Embedded Software Engineer

  • Planet
  • San Francisco, CA
  • May 21, 2020

Job Description

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 headquartered in San Francisco, California, Earth.

About The Role:

The Onboard Software Team is responsible for creating and maintaining the guidance and control software for our fleet of Dove satellites. We also build tools, payload software and radio software! As a member of the OSW team, you will be working to develop and improve the software that runs our fleet of observation satellites! This will involve working with a broad variety of disciplines, including our top-notch payload, electrical design and mission control teams!

Impact You'll Own:

  • Design, develop, test and debug software for our fleet of satellites! Including software for both embedded microcontrollers and embedded Linux.
  • Build and maintain software tools to support the satellite test and production environment.
  • Promote and improve procedures for remote and safe updates of satellite software
  • Collaborate in cross-functional teams to validate and improve satellite systems.
  • Implement metrics to track and improve software quality and maturity.

What You Bring:

  • Proven history of thinking through complex, interdisciplinary problems and debugging to identify and correct root causes
  • 3-5 years of programming experience in C. Ideally, development for microcontrollers and/or low-level Linux applications.
  • Experience with python programming and python package deployment
  • Strong background in Linux, including shell mastery
  • Experience with system validation that includes embedded software and/or remote systems
  • Comfortable with common open-source development tools (GCC, make) in a Linux environment.
  • Proponent of continuous integration and automated testing
  • Familiar with build systems for Linux and embedded targets. Linux software packaging and distribution (dpkg/apt or similar). Experience with DVCS such as git or mercurial

What Makes You Stand Out:

  • Experience with previous aerospace projects or cubesats!
  • Experience in the mobile, networking, medical, robotics, IoT, or similar embedded device industries.
  • Experience with some of our key technical areas, such as cameras or other image sensors, high-speed radio communication, FPGA development, or guidance, navigation and control.
  • Knowledge of industry standards for software quality practices.
  • Experience building embedded OS distributions.
  • Contribution to open source projects, especially small-device or similar.
  • Cool side projects, great life stories, robot owners

Benefits While Working at Planet:

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

Some Press About Us:

Our CEO, Will Marshall featured on TED and at a recent Dreamforce Talk
“Planet: Bringing Space Back Down to Earth”
"The All-Seeing Eye in the Sky video" Bloomberg Businessweek video
“Planet And Rocket Lab Create Mission Patch To Honor Women In Aerospace” —Planet Blog

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.

Will sponsor Visa


Organization type



51-200 employees  


Supporting Catalysts