Sr Research Engineer

Job description


Working under general direction, the engineer will develop state-of-the-art computational models of a space experiment and perform model validation studies against unique microgravity and 1g experimental data. This is a key engineering research position within the Case Western Reserve University computational fluid dynamics (CFD) team responsible for the NASA funded Zero-Boil-Off Tank (ZBOT) Microgravity Experiments. The engineer is expected to perform most assignments independently by applying advanced computational methods to carryout high-fidelity, two-phase flow and heat transfer analyses. The ZBOT experiments are a series of International Space Station science experiments geared towards studying phase change and two phase flow and heat transfer in an enclosed Dewar during self-pressurization and pressure control in microgravity. The first experiment, ZBOT-1, Flew in 2017 the second experiment, ZBOT-NC, is scheduled to fly aboard International Space Station in December 2023. Specifically, the engineer will get started by working with existing state-of-the-art two phase CFD models developed during the ZBOT-1 project and then quite rapidly advance to plan, formulate and develop new CFD models for non-condensable gas effects and tank filling and droplet-spray charge-hold-vent chill down processes for ZBOT-2 and ZBOT-3 experiments. The two–phase CFD models will be developed independently by the candidate but through interaction with the principal investigator and others CFD experts on the university science team.



  1. Plan, schedule, conduct, or coordinate detailed phases of the work of a major project or in a total project of moderate scope. Work with the present ZBOT-1 CFD models, run parametric simulations, analyze and post process results, prepare animations and professional graphics as part of model validation and verification case studies (30%)
  2. Make substantial contributions to determining feasibility of modelling goals/objectives. Enhance technical methodology or content through expansion of existing numerical formulations, or development of new approaches. Develop, encode and validate state-of-the-art two Phase CFD Models for ZBOT-2 and ZBOT-3 Experiment. (40%)
  3. Contribute to the preparation and presentation of science concept review requirements definition review, preliminary design review and critical design review documents and participate in the NASA reviews. (10%)
  4. Provide substantial contributions to reports and publications; author/ co-author on papers, proposals, presentations and reports; may give invited papers. (15%)


  1. Participate in national conferences. nurture and maintain relationships with major customers/ grantors of external research and development grant funding. (3%)
  2. Work with CAD software. Use peer network to expand technical capabilities and identify new research opportunities. Participate in training courses for different software packages and multipurpose codes. (2%)
  3. Perform other duties as assigned. (<1%)



Department: Daily contact with supervisor and ZBOT science team for model development, technical paper preparation, ZBOT technical activities and NASA reviews. Occasional contact with department chair and other faculty regarding technical consultation, reporting progress, presentation.

University: Occasional contact with computer services and computational cluster personnel regarding simulations.

External: Weekly contact with NASA GRC for preparation of science requirements, NASA project reviews, technical presentation and attending weekly project meetings. Contact with ZIN Technologies for definition and description of science requirements, review of hardware specs and attending weekly ZBOT project meetings.

Students: Little or no contact with students.



This position has no direct supervision of staff.



Education and Experience: A Doctorate and 2 years of related research experience OR Master’s degree and 4 years of related research experience in mechanical or chemical engineer in the area of CFD and flow & heat transfer. US Citizenship or Permanent Residency is required.



  1. Comprehensive knowledge in thermal fluids sciences and themodynamics.
  2. Intimate hands-on working knowledge with ANSYS/Fluent CFD code or other multipurpose CFD codes
  3. Strong ability in writing customized UDFs for CFD codes such as the ANSYS/Fluent
  4. Strong coding ability in Fortran, Python and C++ are critical.
  5. Hands-on and expert experience with MatLab, Ensight, Design Modeler, Gambit,
  6. Working experience with Engineering CAD package
  7. Excellent team work and interpersonal skills
  8. Precise, organized, analytical and quick study
  9. Good writing and presentation skills. Ability to interact with supervisor colleagues and customers face to face.
  10. Ability to meet consistent attendance.



Work will be performed at NASA Glenn Research Center and requires careful adherence to NASA safety and security regulation especially with regard to IT security and dealing with non-classified but sensitive material and export control. Weekly travel from NASA to ZIN technologies and occasional travel to conference locations are required.




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Job No:
Posted: 2/16/2021
Application Due: 4/1/2021
Work Type: