About Loon

Loon is on a mission to connect people everywhere by inventing and integrating audacious technology. A network of balloons traveling on the edge of space, Loon combines advancements in materials science, atmospheric modeling, machine learning, and communications systems to expand connectivity to unserved and underserved areas around the world. Loon is one of the newest independent companies within Alphabet.


Loon is seeking an experienced SWE with backend and performance engineering experience to help develop and scale the temporospatial software defined network for land, sea, air, and space. In this role, you’ll develop new algorithms to better optimize the capacity and availability of our fleet of stratospheric balloons, ground stations, and terrestrial network nodes, as well as fleets of satellites operated by our partners.  You’ll also be the performance engineering lead, responsible for profiling performance, identifying bottlenecks, and designing new solutions to support unprecedented scale as we grow our network and onboard additional customers of the infrastructure. For a taste of the groundbreaking solutions we’re building, see this recent article at The Verge covering Loon’s partnership with Telesat to manage network connections for their forthcoming LEO satellite constellation and this coverage of our stratospheric mesh network aiding with connectivity after a recent earthquake in Peru. 


  • Lead efforts on scaling up a production system (currently spanning ~10 jobs / ~100 tasks / 300 GCU) by 2-3 orders of magnitude.
  • Discover current system bottlenecks, and optimize / redesign components to clear bottlenecks.
  • Collaborate with both internal and external technical customers on their specific needs to achieve our mission to Connect People Everywhere.
  • Approximate time split is 20% understanding the technical landscape / 30% prototyping ideas, writing designs, profiling systems / 50% writing production code.

Minimum Qualifications

  • Strong understanding of software performance from a first-principles perspective.
  • Experience optimizing concurrent software, database interactions, distributed state synchronization.
  • Experience designing large scale systems and implementing core components.
  • Fluency in one of {C++, Go, Java}, with interest in developing proficiency in all three.

Preferred Qualifications

  • Experience/Interest with data exploration / analysis (MATLAB/pandas/R -like tools).
  • Experience with frontend technologies, particularly with browser client-side performance.
  • Experience with or interest in aerospace systems including communications satellites.
  • Experience with or interest in networking, including wireless communications and software defined networks.
  • Experience with or interest in real-time flight and network operations.

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