Position: Autonomy Engineer

Location: New Rochelle, NY

Salary Range: $120k-$150k annually

Company Overview

Performance Drone Works (PDW) is at the forefront of creating custom small unmanned aerial systems (sUAS) for the modern warfighter. PDW is proudly American-owned, with all design, engineering and manufacturing of their products taking place domestically.

Position Overview

PDW seeks a skilled Autonomy Engineer to join their team, contributing to the next wave of system and tool development for their upcoming product lines. The successful candidate will play a pivotal role in the research, development and design of the most innovative algorithms and software used for autonomous drone technology. The ideal candidate is highly experienced in general autonomy and has a strong background related to perception, path and motion planning, and control.

Core Responsibilities

The ideal candidate will thrive working in an innovative and fast-paced work environment, be able to deal with problems on the fly and deliver thoughtfully designed and highly adaptable systems.

  • Work directly with fellow experienced Autonomy Engineers to aid in researching, prototyping, and implementing algorithms and software.
  • Perform sensor characterization, research, calibration, and modeling.
  • Research develops, and provides technical oversight to the development of Computer-vision-based perception, prediction, machine learning, object detection and recognition, path planning, trajectory generation, and control algorithms for autonomous flight.
  • Design algorithms and simulations in MATLAB, Simulink, ROS, Gazebo, etc. platforms.
  • Write space and time optimized software in C/C++, and parallel software in CUDA / OpenCL.
  • Assist with validation efforts for algorithms and software.


  • Master's Degree in Computer Science, Computer Engineering, Electrical Engineering, or a technically related Robotics field
  • At least 2 years of experience in two or more of the Autonomy fields: Perception, Prediction, Path Planning, Trajectory Generation, Control, Parallel Computing, or High-Performance Computing.
  • Demonstrable experience designing and implementing Optical Flow and VIO algorithms.
  • Sensor expertise in Radar, Lidar, Cameras, ToF cameras, Rangefinder's, IMU, etc., for modeling, processing, and noise identification.
  • Experienced implementing SLAM and EKF-SLAM algorithms for GPS-denied environments.
  • Experienced in designing and implementing path planning algorithms such as A*, D*, RRT, RRT*, PRM, etc.
  • Familiarity with ROS, Gazebo, RVIZ, PCL, CUDA, TensorFlow, TensorRT, Pytorch, Caffe, g2o, Ceres, GTSAM.
  • Experienced in the research, development, and implementation of optimal sampling-based probabilistic complete robotic motion and path planning algorithms.
  • Demonstrable experience in generating dynamically feasible trajectories and optimum trajectories with UAVs.
  • Experience with training and deploying real-time deep neural networks.
  • Experience with optimizing deep neural networks for Embedded devices.
  • Familiarity with PX4 and/or Ardupilot Flight Controller (FC) Software.
  • Knowledgeable in graph theory, decision theory, excellent computer science fundamentals, and advanced knowledge in data structures and algorithms.
  • Excellent C/C++ programming skills.
  • Exposure to MATLAB / Simulink code generation.
  • Ability to design space and time-efficient algorithms and software.
  • Ability to implement embedded vision algorithms using OpenCV, C/C++, and OpenCL/CUDA.
  • Experience with source code control and hosting platforms such as GitHub or Bitbucket.

ITAR Requirement

In compliance with International Traffic Arms Regulations (ITAR), candidates must be U.S. Citizens, U.S. Permanent Residents (Green Card holders) or individuals granted asylee/refugee status as defined by 8 U.S.C. 1324b(a)(3).

Compensation and Benefits

PDW values their team, and they offer a compensation package reflective of your experience and capabilities. Benefits include:

  • Comprehensive BCBS medical, dental, and vision coverage; 80% sponsored by the company.
  • Safe Harbor 401(K) with company match.
  • Equity participation.
  • A relaxed work environment that encourages individuality and innovation.
  • Competitive salary, generous paid time off (PTO), and flexible leave options.