Optical Engineer | Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory

Date Posted: 
Thursday, November 7, 2019

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Position Location: 
Livermore, CA
Job Description: 
Job ID: 105635
Job Code: Science & Engineering MTS 2 (SES.2) / Science & Engineering MTS 3 (SES.3)

Join us and make YOUR mark on the World!

Come join Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory (LLNL) where we apply science and technology to make the world a safer place; now one of 2019 Best Places to Work by Glassdoor!

We have an opening for an experienced Optical Engineer to support the Optics Metrology Group of the National Ignition Facility (NIF).  The group is responsible for validating the operation, maintenance, certification, and upgrading of large optic metrology tools located at LLNL and at NIF optic vendor sites around the country as well as developing and fielding new instrumentation in the area of optical defect analysis and laser beam modulation.  Travel to offsite vendors may be required to meet group goals.  This position is in the Laser Systems Engineering & Operations (LSEO) Division of the Engineering Directorate.  LSEO provides support to the NIF & Photon Sciences Directorate.

This position will be filled at either the SES.2 or SES.3 level depending on your qualifications.  Additional job responsibilities (outlined below) will be assigned if you are selected at the higher level.

Essential Duties

  • Evaluate and monitor the measurement capabilities of large precision metrology instruments used in the production of NIF optical components in collaboration with vendors, identifying and resolving moderately complex issues as they arise; may include 24” interferometers, photometers, phase measuring microscopes and automated optical microscopes.
  • Design and conduct moderately complex to complex experiments to support new large optic metrology instruments as required by the project, including work with pulsed and continuous wave (CW), flashlamp, diode-pumped Nd:YAG, Nd:YLF lasers, and visible diode lasers, as well as involved computer hardware and instrumentation.
  • Evaluate commercially available photonics/optics components under limited direction.
  • Analyze moderately complex to complex data produced by the instruments to ensure NIF optics are meeting specifications utilizing broadly defined parameters.
  • Document and configure management of optical systems for build and analysis.
  • Mentor operators in safe operating procedures of all systems fielded.
  • Provide technical oversight and evaluation of the work being done by the project team.
  • Perform other duties as assigned.

In Addition at the SES.3 Level

  • Perform and conduct complex evaluation, monitoring, and experiments of large precision metrology instruments including estimating project schedules and project management functions independently and under minimal direction.
  • Lead or direct operator training in safe operating procedures of all systems fielded.
  • Oversee and lead metrology process improvement and strategies to increase productivity and quality at NIF optics vendors.


  • Bachelor’s in Physics, Optics, Engineering, or related field, or the equivalent combination of education and previous relevant experience.
  • Comprehensive skills and proficiency with common moderately complex to complex optical metrology techniques including interferometric measurements, photometry and ratiometry.
  • Comprehensive hands-on experience and knowledge of optical metrology measurements in a production environment including moderately complex to complex instrument troubleshooting and data analysis techniques.
  • Comprehensive knowledge of pulsed and continuous wave (CW), flashlamp and diode-pumped Nd:YAG, Nd:YLF lasers and visible diode lasers a well as computer hardware and instrumentation.
  • Knowledge and experience in IDL and LabView programming.
  • Working knowledge of a variety of Windows operating systems including NT through XP.
  • Experience working in a multi-disciplinary team environment which includes scientists, engineers, technicians and vendors.
  • Proficient interpersonal, verbal and written communication skills necessary to effectively collaborate in a team environment and present and explain technical information.

In Addition at the SES.3 Level

  • Master’s in Physics, Optics, Engineering or related field.
  • Advanced knowledge and significant experience in complex evaluation, monitoring, and experiments of large precision metrology instruments including estimating project schedules and project management functions independently and under minimal direction.
  • Advanced skills and knowledge in process improvement, complex problem resolution, negotiation, and leadership.

Desired Qualifications

  • PhD in Physics, Optics, Engineering, or related field.
  • Advanced expertise of non-linear optical processes (frequency conversion), laser damage processes and diffraction theory.
  • Experience working with off-site vendors in strategically developing new metrology tools.

Pre-Employment Drug Test:  External applicant(s) selected for this position will be required to pass a post-offer, pre-employment drug test.  This includes testing for use of marijuana as Federal Law applies to us as a Federal Contractor.

Security Clearance:  This position requires a Department of Energy (DOE) Q-level clearance.

If you are selected, we will initiate a Federal background investigation to determine if you meet eligibility requirements for access to classified information or matter. In addition, all L or Q cleared employees are subject to random drug testing.  Q-level clearance requires U.S. citizenship.  If you hold multiple citizenships (U.S. and another country), you may be required to renounce your non-U.S. citizenship before a DOE L or Q clearance will be processed/granted.

Note:   This is a Career Indefinite position. Lab employees and external candidates may be considered for this position.

About Us

Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory (LLNL), located in the San Francisco Bay Area (East Bay), is a premier applied science laboratory that is part of the National Nuclear Security Administration (NNSA) within the Department of Energy (DOE).  LLNL's mission is strengthening national security by developing and applying cutting-edge science, technology, and engineering that respond with vision, quality, integrity, and technical excellence to scientific issues of national importance.  The Laboratory has a current annual budget of about $2.1 billion, employing approximately 6,800 employees.

LLNL is an affirmative action/ equal opportunity employer. All qualified applicants will receive consideration for employment without regard to race, color, religion, marital status, national origin, ancestry, sex, sexual orientation, gender identity, disability, medical condition, protected veteran status, age, citizenship, or any other characteristic protected by law.