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Space Dynamics Laboratory Overview

Logan, UT
501 to 1000 employees
Nonprofit Organization
Aerospace & Defense
$50 to $100 million (USD) per year
Join our team and work at the heart of projects of national importance.

Are you passionate about working on projects that have meaning? Do you want to be a part of making new discoveries, breaking technology boundaries, and protecting the ... Read more

Mission: To advance scientific and defense objectives by researching, developing and characterizing sensor, electronic, and software systems; providing program lifecycle support; and enhancing the education and development of scientists and engineers.

Company Updates

  • SDL Celebrated Our 60th Anniversary Family Style
    In celebration of our 60th anniversary, SDL hosted a fun-filled family party this past weekend. The three-hour event featured lots of food and plenty of activities, including crafts, a tug-of-war, inflatables, a candy cannon, and science demos. (Stephen Dansie and liquid nitrogen are the perfect combination and always a crowd pleaser.) We even had a visit from Big Blue!

    Delivering Mission Success Since 1959

  • Congratulations to all of our USU graduates!

    Space Dynamics Laboratory Honors Graduating Utah State Students

    Thursday, Apr. 25, 2019 Utah State University's Space Dynamics Laboratory recognized 55 employees who are graduating from USU in May during a dinner and reception last night on Innovation Campus in North Logan. "Every year, SDL recognizes the contributions of our student employees and the role they play in enabling our customers to inspire and achieve breakthroughs in science, technology, aeronautics and space exploration," said H.

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Space Dynamics Laboratory – Why Work For Us?

Making A Difference

SDL works with the DoD and industry in protecting our nation and supporting NASA’s vision to “reveal the unknown for the benefit of humankind.”

When you work for SDL, you will be working on projects that provide innovative, world-class sensor systems and supporting technologies to Government and industry. From electro-optical sensors and real-time data reconnaissance systems to calibration services and thermal management systems, SDL delivers the products and services to enable smarter decisions through the collection and analysis of data for science and military applications.

If you have an interest in intelligence, surveillance, and reconnaissance and supporting our warfighters, or perhaps you love space exploration and astronomy, or even if your thing is Earth remote sensing, SDL is the place for you.

Our core areas of expertise are:

  • Ground stations
  • Networking & data assurance
  • Satellite technologies
  • Science & engineering
  • Sensor systems
  • Testing & calibration

For a more in depth look at SDL’s capabilities, visit our website at:

SDL's History

Founded in 1967, the Utah State University Research Foundation is a nonprofit organization owned by Utah State University (USU) and governed by an independent Board of Trustees. The Space Dynamics Laboratory (SDL), a unit of the Research Foundation, traces its origins to the earliest US space experiments using German V-2 rockets at the end of World War II. These experiments, which measured electron density in the upper atmosphere, led to the formation of the Upper Air Research Laboratory (UARL) at the University of Utah in 1948 and the Electro-Dynamics Laboratories (EDL) at Utah State University in 1959. UARL focused on studies of the physical properties of the upper atmosphere, while EDL primarily conducted optical/infrared aerospace research. The two laboratories frequently collaborated, and in 1970, UARL relocated to Utah State University. In 1982 the two laboratories merged to form SDL.

In 1996, the United States Department of Defense (DoD) established University Affiliated Research Centers (UARCs) and designated SDL as one of six in the nation due to our legacy of superior performance and history in delivering innovative, sponsored research and engineering solutions to industry, private organizations, and Government agencies. Currently, SDL is one of 14 UARCs in the nation.

The Research Foundation’s mission is to bridge the gap between discovery, research, and outcomes that benefit the nation and society. Through SDL, the Research Foundation pursues this mission by conducting applied research and engineering development, which leads to technology and systems implementation for end use applications in civil, space, and military applications.

Living in Logan

The Utah State University Research Foundation/Space Dynamics Laboratory is located in North Logan, Utah, a community that offers many opportunities for fun, service, and community involvement.

If you don’t live in Cache Valley already, then you may not know what you are missing. Logan consistently ranks as one of the best cities in the United States to live. Recently it was ranked number four in the top 25 best cities for career opportunities and number 35 in the top 50 college towns in America.

