Aerospace Engineer (Powerplants)

Washington, D.C
Sep 24, 2021
Oct 01, 2021
Engineer, IT, QA Engineer
Full Time


This position is located in the Office of Aviation Safety, Aviation Engineering Division. The incumbent will participate and direct technical analyses of general aviation and air carrier accidents and incidents in the specialty area of turbine and reciprocating engines, propellers, fuel systems, engine accessories, and auxiliary power units.
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As an Aerospace Engineer (Powerplants), GS-0861-14, you will:

Participates and directs technical analyses of general aviation and air carrier accident and incidents in the specialty area of turbine and reciprocating engines, propellers, fuel systems, engine accessories, and auxiliary power units.

Serves as Group Chairman, documenting and analyzing airworthiness issues potentially involved in accidents and develops accident prevention strategies. Coordinates efforts with other Group Chairman, the IIC, and the Team Lead to assure thoroughness of all investigations and that necessary documentation is accomplished as a result of the investigative activity.

Prepares factual and analytical reports covering specialty area on each accident. Correlates these findings with those of other Group Chairmen to assist in identifying the causes(s) of the accident.

Assists the IIC and report writers in the preparation of the Safety Board's accident report with particular emphasis on the accuracy of factual information and the logic of analyses of the evidence from the investigation. Critically reviews drafts of the Safety Board's accident reports and provides constructive and timely feedback to improve the technical accuracy and logic presented in these reports.

Researches and develops appropriate safety recommendation to correct hazardous or unsafe conditions using information obtained in the course of investigations, personal observations, and knowledge of current aviation engineering trends and developments.

Acts as an advisor to the US Accredited Representative on foreign investigations. May be required to act as the US Accredited Representative to foreign investigations.

Makes presentations and responds to Member's questions at Board meetings following the conclusion of major investigations or projects.

Work Environment:
The incumbent supports major go-team launches as well as significant international investigations. Major go-team launch teams commonly travel on the Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) jet from Reagan National Airport within two hours after an accident notification is received. Timely arrival at the scene of a major accident allows for timely documentation of a wreckage; a delay in this effort can have significant impacts, such as impeding the re-opening of an airport. International travel by US Government employees frequently requires the issuance of a visa from the host country, which is most efficiently obtained at the embassies located in Washington, DC. Additionally, security concerns in many locations make it essential that the investigative team travel together.

Physical Demands:
Occasionally the aircraft wreckage may contain hazardous materials that may be burning by the time the investigator arrives on-the-scene; therefore, the incumbent may be exposed to a variety of weather conditions and other environmental discomforts such as remote, rugged, snow, rain, temperature extremes, swampy or mountainous areas and hostile settings and may have to wear a hardhat, safety shoes, goggles, gloves, and other protective equipment.

Travel Required

Occasional travel - You may be expected to travel for this position.

Supervisory status

Promotion Potential


Conditions of Employment

  • U.S. Citizenship
  • Males born after 12/31/59 must be registered for Selective Service
  • Resume and supporting documents (see "How to Apply" section.)
  • Suitability for Federal employment
  • Financial Interest in transportation enterprises will be evaluated on a case by case basis
  • Bargaining Unit Position: YES
  • Direct Deposit is required.
  • Probationary period may be required.
  • You may be required to complete a Confidential Financial Disclosure Report, OGE-450, upon entering the position and annually.
  • This position is being announced concurrently under Government-Wide procedures under Vacancy Number AS-11195205-21-AE. To be considered under both Public (US Citizens) and Government-Wide procedures, you must apply to both announcements.


You must meet the "Education Requirements" and the "Specialized Experience" to qualify for this position as described below.

You MUST have one year of specialized experience equivalent to at least the GS-13 grade level in the Federal service (experience may have been gained in the private sector), performing the following types of specialized experience defined as (1) Working knowledge of Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) regulations requirements (Part 23, 25, 33 and 43), turbine engine maintenance experience (121 Airline operating environment); (2) Thorough understanding of aircraft systems, components, structures and powerplants; (3) Strong communication skills and ability to explain technical concepts to non-technical and senior decision-makers; (4) Ability to interpret engineering schematics, engine installation instructions, and other technical documentation related to propulsion and mechanical systems, and to use these skills to communicate new system integration concepts; and (5) Interpersonal skills to establish and maintain effective collaborative working relationships in multi-agency investigations.

For more information see link:

In addition to the education and specialize experience, you must possess the skill to write comprehensive complex investigations technical reports. If selected, for an interview, you will be required to provide a writing sample.

NOTE: Your resume must clearly show the specialized experience related to this position. Failure to demonstrate how you possess the specialized experience will results in an "Ineligible" rating.


