solutions-oriented, well organized, an excellent communicator, a safe driver, with experience troubleshooting electromechanical hardware or is a new college graduate with the skills to learn. This role is great for you if you make communication a priority, enjoy working on teams and in dynamic environments, and have a love for the outdoors (as both a hiker and/or adventurer).

Compensation & Benefits:

  • $20-$25 per hour with ample opportunity for overtime at 1.5 and 2 times hourly base pay
  • $2K hiring bonus after the first 6 months of employment
  • 7 day-on/7-day off work schedule
    • Travel to field Monday AM. Travel home Sunday PM.
    • On average 70+ hours per work week; 12 hour shifts.
    • 26 work weeks in the year
  • 200 hours annual Paid Time Off
  • 72 hours sick leave
  • Medical, dental, and vision coverage
  • Monthly learning & development reimbursement
  • Opportunity for equity
  • Training and development, as well as opportunities to grow within the organization

Your responsibilities will be:

  • Job Duties:
    • Work with a team of 1-3 other flight technicians, a vast contractor network, Mission Control, and the Flight Operations Manager to successfully launch and recover our fleet of Swiftys through flight campaigns;
    • Responsible for the local maintenance and troubleshooting of the team's fleet of Swiftys and associated equipment;
    • Generate failure reports for malfunctions and abnormalities in the Swifty and associated equipment with submission to their respective engineering departments;
    • Author and submission of daily technical reports of work performed;
    • Work with the Flight Support Specialist and Flight Operations Manager to provide feedback on components in the field and to ensure quality control;
    • Strictly follow Near Space Labs operational and manufacturing procedures and processes;
    • Provide improvements to Near Space Labs operational procedures and processes;
    • Work closely with Mission Control and your Flight Operations Manager to ensure successful flight campaigns for image capture;
    • Train new Flight Technician team members and contractors on operational procedures in the field;
    • Communicate with members of the local community during Swifty recovery;
    • Coordinate the shipping process to and from Near Space Labs facilities while in the field;
    • Manage and record inventory in the field (e.g. parts, spares, consumables, and tools);
    • Report Swifty and operations metrics from the field through technical reports; and
    • Safely drive and maintain our fleet of road launch vehicles.

  • Working Schedule:
    • Overtime eligible after 8 hours each working day and after 40 hours worked in the work week
    • Work a Seven day ON/Seven day OFF schedule (Monday -Sunday) including most holidays;
    • 100% Overnight Travel;
    • Adhere to a rigid launch schedule to support flight campaigns including, but not limited to, overtime when needed;
    • Ability to support working days of 12+ hours; and
    • Ability to perform the above responsibilities in conjunction with the physical requirements listed below.


  • Positions are nationwide: candidates must live within 60-90 minute drive time of a major international airport such as ATL, BOS, DFW, JFK,LAS, LAX, MIA, MCO, MSP, PHX, ORD, SEA, SFO, etc.

Your Skills

  • Primary Technical:
    • 2+ years of working with electromechanical hardware or BS degree in a related field;
    • Experience troubleshooting systems to determine what equipment and/or components require action to repair/replace or improve;
    • Experience repairing hardware;
    • Oral and written communication skills to convey information at various stages of the execution, troubleshooting, or analysis process which may be ambiguous;
    • Critical thinking to quickly act on issues that arise in the field and find creative solutions;
    • Must be detailed, organized, and punctual; and
    • Ability to operate and adapt to demanding fast-paced situations
  • Primary Administrative:
    • U.S. citizen or permanent resident;
    • Valid U.S. driver's license;
    • Successfully pass a company issued background check; and
    • Successfully pass a motor vehicle record check with a clean driving record for at least 5 years

  • Physical Job Function Requirements:
    • Hike/walk between 0-5 miles with ~20 lbs of equipment per day - Constantly;
    • Hike/walk between 5-12 miles with ~20 lbs of equipment per day - Infrequently;
    • Lift up to 40 lbs from 30 min to 5 hrs per day - Frequently;
    • Lift between 40-60 lbs up to 30 min per day - Frequently;
    • Carry up to 30 lbs from 30 min to 5 hrs per day - Frequently;
    • Carry between 30-60 lbs up to 30 min per day - Frequently;
    • Push or Pull between 130-150 lbs via a hand truck up to 30 min per day - Constantly;
    • Push or Pull up to 50 lbs - Infrequently;
    • Stand (at a time and total in shift) - Constantly;
    • Walk (at a time and total in shift) - Constantly;
    • Climb ladder - Infrequently;
    • Climb tree - Occasionally;
    • Crouch or Kneel - Occasionally;
    • Crawl - Infrequently;
    • Stoop - Occasionally;
    • Reach overhead - Occasionally;
    • Reach below waist level - Frequently;
    • Reach at desk/waist level - Frequently;
    • Simple grasp - Constantly;
    • Firm grasp - Frequently;
    • Fine manipulation - Frequently
    • Sitting for extended periods (to drive or perform work) 0-10 hours per day - Constantly; and
    • Driving a heavy duty truck between 0-8 hours per day - Constantly

  • Preferred Skills:
    • Test engineering/technician and/or manufacturing/production experience;
    • Experience in a field or hardware troubleshooting role;
    • Experience in a startup environment;
    • Land navigational skills; and
    • Ability to drive a heavy duty truck with a 20 ft. trailer attached

COVID-19 requirements:

Near Space Labs requires that all employees who will be meeting with other employees or clients in person or conducting any other face-to-face business be fully vaccinated against Covid-19. Except where an exemption or accommodation applies, non-vaccinated team members are not currently allowed to meet with other employees in person or conduct face-to-face business at this time. Fully vaccinated means that you are at least two weeks past your final vaccination date.

What we offer:

  • An exciting startup culture where you will have the opportunity to play a critical role in building and scaling a one-of-a-kind technology and organization.
  • You will be part of an enthusiastic, international and motivated team of professionals who are committed to building unique technologies, being rigorous, and finding novel solutions to interesting problems.
  • A diverse and inclusive workplace where we welcome people of different backgrounds, experiences and perspectives.
  • A commitment that you will never be bored.

Equal employment opportunity:

Near Space Labs is committed to diversity in our organization and building an equitable and inclusive environment for people of all backgrounds and experiences. We provide equal employment opportunities to all employees and applicants without regard to race, color, religion, gender, national origin, age, disability or genetics.

We especially encourage members of traditionally underrepresented communities to apply, including women, people of color, LGBTQ people, veterans, and people with disabilities.