Position Description

Senior Electronics Engineer
Job Category Fulltime Regular
ExemptOvertimeEligible Exempt
Benefits Eligible Benefit Based
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Job Summary

Caltech is a world-renowned science and engineering institute that marshals some of the world's brightest minds and most innovative tools to address fundamental scientific questions. We thrive on finding and cultivating talented people who are passionate about what they do. Join us and be a part of the diverse Caltech community.

Job Summary

LIGO Laboratory (the Laser Interferometer Gravitational-wave Observatory) seeks a highly motivated and skilled Senior Electronics Engineer to join its team working at the design, construction and operation of world-leading gravitational-wave interferometric detectors. 

As a Electronics Engineer in the LIGO laboratory, you will have the opportunity to apply your skills at the design, prototyping, testing and production of a diverse range of electronics systems: low-noise analog circuits for the readout of optical and other sensors; radio-frequency (10-100 MHz) modulation and demodulation systems; analog-to-digital and digital-to-analog converters. The work is highly collaborative, involving daily interaction with a diverse group of engineers, scientists and technicians to develop specifications and fine tune the designs to the needs of the LIGO Observatories.

LIGO Laboratory is a National Science Foundation major facility dedicated to observing the newly discovered gravitational-wave universe. Jointly operated by the California Institute of Technology and Massachusetts Institute of Technology, the LIGO Laboratory operates world-leading observatories near Richland, WA and Baton Rouge, LA as well as R&D centers on the Caltech and MIT campuses. The LIGO Laboratory’s mission spans a broad and vibrant array of activities related to gravitational-wave physics and astronomy, including detector operations, R&D toward detector improvements, gravitational-wave astrophysics, observatory operations, and education and public outreach. For more information, please visit the Laboratory website: LIGO's Website

Caltech and LIGO Laboratory’s goal is to build a world-class, diverse workforce and support an inclusive environment that encourages professional development and offers top-notch benefits. Our talented staff, who work at the Caltech campus, or one of our Observatories, come from a variety of fields. Positions include scientists, engineers, information technology staff, outreach professionals, managers, writers, business professionals, and administrative staff. We are deeply committed to encouraging people of all backgrounds to apply for these opportunities. Our experience has demonstrated that the broader the styles, characteristics, backgrounds, and abilities of our staff—in other words, the more diverse our team is—the greater potential we have for success. Caltech is an equal opportunity employer. LIGO Laboratory is committed to being a welcoming place for everyone regardless of race, color, religion, gender, gender identity or expression, sexual orientation, national origin, disability, age, or veteran status.

Essential Job Duties  

Contribute to the design, test and fabrication of very low-noise analog and digital systems and circuits for the LIGO Laboratory. For example: low-noise analog circuits for the readout of optical and other sensors; radio-frequency (10-100 MHz) modulation and demodulation systems; analog-to-digital and digital-to-analog converters.

Provide forward-looking guidance by initiating and carrying out R&D for the incorporation of emergent technologies in the LIGO hardware to improve the performance and reliability of the ultra-high sensitivity observatories.

Manage assigned electronics-related efforts to upgrade the LIGO Interferometers for LIGO Operations.

Serve as a consulting member on Design Review, Technical Review, or other Laboratory committees and panels as required.

Initiate and/or collaborate on technical presentations within the LIGO laboratory or at international conferences and meetings

Manage and support procurements, which may include preparing bid packages (drawings, bill of materials, specifications, and statements of work), and purchase parts and materials. 

Coordinate QA inspections, audits, testing and defect investigations alongside other members of the team.

Work within a diverse team environment, collaborating and effectively communicating with groups from around the world who have a broad spectrum of backgrounds and skills.

Other duties as assigned.

This position requires occasional travel to other LIGO installations and possibly internationally.

Basic Qualifications

A Master’s degree in Physics or Engineering. In lieu of a Master's degree, we will consider 8 years of equivalent experience.

8+ years overall experience in the field of design of analog electronic systems, preferably for large physics experiments.

Demonstrated ability to design, specify and fabricate electronic circuits, including e.g. low noise analog electronic circuits.

Demonstrated ability to manage complex tasks, including managing and maintaining project schedules and managing project budgets.

A thorough knowledge of electronics test equipment including: RF network analyzers, dynamic signal analyzers, oscilloscopes, and common lab test equipment.

2 + years of experience using software for circuit design, data analysis and simulation.

Excellent technical writing skills coupled with the ability to communicate clearly with peers, assigned staff and external entities, such as funding agencies and review panels.

Preferred Qualifications

Experience in electrical engineering for large scale science projects.

Proven track history of taking a system from design to manufacturing

Detailed knowledge of the LIGO interferometer systems

Required Documents for a complete application

  • Cover Letter and Resume

Hiring Range

$125K - $145K per year

The salary of the finalist(s) selected for this role will be set based on a variety of factors, including but not limited to, internal equity, experience, education, specialty and training.

As one of the largest employers in Pasadena, CA, Caltech is committed to providing comprehensive benefits to eligible employees and their eligible dependents. Our benefits package includes competitive compensation, health, dental, and vision insurance, retirement savings plans, generous paid time off (vacation, holidays, sick time, parental leave, bereavement, etc.), tuition reimbursement, and more. Non-benefit eligible employees will have access to some benefits such as onsite counseling and sick time. Learn more about our benefits and staff perks

COVID-19 Vaccine Required for All Employees

Caltech has implemented a mandatory vaccination policy effective October 15, 2021, requiring COVID-19 vaccinations for all employees (with Institute-approved exemptions for religious or medical contraindications only). At present, an individual is deemed “fully vaccinated” when that person has received, at least 14 days prior, either the second dose in a two-dose COVID-19 vaccine series (e.g., Pfizer or Moderna) or a single-dose COVID-19 vaccine (e.g., Johnson & Johnson). Upon eligibility, employees are required to receive the COVID-19 booster as part of the vaccine mandate. As a condition of employment, employees must submit official COVID-19 vaccine documentation. More information may be found here.

EEO Statement

We are an equal opportunity employer and all qualified applicants will receive consideration for employment without regard to age, race, color, religion, sex, sexual orientation, gender identity, or national origin, disability status, protected veteran status, or any other characteristic protected by law.

Caltech is a VEVRAA Federal Contractor.

To read more Equal Employment Opportunity (EEO) go to eeoc_self_print_poster.pdf.

Disability Accommodations

If you would like to request an accommodation in completing this application, interviewing, or otherwise participating in the employee selection process, please direct your inquiries to Caltech Recruiting at employment@caltech.edu

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