NSF’s NOIRLab is seeking an Assistant Optical Engineer to be part of the Optical Engineering (OE) group, within the Engineering Services (ES) division, a distributed team of 10 optical experts providing excellence in optical design and analysis, optical maintenance and coating for Telescopes.
NOIRLab is a Federally Funded Research and Development Center (FFRDC) and is the US national center for ground-based night-time astronomy. Principally sponsored by the National Science Foundation, NOIRLab operates and provides services across a range of Observatory Programs (including Gemini Observatory) with facilities in three geographic locations: Arizona, Chile and Hawai’i.
The Assistant Optical Engineer will participate in testing, troubleshooting and, maintaining optical systems and coating plants of the NOIRLab programs in Chile. The Assistant Optical Engineer will be responsible for providing expertise to all aspects of optics for telescopes and must apply his/her experience to maximize the performance of existing optical subsystems. Depending on experience, the candidate may be required to participate in instrument development. The working time will be divided between the telescope site and the sea level base facilities.
This position provides a unique opportunity to work in an international collaborative environment and to participate in a wide variety of projects for large and mid-scale observatories. Within the Optical Engineering group, the Assistant Optical Engineer will be primarily assigned to the Mid-Scale Observatory South (MSO-S) a Program of NOIRLab in Chile with regular collaboration with other programs (Gemini). It comprises Cerro Tololo Inter-American Observatory, the Southern Astrophysical Research Telescope (SOAR) and the Small and Medium Astronomical Research Telescope System (SMARTS) on Cerro Tololo. Travel to the US may be required to other NOIRLab facilities for short periods of time.
Planning and execution of mirror cleaning and washing process.
Periodic telescope image quality checks and optical system performance follow-up.
Maintenance and testing of coating plants.
Participates in the coating process across NOIRLab programs.
Participates in planning and execution of telescope and instrument shutdowns.
Optical integration and testing of delicate and complex astronomical instruments.
Troubleshoots malfunctioning optical equipment.
Analyzes data to characterize optical systems and identify causes.
Writes technical reports.
Identifies technical performance gaps.
Works in cross-functional project teams with colleagues in other branches of engineering (mechanics, electronics, software) and other NOIRLab programs.
Keeps up to date with developments in technologies.
Ensures safety regulations are met.
All AURA employees are responsible for the proper management and control of all AURA property within their work area, whether assigned to them or someone else. This responsibility includes reporting any known missing, stolen, or non-working property in their work area to their supervisor or the AURA Property Officer.
Responsible for ensuring compliance with government award terms and conditions assigned to this position or subordinates of this position as defined in the Vela Award Management system
Other duties as assigned by supervisor.
University Degree in Experimental Physics and Photonics/Optical Engineering (Msc) or other Engineering Fields with demonstrated experience in Optics.
Good command of English and/or Spanish: oral, reading and writing
Knowledge of Optical aberration.
Ability to manipulate fragile components, dexterity.
Knowledge of Telescope optics.
Some practical experience with alignment tools.
Ability to work in an interdisciplinary and international environment.
Must have a valid Driver’s License; clean driving record; ability to drive a 4 wheel drive vehicle.
3 years of experience in a similar position.
Professional certification in Optical system design with Zemax Optics Studio.
Knowledge of adaptive optics.
Knowledge of laser systems.
knowledge of opto-mechanics
knowledge with Optical engineering software and/or professional certification in Zemax.
Hands-on laboratory experience, or some observatory experience.
Familiarity with data analysis software (OriginLab, Matlab, Excel, Python).
Ability to present work in conferences.
Knowledge of mechanical software (SolidWorks).
Knowledge of mirror coating process.
The physical demands described here are representative of those that must be met by an employee to successfully perform the essential functions of this job. Reasonable accommodations may be made to enable individuals with disabilities to perform the essential functions.
While performing the duties of this job, the employee is regularly required to sit; use hands to finger, handle, or feel; and talk or hear.
The employee is occasionally required to stand; walk; reach with hands and arms and stoop; kneel; crouch; or crawl.
The employee must regularly lift and /or move up to 10 pounds and occasionally lift and/or move up to 25 pounds.
Specific vision abilities required by this job include close vision, depth perception and ability to adjust focus.