This position has a positive education requirement: Applicants submit MUST provide copy of their college or university transcripts(s) or other documentation to support your educational claims. Unless otherwise stated: (1) official or unofficial transcripts are acceptable, or (2) you may submit a list with all your courses, grades, semester, year, and credit for the course. All materials must be submitted by the closing date of the announcement.


Degree: Engineering. To be acceptable, the program must: (1) lead to a bachelor's degree in a school of engineering with at least one program accredited by ABET; or (2) include differential and integral calculus and courses (more advanced than first-year physics and chemistry) in five of the following seven areas of engineering science or physics: (a) statics, dynamics; (b) strength of materials (stress-strain relationships); (c) fluid mechanics, hydraulics; (d) thermodynamics; (e) electrical fields and circuits; (f) nature and properties of materials (relating particle and aggregate structure to properties); and (g) any other comparable area of fundamental engineering science or physics, such as optics, heat transfer, soil mechanics, or electronics.


Combination of education and experience
-- college-level education, training, and/or technical experience that furnished (1) a thorough knowledge of the physical and mathematical sciences underlying engineering, and (2) a good understanding, both theoretical and practical, of the engineering sciences and techniques and their applications to one of the branches of engineering. The adequacy of such background must be demonstrated by one of the following:

Professional registration or licensure -- Current registration as an Engineer Intern (EI), Engineer in Training (EIT), or licensure as a Professional Engineer (PE) by any State, the District of Columbia, Guam, or Puerto Rico. Absent other means of qualifying under this standard, those applicants who achieved such registration by means other than written test (e.g., State grandfather or eminence provisions) are eligible only for positions that are within or closely related to the specialty field of their registration. For example, an applicant who attains registration through a State Board's eminence provision as a manufacturing engineer typically would be rated eligible only for manufacturing engineering positions.

Written Test -- Evidence of having successfully passed the Fundamentals of Engineering (FE) examination or any other written test required for professional registration by an engineering licensure board in the various States, the District of Columbia, Guam, and Puerto Rico.

Specified academic courses -- Successful completion of at least 60 semester hours of courses in the physical, mathematical, and engineering sciences and that included the courses specified in the basic requirements under paragraph A. The courses must be fully acceptable toward meeting the requirements of an engineering program as described in paragraph A.

Related curriculum -- Successful completion of a curriculum leading to a bachelor's degree in an appropriate scientific field, e.g., engineering technology, physics, chemistry, architecture, computer science, mathematics, hydrology, or geology, may be accepted in lieu of a bachelor's degree in engineering, provided the applicant has had at least 1 year of professional engineering experience acquired under professional engineering supervision and guidance. Ordinarily there should be either an established plan of intensive training to develop professional engineering competence, or several years of prior professional engineering-type experience, e.g., in interdisciplinary positions. (The above examples of related curricula are not all-inclusive.)

GENERAL EDUCATION: All academic degrees and coursework must be completed at an institution that has obtained accreditation or pre-accreditation status from an accrediting body recognized by the U.S. Department of Education for it to be credited towards qualifications. For a list of schools that meet these criteria, see Applications submitted without the required supporting documents will not be accepted. An unofficial transcript; statement from the institution's registrar, dean, or other appropriate official; or equivalent documentation is acceptable at the time of application. Education submitted must be appropriately accredited by an accredited body recognized by the Secretary of the U.S. Department of Education. For additional information, refer to the U.S. Department of Education web site at:

FOREIGN EDUCATION: If you are using education completed in foreign colleges or universities to meet the qualification requirements, you must show the education credentials have been evaluated by a private organization that specializes in interpretation of foreign education programs and such education has been deemed equivalent to that gained in an accredited U.S. education program; or full credit has been given for the courses at a U.S. accredited college or university. For further information, visit:

