Job description

The Remote Sensing unit of VITO processes petabytes of earth observation data. We primarily specialise in Big Data analysis with the use of machine learning and deep learning techniques in the application workflows. That is our passion: the extraction of information from the vast amounts of incoming images. Information required by our clients. Our extensive group of clients can be found within the domains of land use, civil infrastructure, agriculture, forestry, water management, heritage and ecological development.

To enforce VITO’s remote sensing unit, we’re looking for a Data Engineer to build services and applications. Together with the team you will support remote sensing projects that are executed on openEO, which is an open-source cloud-based service for the processing of huge satellite imagery datasets. You will collaborate with data scientists that are global experts in their fields. This position gives you the opportunity to work on projects with global visibility, focused on supporting the green transition towards a sustainable planet. Your work is used by the European Commission and the European Space Agency, who rely on it to provide timely and accurate information to experts working in the field, trying to have local impact while ensuring food security or fighting climate change.

You'll become part of a talented, dedicated team working in a fast-paced, challenging international environment. A strong technical background in Python programming and data engineering in general is required to support these projects. Knowledge of earth observation applications is a plus, but fast learners that are interested in exploring this domain are more than welcome to apply.

Most user projects use a form of machine learning or artificial intelligence to extract information from satellite imagery. In this role, you continuously interact with internal and external teams that look for efficient ways to train their models and want to run them in production.

You implement techniques such as ML Ops to make these projects run smoothly and efficiently. A keen eye for constant improvement is a must to be successful in your role.

Your responsibilities:

  • You are part of a team of software engineers to develop efficient algorithms, models, back-end extensions, and proof of concepts, with a hands-on mentality.
  • Engage with architects, subject matter experts and project owners to translate their project requirements into data pipelines/workflows and make these run efficiently.
  • Use the openEO ecosystem to create production workflows, analytics applications and data visualization.
  • Implementation of continuous improvements and maintenance activities in workflows and processes.
  • Keep track of the latest developments and technologies in the software, AI and remote sensing world to be able to remain state-of-the-art in our domain.

Job requirements:

  • Master’s degree applied sciences, specialized in computer science or equivalent
  • Profound knowledge in Python programming
  • Proven experience with data engineering is a large asset
  • Understanding of different remote sensing data sets such as the Copernicus Sentinel satellites can be an asset
  • Experience in Continuous Integration, Testing & Automation frameworks
  • Experience in cloud native deployments is a plus
  • Experience in large scale data processing (e.g. Spark) is a plus
  • Excellent command of English, Dutch is a plus

You are a real team player and blend easily in a group. You’ve got an engaging personality, good communication skills and you are self-organized. Strong analytical skills are crucial given that you will participate in an ambitious team where constantly evolving IT and Earth Observation business needs.

Do you want to join us? Please apply, we look forward to your application.


  • We work 'activity-based', our activities bring us to our location. Our headquarter is in Mol. Part-time working from home or a satellite office in Antwerp-Berchem, Ghent or Ostend is possible.
  • A competitive salary with a range of benefits, including allowances, insurance and a modular package of holidays.
  • Innovation is our asset, so it goes without saying that we give our employees the opportunity to take additional training courses and stay up-to-date in their field. You will always have the opportunity to broaden your knowledge and discover new technologies.
  • You will have the opportunity to be part of an organization with an international reputation, known for its cutting-edge technological research and scientific consultancy.
  • With us, you will contribute directly to sustainable developments at local, national and global level through your innovative applications. You provide answers to contemporary societal challenges.
  • Moreover, we highly value a good work-life balance at VITO! This is achieved by adopting a flexible attitude depending on your specific needs.

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