NASA Johnson Space Center

Location: Houston, TX

Acoustics Engineering Internship

This position will be within the Human Factors and System Management team, which supports the Acoustics Office at NASA’s Johnson Space Center in Houston, Texas. The team is responsible for ensuring safe, healthy, and habitable vehicle acoustic environments, in which astronaut crews can live, communicate, and work. Considerations for spacecraft acoustic environments include maintaining acceptable background noise levels that balance the need to operate critical environmental systems (fans, pumps, etc.) while also enabling effective communication, providing restful sleep and respite environments, and ensuring adequate alarm audibility. Other considerations include minimizing annoyance type noises such as prevalent tones and impulses. To accomplish these goals, the Acoustics Office verifies that space vehicle environments and integrated hardware meet their acoustic requirements, routinely monitorsacoustic levels within space vehicle environments to ensure safe exposure levels, and implements noise mitigation, as necessary, to address unacceptable noise emissions or environments.  The successful applicant will support this effort by conducting studies of novel acoustic material layups to quantify their effectiveness as mitigation treatments and ensure compatibility with exploration atmosphere requirements of future space vehicle environments and habitats.

Specific Duties include:

Understanding the current acoustic material applications within the International Space Station (ISS) and Orion vehicle, atmospheric differences between ISS, Orion, and future exploration vehicles, and the limitations of current acoustic material applications for future exploration vehicles.
Performing impedance and/or transmission loss testing of acoustic absorption and barrier material layups to quantify their effectiveness as acoustic mitigations and compare measured data to data that exists for current acoustic material layups that are utilized on the ISS and Orion.
Supporting flight-certification activities of novel acoustic material layups, including the coordination of flammability and offgas testing in exploration atmosphere environments.
Routinely interacting with engineers and scientists within and outside of NASA to obtain acoustic material recommendations, samples, or previous testing results. Personnel may also need to interact with onsite labs (e.g., lighting, microbiology) to identify potential impacts of proposed acoustic material layups to these systems.
Maintaining a data repository on the Acoustics Office server of all tested configurations and compiling test results and recommendations into a report and presentation.
Presenting the final results, conclusions, and recommendations of the acoustic material study at an Acoustics Office staff meeting, SF3 staff meeting, and/or Human Systems Engineering & Integration Control Board (HSEICB).
Routine participation in the weekly Acoustics Office staff meeting, SF3 branch meeting, ISS/Orion Acoustics Working Group (AWG), HSEICB, and other branch and division level meetings, as required.
Completing all required training in a timely manner and adhering to the safety and quality standards of KBR and NASA. Personnel will observe all work instructions and ensure the ANCL hazard analysis’ controls are implemented and observed.


The candidate must have at least 2 years of undergraduate experience in acoustics, physics, mechanical engineering, or another closely related technical discipline.  Preferred candidates will have obtained a bachelor's degree in acoustics or a related technical discipline or be currently enrolled in an acoustics-related graduate program.

The candidate should possess knowledge of acoustics, including basic theory and wave propagation, and data post-processing in MATLAB or Excel. Personnel should also have experience with common lab equipment, including but not limited to DC power supplies and multimeters.

The following skills are not required but are considered to be valuable assets to our team:

Knowledge of the principles of architectural acoustics, noise control of fans, pumps, and motors, digital signal processing, acoustic material properties, and transducer selection and utilization.
Experience with acoustic measurement equipment that may include condenser microphones, sound level meters, acoustic dosimeters, acoustic calibrators, and/or data acquisition systems (e.g., Bruel& Kjaer platforms such as PULSE LabShop, and BK Connect).
Basic machine shop knowledge, including the safe use of drills, saws, sanders, and Dremel-type tools.


The candidate must have demonstrated leadership capabilities and be detail oriented. The qualified applicant must also have excellent oral and written communication skills, including effective communication between external groups as well as report writing. Personnel must be a ‘go-getter’ and be able to work independently after initial training as well as collaboratively.

To apply, send an email with an attached resume to

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