Project Scientists Support Expert - EMERALD

Location: Springfield, VA

Department: Engineering and Analysis Solutions

Type: Full Time

Min. Experience: Mid Level

Position contingent upon contract award

Project Scientists Support Expert – EMERALD

Position requires qualifications and skills in a variety of scientific disciplines in support of advanced research and development activities (basic research, applied research and advanced technology development).  Qualified individuals must hold a degree in a core scientific discipline or demonstrated knowledge and expertise in core disciplines.  Core disciplines include, but are not limited to, photogrammetry, geodesy, mathematics, statistics, physics and image sciences.  Scientists must be capable of independent research and development as well as leadership of small teams.   The focus of effort includes conducting research and development in new areas through innovative ideas and experimentation.  This position will apply expertise from core sciences that support NGA’s mission to meet its requirements and provide the best solution to the broader NSG.

Duties include:

  • Assist with conducting research and experimentation in support of the core sciences within NGA (e.g. photogrammetry, remote sensing, mathematical and statistical).
  • Assist with designing and executing experiments to proof-of-concepts in both laboratory and operational environments.
  • Apply scientific domain knowledge to the development of innovative and original algorithms and techniques that are required for the success of Agency as the Functional Manager for GEOINT.
  • Assist with conducting research and development projects in which the scientific research aspect dominates. This may include working with contractor scientists and other domain experts.
  • Explain important and relevant scientific issues and trends to non-technical audiences (e.g., operational, leadership and management personnel). Provides this information both verbally and in writing. Take the initiative in identifying these issues and trends and prepares research proposals for management.
  • Assist with the forming of strategic technology investments and feasibility of research areas and projects.
  • Assist with evaluating, document and deliver reports concerning the fundamental physical processes associated with mission problems of interest; assist in the research into algorithms that address those problem areas; and participate in general image analysis to understand the link between physical processes and their SAR response.
  • Assist with demonstrating and documenting the ability to translate mission requirements into information terms and to support SAR imagery analysis.
  • Assist with demonstrating and documenting new algorithms based on reliable physical / phenomenological characteristics in SAR and participate in algorithm performance valuation.
  • Assist with analyzing new data, new scenes and data from new sensors, and provide expert analysis of SAR anomalies and general scene understanding.  The results of these data analyses may be in the form of Technical Reports.
  • Assist with demonstrating defining, computing and delivering metrics to assess the quality of existing and future SAR image data, the performance of sensor calibration methods, SAR image formation process and post-processing.  These may include airborne / space and future sensors; UHF/VHF, C-band, X and Ku Band ranges; and Polarimetric SAR (POLSAR) sensors.  Examples may include TRACER, GOTCHA, VADER, LynxSAR, MB-SAR, TerraSAR-X, RadarSAT2 and CosmoSkyMed.
  • Assist with demonstrating evaluating image data, algorithms, and user interfaces; define and document SAR image analysis procedures to assist in solving mission problems.
  • Assist with demonstrating assessing and documenting the level and kinds of information that can be extracted from SAR data with the help of additional non-literal processing on complex and phase history, and identify information needs not readily met through visual analysis.
  • Assist with documenting and evaluating SAR data to provide feedback on artifacts present in the data and their impact on visual analysis, and guidance with respect to algorithm needs.
  • Assist with defining and delivering procedures for the effective extraction of information of interest from SAR data. These procedures may include the application of processing algorithms as well as analysis steps.
  • Assist with defining ideas and concepts developed through SAR image and data analysis, and deliver and document training of new procedures and algorithms to support operational image analysis.
  • Assist with drafting a series of technical guidance documents (TGDs).  The TGDs shall cover the following topics: Overview and Methodologies; Predictive Statistics; Sample Statistics; Specification and Validation; Estimators and Quality Control; Monte-Carlo Simulation; External Data and Quality Assessment; Glossary.
  • Asist with establishing and supporting a Review Team of photogrammetrists and other scientists who have the technical knowledge of geolocation accuracy procedures and familiarity with NSG requirements needed to review drafts of the TGDs and provide comments and suggestions for improvement.  Convene the Review Team as needed to conduct Technical Exchange Meetings (TEMs) for discussing technical issues or problems with the TGDs as they are drafted and revised.
  • The contractor shall coordinate efforts with the WGS/Geomatics Standards Focus Group (WGSG FG) Chair and other members of the GEOINT Standards Working Group (GWG) to ensure that the TGDs comply with formatting requirements for standardization documents.
  • The contractor shall submit finalized TGDs to the WGSG FG Chair for the review-and-comment process required for TGD approval as official NGA Publications and GWG Standardization Documents.  The contractor shall provide technical guidance to the WGSG FG Chair to enable the adjudication of comments.
  • The contractor shall draft a revision of MIL STD 600001 to reflect the new technical guidance for NSG geospatial data accuracy as recorded in the TGDs.  The revision shall follow current requirements for formatting.
  • Assist with training users in new or modified software. 
  • Assist with determining system performance standards. 
  • Assist with analyzing user needs and software requirements.
  • Assist with technical studies on geospatial intelligence and image processing systems. 
  • Assist with modifying existing software to correct errors, or improve performance, and to document and maintain software functionality.

Skills and Experience:


  • Bachelor’s degree within a core science area.
  • Demonstrated specialized experience with NTM, commercial and airborne sources and exploitation capabilities.
  • Computer programming skills in multiple languages.
  • Demonstrated specialized experience in the intelligence community focused on state of the art GEOINT research and developmental activities.
  • Demonstrated specialized experience in researching and developing geospatial solutions for photogrammetry and remote sensing.
  • Demonstrated specialized experience in the following areas: Geospatial Intelligence (GEOINT), Image Intelligence (IMINT), Open Source Intelligence (OSINT), and deep-space projects.


  • Demonstrated specialized experience working with various Intelligence Community and Demonstrated specialized experience in the intelligence and defense communities working on state of the art research activities.
  • Advanced Degree(s) in a technical or scientific field.
  • Published author in peer review journal(s).
  • Demonstrated understanding of software engineering tools to write well designed, testable, efficient code. 
  • Demonstrated specialized experience developing and modifying software solutions by studying information needs, conferring with users, studying system flows and work processes.  
  • Demonstrated specialized experience working with other systems analysts and programmers to design system. 
  • Demonstrated specialized Experience with, and knowledge of Microsoft Developer Studio, modular software, and object-oriented design.
  • Demonstrated understanding of.NET development (VB, .NET, C, C++, C#, Java, JavaScript) 
  • Demonstrated understanding of Relational Databases, SQL, and ORM technologies) 
  • Demonstrated specialized experience with the geosciences (Photogrammetry, Remote Sensing, Geodesy, GIS) and GIS software; i.e. ArcGIS, MapInfo. 
  • Demonstrated understanding of cloud computing platforms; i.e. AWS, and XML schema design.
  • Demonstrated specialized Experience working in an Agile environment. 
  • Demonstrated understanding of NGA’s IT environment, i.e. Globe, DevOps, App Store, and C2S. 


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