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Requisition Number 17-0076
Post Date 7/28/2017
Title Materials Research Engineer - Optics
Position Type Full Time
Work Hours 40 hpw
City Morgantown/Pittsburgh
State WV
Description Purpose
This position is housed in the NRCCE Energy Programs Division (EPD) and provides support for the programs of the Research and Innovation Center (RIC) of the US DOE, National Energy Technology Laboratory (NETL) at the Morgantown and Pittsburgh locations.

The incumbent in this position will support research in optics, photonics and laser processing of materials. The primary duty will be to conduct research on crystalline optical fiber fabrication, coating, and processing, through operation, maintenance and modification of the Laser Heated Pedestal Growth System in the NETL Morgantown Laser and Optical Processes Lab (B25-102). Support for the research will require LabView programming, and use of lasers, optics, computer vision, and photonic components. Support will also include providing incidental support for the other optics and sensors projects and laboratories (including B25-210, B25-208), including specification and procurement of laboratory supplies and equipment.

Duties & Responsibilities
Responsibilities are functional in nature, and performed under supervision. Specific tasks include, but are not limited to:
1) Responsible for meeting task requirements of NETL and AECOM research managers in attaining goals established for the NETL team and RIC programs as delineated in the statements of work pertaining to funding awards supporting this position.
2) Responsible for providing R&D technical support for the NETL Advance Sensors and Controls team.
3) Responsible for assisting the Advanced Sensors and Controls team on
a. Fabricating uniform, high quality, low loss single crystal sapphire fiber.
b. Fabricating customized high quality single crystal sapphire fiber.
c. Developing novel optical fiber sensors for harsh environments.
d. Presenting technical findings during regular team meetings as well as at workshops and professional conferences.
4) Responsible for operating, maintaining and modifying a laser heated pedestal growth system (LHPG).
5) Responsible for creating new functions to control, monitor and analyze the single crystal fiber growth process with Labview and Matlab.
6) Responsible for testing the optical properties and performance of the single crystal optical fiber made by the LHPG system.
7) Active participation in group meetings of the Functional Materials Development Division, as well as other task related meetings.
8) Analyzing experimental data from laboratory tests and published data from other authors.
9) Assisting in the preparation of technical papers, reports, conference papers, and annual and quarterly reports. All presentation material(s) and journal papers shall be sent through AECOM/NETL for review and comment before submission to external units for technical review for publication or for presentation.
10) Presenting the results of the research at technical conferences and publishing in archival journals.

Supervisory/Lead Role
This position reports administratively to the Principal Investigator. The position has technical reporting responsibilities to AECOM and NETL personnel overseeing the NETL Advanced Sensors and Controls program.

Physical Demands
Strong eye-hand coordination, as well as the ability to finger and feel; ordinary communication and hearing; as well as strong visual acuity, near and far, depth perception, color and field vision are required to successfully perform the responsibilities of this position. Activities are predominantly non-manual though some manual work may be included. Laboratory work will be required, and the incumbent is expected to adhere to safety and health protocols established by NETL and AECOM.

Work Environment
Work is performed in standard office and laboratory settings with shared equipment and light traffic. Moderate noise levels, exposure to electricity, fumes, and chemicals will occur. Use of protective clothing and/or equipment and compliance with safety precautions is required. The incumbent is responsible to know and comply with all safety procedures and to maintain all certifications required by NETL and/or AECOM as a condition of working on site at the NETL campuses.

Requirements Requisite Qualifications
Education and/or Experience
1) PhD in Electrical engineering, mechanical engineering, physics, materials science, optics, or a closely related field.
2) 1 year work experience post-PhD.
3) Experience operating, maintaining and modifying a laser heated pedestal growth system (LHPG) for fabricating single-crystal optical fibers.

