Senior Manager, Composites Production | Rocket Lab (2024)

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Job Ref: 4933161003 | Type: Regular

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About The Role


Rocket Lab is a global leader in launch and space systems. The rockets and satellites we build and launch enable some of the most ambitious and vital space missions globally, supporting scientific exploration, Earth observation and missions to combat climate change, national security, and exciting new technology demonstrations. Our Electron rocket has provided reliable access to orbit since 2018, becoming one of the most frequently launched rockets in the world. Neutron will be our next rocket on the launch pad, an advanced 13-tonne payload class, reusable rocket to launch the mega constellations of the future. Our space systems business includes our extensive line of satellites and components that have enabled more than 1,700 missions including the James Webb Space Telescope, NASA Psyche Mission, Artemis I, Mars Ingenuity helicopter, and more.

Join our pioneering team and launch your career to new heights!


The Senior Manager, Composites Production will be based out of Rocket Lab’s SolAero facility in Albuquerque NM. The Senior Manager, Composites Production will provide expertise and guidance to the production, engineering and quality staff as it relates to new employee onboarding, certification / training, workflow, manufacturing execution, and developing new processes and improving production capacity and capability. The Senior Manager, Composites Production will help research and evaluate new material, process, and equipment options for all aspects of composites production to include: layup, consolidation, curing, machining, substrate assembly and inspection.


  • Leverage and collaborate with existing composites expertise from across global Rocket Lab teams.
  • Provide strategic direction to the composite production leadership team on product development, capacity planning and production output.  
  • Mentor and support the staff within the production department to be motivated, effective and efficient in their roles, and provide opportunities for growth and development.  
  • Collaborate with production and quality leadership to establish KPIs to track cycle-time, throughput, COPQ, and actual vs budget labor standards.
  • Establish a formal new employee onboarding program to train and certify to standard operating procedures. Work with existing staff to grow skills and certifications in-line with employee’s career ambition/talent and business need.
  • Help ensure Engineering delivers well-documented designs, configuration and procedures to the manufacturing floor to build composite components that meet customer specifications.
  • Develop and execute a strategic roadmap for investigating improved materials, processes, equipment, and technology for attaining new capabilities.
  • Collaborate with Business Development and R&D to expand markets and assist with new product development and customer proposals.
  • Interface with a variety of engineering groups and business development to identify proper material selection for engineering structures, components, and subassemblies. Engage with materials and equipment vendors as needed.
  • Research, qualify, and implement new composites manufacturing processes and materials (film adhesives, pre-pregs, primers, potting adhesives, etc.) where needed to improve capabilities, reduce cost, or improve manufacturability of products.


  • 12+ years experience in Composites development and production in aerospace or a closely related industry.
  • Strong knowledge of conventional and emerging composite manufacturing processes.
  • Experience developing and improving processes, increasing production output and capability.
  • Expertise in composites as it pertains to improving processes and evaluating materials.


  • Experience in qualification and acceptance testing of composite structural components
  • Experience with 3D CAD software and tooling design. 
  • Experience in both Autoclave and Out-of-Autoclave composite manufacturing techniques. 
  • Experience with Non-Destructive Testing/Inspection of composite components. 


  • Specific vision abilities required by this job include close vision, distance vision, peripheral vision, depth perception, and the ability to focus.
  • Regularly required to sit, use hands and fingers, operate computer keyboard and controls, and communicate verbally and in writing.
  • Must be physically able to commute to buildings
  • Occasional exposure to dust, fumes and moderate levels of noise.


We’re on a mission to unlock the potential of space to improve life on Earth, but that’s not an easy task. It takes hard work, determination, relentless innovation, teamwork, grit, and an unwavering commitment to achieving what others often deem impossible. Our people out-think, out-work and out-pace. We pride ourselves on having each other’s backs, checking our egos at the door, and rolling up our sleeves on all tasks big and small. We thrive under pressure, work to tight deadlines, and our focus is always on how we can deliver, rather than dwelling on the challenges that stand in the way.

Important information:


To conform to U.S. Government space technology export regulations, including the International Traffic in Arms Regulations (ITAR), Rocket Lab Employees must be a U.S. citizen, lawful U.S. permanent resident (i.e., current Green Card holder), or lawfully admitted into the U.S. as a refugee or granted asylum, or be eligible to obtain the required authorizations from the U.S. Department of State and/or the U.S. Department of Commerce, as applicable. Learn more about ITAR here.