Additional information

  • The National Transportation Safety Board (NTSB) offers a comprehensive benefits package that includes, in part, paid vacation, sick leave, holidays and various benefits as well as work life amenities such as alternate work schedules, telework, flextime, fitness and transit benefits.
  • Moving expenses associated with permanent change of station (PCS) ARE NOT authorized for this position.
  • If you left Federal Employment and received a buy out and you are selected for this position, you may be required to repay the full amount of the payment.
  • Career Transition Assistance Programs: These programs apply to employees who have been involuntarily separated from a Federal service position within the competitive service or Federal service employees whose positions have been deemed surplus or no longer needed. To receive selection priority for this position, you must: (1) meet CTAP or ICTAP eligibility criteria; (2) meet the basic qualification standards (including minimum educational and experience requirements; (3) be rated well-qualified for the position with a score of 90 and above on the rating criteria for this position; and, (4) submit the appropriate documentation ( to support your CTAP or ICTAP eligibility. For more information visit:
  • Note: ICTAP eligibles must submit one of the following as proof of eligibility for the special selection priority: a separation notice; a "Notice of Personnel Action" (SF-50) documenting separation; an agency certification that you cannot be placed after injury compensation has been terminated; an OPM notification that your disability annuity has been terminated; OR a Military Department or National Guard Bureau notification that you are retired under 5 U.S.C. 8337(h) or 8456.
  • All qualification requirements must be met by the closing date of this announcement. Additional information on the qualification requirements is outlined in the OPM Qualifications Standards Handbook of General Schedule Positions. OPM's web site at .
  • Telework may be authorized on a case-by-case basis.
  • Multiple and subsequent vacancies may be filled from this announcement.
  • NTSB uses E-Verify to confirm the employment eligibility of all newly hired employees. To learn more about E-Verify, including your rights and responsibilities, please visit .

How You Will Be Evaluated

You will be evaluated for this job based on how well you meet the qualifications above.

Applicants will be rated using the Category Rating System. Your resume and supporting documentation will be compared to your responses to the Screening Questions/Occupational Questionnaire for consistency. Applicants must first meet any mandatory education/licensure/certification requirements before experience is evaluated. Failure to meet any mandatory requirement as outlined in the qualifications section will disqualify you from further consideration. Based on the extent and quality of your experience, education, and training in relation to these competencies, you will be placed into one of the following three categories:
  • Highly Qualified - Applicants with a background that demonstrates a superior level of possession of all competencies.·
  • Well Qualified - Applicants with a background that demonstrates a satisfactory level of possession of the competencies.·
  • Qualified - Applicants possessing the specialized experience described above and any education or selective factor if also required.
The Category Rating Method does not add Veterans' preference points or apply the "rule of three", but protects the rights of veterans by placing them ahead of non-preference eligibles within each category. Documented preference eligibles who meet minimum qualification/eligibility requirements and who have a compensable service-connected disability of at least 10% will be listed in the highest quality category, except when the position being filled is scientific or professional at the GS-9 grade level or higher.

We will review your resume and supporting documentation to determine your eligibility and qualifications. Experience must be clearly reflected in your resume. If mandatory education/licensure/certification requirements are met, your application will be further evaluated based on training, experience and other factors critical to successful job performance such as:

  • Accident Investigation
  • Aerospace Engineering
  • Interpersonal Skills
  • Oral Communication
  • Problem Solving
  • Written Communication

If a determination is made that you have rated yourself higher than is supported by your resume, you will be assigned a rating commensurate to your described experience or your application may be removed from further consideration.

Background checks and security clearance

Security clearance
Not Required

Drug test required

Position sensitivity and risk
High Risk (HR)

Trust determination process

Required Documents

You are encouraged to apply online. Applying online will allow you to review and track the status of your application. The following documents are required for a COMPLETE APPLICATION PACKAGE:

To fully determine eligibility, all applicable documents listed below must be submitted. Failure to submit any of the below documentation may result in your disqualification from further consideration.
  • Resume: Your resume should include relevant experience and dates (month/day/year) of employment and work schedule for each (e.g., part-time XX hours per week or full-time). Please see OPM's video on Resume Writing Tips:
  • Responses to the questionnaire
  • Transcripts (official/unofficial) from an accredited College or University or a list with all your courses, grades, semester, year, and credit for the course.
  • If applicable, a current registration as an Engineer Intern (EI), Engineer in Training (EIT), or licensure as a Professional Engineer (PE) by any State, the District of Columbia, Guam, or Puerto Rico.
  • If applicable, written test as evidence of having successfully passed the fundamentals of Engineering (FE) examination or any other written test required for professionals.
  • DD-214 (member copy 4), SF-15 Form and VA letter, or certification of expected discharge or release from active duty from Veterans for consideration under Veteran hiring authorities.
  • Career Transition Assistance Program/Interagency Career Transition Assistance Program Documentation: (1) Proof of Eligibility; (2) Your latest performance rating showing a rating of at least "fully successful" (level 3); AND (3) Your most recent Notification of Personnel Action, Standard Form 50 (SF-50), or equivalent personnel action, showing your tenure, position occupied, and duty station. For more information visit:

If you are relying on your education to meet qualification requirements:

Education must be accredited by an accrediting institution recognized by the U.S. Department of Education in order for it to be credited towards qualifications. Therefore, provide only the attendance and/or degrees from schools accredited by accrediting institutions recognized by the U.S. Department of Education .

Failure to provide all of the required information as stated in this vacancy announcement may result in an ineligible rating or may affect the overall rating.

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