For outdoor activities, it doesn’t get much better. Cache Valley encompasses many trails for hiking, mountain biking, skiing, snowshoeing, and off-roading and offers easy access to National and state recreation areas, such as Bear Lake State Park and Cache National Forest, for camping, swimming, boating, hunting, fishing, and exploring.

Fun continues with many events and festivals hosted by the surrounding area, such as the Utah Festival Opera and Musical Theater, Old Ephraim’s Mountain Man Rendezvous, Cache Valley Storytelling Festival, and the Cruise-in. Additional events include marathons, triathlons, and other races as well as annual fairs and rodeos across the valley. The close proximity to Utah State University also ensures numerous sports, theater, and fine arts events year round.

As an agricultural community, Cache Valley proudly holds a weekly gardeners' market and participates in numerous events celebrating local produce, including Providence Apple Days, Brigham City Peach Days, and Bear Lake Raspberry Days. The foodie scene focuses on locally owned restaurants and stores and locally produced products.


Company Culture

Our employees often point to the nature of our work as one of the keys to their professional satisfaction. We value working hard and contributing to something meaningful, but we also celebrate our professional relationships, families, and personal interests. What do each of these areas mean to us?  The following are just a few examples of what makes us a preferred employer.

Professional Development

  • Shared purpose in work that is important to our nation’s science and military communities
  • Established professional/personal development enrichment framework
  • Employee recognition program
  • Goal to provide clarity in terms of why each individual matters to the organization
  • Lunch and Learn program provides opportunities to learn more about capabilities, work tools and methodologies, and sometimes outside areas of interest
  • 50% tuition break at Utah State University for employees and qualified dependents
  • Student Scholar program for student employees

Workplace Environment

  • Activities that unify the organization, including all-hands meetings and company events, such as Pi Day
  • Ad hoc clubs and lunch time sports groups
  • Monthly newsletter keeps employees informed about what is going on at the lab and often celebrates employee personal acheivments and interests
  • Service awards to celebrate milestone work anniversaries
  • Popcorn Friday

Community Environment and Involvement

  • Long-standing corporate objective to support a wide range of community involvement and charitable endeavors
  • Support of our nation’s military by offering veterans gainful employment and an annual Veterans Day employee event

Family Oriented

  • Headquartered in Utah, which is consistently ranked as one of the top states in the nation to work, raise families, and enjoy incredible outdoor/recreational activities
  • Intent to help our employees achieve an equitable work-life balance, realizing this balance means different things to different people
  • Company events and activities, such as movies or summer BBQs, specifically for employees and their families

Space Dynamics Laboratory Reviews

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Niel Holt
37 Ratings
  • "So great"

    Current Employee - Lab Assistant
    Current Employee - Lab Assistant

    I have been working at Space Dynamics Laboratory part-time


    Great pay, really flexible hours, nice people


    Can be monotonous at time

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Space Dynamics Laboratory Photos

Space Dynamics Laboratory photo of: SDL enjoys sharing accomplishments with the entire family, such as this ICON payload pre-launch viewing.
Space Dynamics Laboratory photo of: SDL's Wide-field Infrared Survey Explorer (WISE) instrument captured the entire night sky in infrared.
Space Dynamics Laboratory photo of: Employee's children and leaders watch as family-built rockets are launched at new building ground breaking.
Space Dynamics Laboratory photo of: Employee families built rockets for the new building ground breaking.
Space Dynamics Laboratory photo of: SDL software engineers collaborating on a flight software program.
Space Dynamics Laboratory photo of: Employees enjoying an company bowling party during the holidays.
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Space Dynamics Laboratory Interviews



Getting an Interview

Getting an Interview





    Accepted Offer
    Positive Experience
    Easy Interview


    I applied online. I interviewed at Space Dynamics Laboratory.


    I got called in and met with two people: the program manager and an engineer. Was asked a few technical questions about modeling and spacial orientation. Was also asked personality questions.

    Interview Questions

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Space Dynamics Laboratory Awards & Accolades

  • Utah Business 40 Under 40 awarded to SDL's Jed Hancock, Civil Space Division Director, Utah Business, 2015
  • 30 Women to Watch - Sharon Giles, Human Resources Director, Utah Business, 2015
  • Utah Governor's Medal, Awarded to Niel Holt, Space Dynamics Laboratory Director, Utah Business, 2015
  • 2017 Seal of Distinction, WorldatWork, 2017
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