1) Incumbent must be able to meet the requirements for gaining clearance to work on the NETL campus

Skills, Knowledge, Abilities
1) Proficiency in mechanics: 3D CAD design with Solidworks, Autodesk Inventor or similar packages.
2) Considerable hands-on experience in mechanical system design and experience in mechanical parts fabrication using manual and CNC machine tools.
3) Proficiency in optics: experience in light path alignment and measurement in complicated optical systems, free-space-to-fiber coupling, experience in optical fiber sensing; specifically with applications in harsh environment sensing, experience with Raman DTS (distributed temperature sensing), OTDR (optical time-domain reflectometry), OFDR (optical frequency-domain reflectometry), FBGs (fiber Bragg gratings) and general spectroscopy techniques.
4) Proficiency in Matlab and Labview for research instrumentation and data collection.
5) Experience with machine-vision systems and digital image processing.
6) Completed safety training and experience as a Laser Operator in an ANSI compliant laser safety program.
7) Demonstrated proficiency in the writing of scholarly publications
8) Demonstrated proficiency in collaborating technical findings with external research organizations such as research laboratories and/or academic institutions
9) Ability to document and present research results, including using power point presentations and making podium presentations at technical meetings.
10) Ability to respond to common inquiries or complaints from customers, regulatory agencies, or members of the scientific and business community.
11) Ability to read, analyze, and interpret complex documents related to pertinent areas of research.
12) Ability to write speeches and articles for publication that conform to prescribed style and format as well as use original or innovative techniques or styles due to the nature of the scientific content of the material being presented.
13) Ability to make effective and persuasive speeches and presentations on complex topics to technical and non-technical audiences.
14) Ability to apply principles of logical or scientific thinking to a wide range of intellectual and practical problems.
15) Ability to deal with nonverbal symbolism (e.g., formulas, scientific equations, graphs) in its most difficult phases.
16) Ability to deal with a variety of abstract and concrete variables.
17) Ability to interpret an extensive variety of technical instructions in mathematical or diagram form and deal with several abstract and concrete variables.
18) Ability to define problems, collect data, establish facts and draw valid conclusions.
19) Ability to meet deadlines; prepare, present and report results effectively.
20) Ability to perform strategic planning for program development.
21) Ability to communicate the goals of advanced research projects to non-experts, including the general public and government officials.
22) Ability to work effectively with other research personnel sharing the laboratories to maintain good housekeeping and safe operations.

Behavioral Competencies
1) Technical skills – Strives to continuously build knowledge and skills; pursues training and development opportunities; assess strengths, weaknesses, and shares expertise with others.
2) Problem solving – Gathers and analyzes information, identifies problems, develops alternatives, uses reason even when dealing with emotional topics and works well in groups and resolves matters timely.
3) Internal & External Customer Service – Manages difficult or emotional matters with objectivity and openness; responds promptly to needs and requests for service and assistance; meets commitments and dates, notifies others if change occurs; provides, solicits and applies feedback; and builds goodwill through balanced contributions, positive approach, respect and support of others.
4) Communications – Demonstrates group presentation skills, participates in meetings, listens and gets clarification, is responsive and speaks clearly and persuasively in positive and negative situations. Writes and edits clearly and informatively, varies style to meet needs, presents numerical data effectively, and able to read and interpret written information.
5) Organizational Support – Aligns work and develops strategies to meet organizational goals; seeks to improve and promote quality; demonstrates accuracy and thoroughness; and upholds organizational expectations and values.
6) Self-Management – Responds to management direction; resourcefully adapts to changes in work environment and circumstances; responds well under pressure and manages competing demands; takes calculated risks, asks for and offers help when needed; exercises discretion and sound judgment; is tactful and responsible for own actions. Adheres to work schedule and complies with leave management responsibilities.
  • AA/EOE/Minorities/Females/Vet/Disability/E-Verify Compliant Employer.
  • Please view Equal Employment Opportunity Posters provided by OFCCP here.
  • The contractor will not discharge or in any other manner discriminate against employees or applicants because they have inquired about, discussed, or disclosed their own pay or the pay of another employee or applicant. However, employees who have access to the compensation information of other employees or applicants as a part of their essential job functions cannot disclose the pay of other employees or applicants to individuals who do not otherwise have access to compensation information, unless the disclosure is (a) in response to a formal complaint or charge, (b) in furtherance of an investigation, proceeding, hearing, or action, including an investigation conducted by the employer, or (c) consistent with the contractor's legal duty to furnish information.
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