Must possess - sufficient mobility, strength, or dexterity in both arms and hands and both legs to a) reach upward, sideways, downward to work with paper files; b) sufficient mobility and dexterity to utilize computer systems, fax machines, copiers, and other office machines.
Must possess – 1) ability to read and understand instructions, drawings, safety guides, and other written materials necessary to perform job; 2) sufficient visual capacity to perform the applicable functions without assistance of visual aids other than eye contacts or eye glasses; 3) sufficient spoken aural capacity to hear and understand instructions, warning bells, fire alarms, or shouted instructions without assistance of auditory aids other than a hearing aid; and 4) ability to impart information orally so that others understand and can respond appropriately.
Given the international nature of NOIRLab, occasional work at high elevation summit sites may be required (summit elevations range from 6,800 feet to 14,000 feet).
For summit positions, include:1) Cerro Tololo: Able to climb stairs and work at 2,200 mts altitude; 2) Cerro Pachon: Ability to work at 2,700 meters altitude, sometimes during inclement weather.
Required to pass medical examination (post offer and potentially at specified intervals while employed if medically necessary).
If you would like to apply for this opportunity, please submit your CV/Resume along with a Cover Letter in English (PDF files preferred). Also, kindly provide contact information of 3 professional references in your application, as references will be contacted later in the recruiting process.?
For full consideration please submit your application by July 9, 2021. Please name any attachments with the following format: LastnameDocname. Incomplete applications will not be considered. Application documents that are not uploaded as part of the application may be sent to email@example.com
Veterans, disabled individuals or wounded warriors needing assistance with the employment process should request assistance at firstname.lastname@example.org
At NOIRLab we are committed to diversity and inclusion; our managing organization, AURA, as a leader in the astronomical community, develops and supports programs that advance our organizational commitment to diversity, broaden participation, and encourage the advancement of diversity throughout the astronomical scientific workforce. Learn more at http://www.aura-astronomy.org/diversity.asp
AURA offers competitive salaries based on market rates and a generous package of benefits.
The Association of Universities for Research in Astronomy (AURA) is a consortium of over 40 US institutions and three international affiliates that operates world-class astronomical observatories. AURA’s role is to establish, nurture, and promote public observatories and facilities that advance innovative astronomical research. AURA is responsible for managing the operations of the NSF’s NOIRLab, the National Solar Observatory, and the construction of the Vera C. Rubin Observatory and the Daniel K. Inouye Solar Telescope under cooperative agreements with the National Science Foundation and operations of the Space Telescope Science Institute under contracts with NASA.
** NOIRLab has all staff working virtually during the COVID-19 crisis. The safety of our staff and community is our top priority. We will continue to interview and screen candidates in this new virtual landscape. Offers of employment can be extended and arrangements may be made for remote work. Relocation benefits will be available to those eligible when travel can be supported.
As a recipient of U.S. Government funding, AURA is considered a government contractor and is subject to Equal Employment Opportunity and Affirmative Action regulations. As an Equal Opportunity and Affirmative Action Employer, AURA does not discriminate based on race, sex, color, age, religion, national origin, sexual orientation, gender identity/gender identity expression, lawful political affiliations, veteran status, disability, and/or any other legally protected status under applicable federal, state, and local equal opportunity laws. The statements below as well as the requests for self-identification are required pursuant to these regulations. We encourage your participation in meeting these federal reporting requirements which are included for protection and to assist us in our recordkeeping and reporting. Your responses are kept strictly confidential.
Employer will assist with relocation costs.
Additional Salary Information: AURA offers competitive salaries based on market rates and a generous package of benefits.
Internal Number: ASSIS03898
The Association of Universities for Research in Astronomy (AURA) is a consortium of over 40 US institutions and four international affiliates that operates world-class astronomical observatories. AURA’s role is to establish, nurture, and promote public observatories and facilities that advance innovative astronomical research. AURA is responsible for managing the operations of the Gemini Observatory, the National Optical Astronomical Observatory, the National Solar Observatory, the Space Telescope Science Institute, and the construction of the Large Synoptic Survey Telescope and the Daniel K. Inouye Solar Telescope under cooperative agreements with the National Science Foundation and NASA.