Rocket Lab provides equal employment opportunities to all employees and applicants for employment and prohibits discrimination and harassment of any type without regard to race, color, religion, age, sex, national origin, disability status, genetics, protected veteran status, sexual orientation, gender identity or expression, or any other characteristic protected by federal, state or local laws. This policy applies to all terms and conditions of employment at Rocket Lab, including recruiting, hiring, placement, promotion, termination, layoff, recall, transfer, leaves of absence, compensation and training.

Applicants requiring a reasonable accommodation for the application/interview process for a job in the United States should contact Giulia Biow at dedicated resource is intended solely to assist job seekers with disabilities whose disability prevents them from being able to apply/interview. Only messages left for this purpose will be considered. A response to your request may take up to two business days.


For security reasons background checks will be undertaken prior to any employment offers being made to an applicant. These checks will include nationality checks as it is a requirement of this position that you be eligible to access equipment and data regulated by the United States' International Traffic in Arms Regulations.

Under these Regulations, you may be ineligible for this role if you do not hold citizenship of Australia, Japan, New Zealand, Switzerland, the European Union or a country that is part of NATO, or if you hold ineligible dual citizenship or nationality. For more information on these Regulations, click hereITAR Regulations.

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Senior Manager, Composites Production | Rocket Lab (2024)


Who is the director of production at Rocket Lab? ›

Lee King - Director - NZ Production - Rocket Lab | LinkedIn.

What does Rocket Lab USA do? ›

Our capabilities span the space economy, including satellite design and manufacture, space software and components, and reliable launch services. We started with small launch, pioneering an industry-defining launch vehicle, Electron, now the second most frequently launched U.S. rocket.

Who is Rocket Lab owned by? ›

About Rocket Lab

Rocket Lab is an aerospace company founded in 2006 by New Zealander, Peter Beck.

How old is the Rocket Lab? ›

In 2006, Mr. Beck founded Rocket Lab and led its efforts to successfully launch Atea-1 in 2009, which we believe is the first commercially-developed rocket to reach space from the Southern Hemisphere.

Is Peter Beck married? ›

Personal life. Beck is married to Gay and they have three adult children.

Does Rocket Lab compete with SpaceX? ›

Several space ventures, including Jeff Bezos's Blue Origin, Rocket Lab and the United Launch Alliance — the joint venture of Lockheed Martin and Boeing — are poised to debut new heavy-lift rockets this year to compete with SpaceX's Falcon 9 workhorse.

Is Rocket Lab making money? ›

Rocket Lab USA Inc (NASDAQ:RKLB) released its first quarter financial results on May 6, 2024, showcasing a substantial year-on-year revenue growth of 69% and a sequential quarterly growth of 55%.

How many employees does Rocket Lab have? ›

Compare RKLB With Other Stocks
Rocket Lab USA Annual Employee Count

Why is Rocket Lab stock dropping? ›

Specifically, Rocket Lab stated that one of its rocket launches was postponed, leading to a negative revenue impact. Subsequently, this hit on the top line aggravated concerns about viability in the bottom line.

Is Rocket Lab losing money? ›

Analysts forecast the manufacturer of Electron rockets would lose $0.11 per share on sales of $95 million in the first quarter of 2024. In fact, the company reported a loss of only $0.09 per share (but still a loss) and sales of only $92.7 million (but still 69% year-over-year growth)!

Who is the CFO of Rocket Lab? ›

Adam Spice serves as the CFO of Rocket Lab USA Inc, a pivotal role that involves overseeing the financial operations of the company.

What is the net worth of Rocket Lab? ›

Total Valuation

Rocket Lab USA has a market cap or net worth of $2.07 billion. The enterprise value is $2.06 billion.

Is Rocket Lab USA a good investment? ›

An ABR of 1.20 approximates between Strong Buy and Buy. Of the 10 recommendations that derive the current ABR, nine are Strong Buy, representing 90% of all recommendations. The ABR suggests buying Rocket Lab USA, but making an investment decision solely on the basis of this information might not be a good idea.

Does Rocket Lab work with NASA? ›

Rocket Lab has launched NASA climate-studying cubesats before. The company lofted the four satellites of the agency's TROPICS constellation, which monitors the evolution of tropical storms, over two Electron launches in May 2023.

How many launch sites does Rocket Lab have? ›

Our Launch Sites

Choose from three launch pads across Rocket Lab's two launch sites. Launch Complex 1 in Mahia, New Zealand, and Launch Complex 2 on Wallops Island, Virginia.

Who actually builds the rockets? ›

Rocket scientists are a type of aerospace engineers. They design, test and manufacture a variety of types of spacecraft and rocket-propelled vehicles, such as orbiting spacecraft and missiles. However, many rocket scientists have a specialty, such as defense systems or space exploration vehicles.

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