Optical Engineer | Sandia National Laboratories

Date Posted: 
Friday, March 8, 2013

Position Level: 
Position Location: 
Albuquerque, N.M.
Job Description: 

Job Description
Job Title:
R&D S&E, Optical Engineering (Senior or Principal)
Job ID:
Location: Albuquerque, NM
Full/Part Time:

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About Sandia
Sandia National Laboratories is the nation's premier science and engineering lab for national security and technology innovation. We are a world-class team of scientists, engineers, technologists, post docs, and visiting researchers all focused on cutting-edge technology, ranging from homeland defense, global security, biotechnology, and environmental preservation to energy and combustion research, computer security, and nuclear defense.

To learn more, visit http://www.sandia.gov.
Department Description
The Photonic Microsystems Technologies Department exploits science and technology at the nano and micro scales to enable advances in systems for national security. Our engagement is with a broad spectrum of technologies and a diverse field of customers with a successful record of maturing technology from concept to laboratory demo to prototype. The department consists of several teams that lead the development and understanding of physical effects across the classical electromagnetic spectrum from ultraviolet to terahertz and the quantum effects associated with silicon electronic devices, atomic and molecular gases, and trapped electrons, atoms and ions. Most significantly, with a strong presence in the Microsystems Engineering Sciences and Applications (MESA) facility and the Center for Integrated Nanotechnologies (CINT) and working broadly with other Sandia and external organizations, we fabricate electronic structures and devices that use these effects to achieve new levels of performance at the integrated system level. Core technology areas in the department include nanofabrication of silicon devices; subwavelength, diffractive, and refractive microoptics; 2-D and 3-D photonic crystals; electromagnetic modeling; atomic physics based sensors; miniature atomic inertial navigation sensors; ion-trap and solid-state quantum information science and technology; electron-beam lithography and optical design.
How to Apply
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Job Description
R&D S&E, Optical Engineeri SE
Job Summary
Sandia's Photonic Microsystems Technologies Department has an opening for an exceptional optical engineer to perform research and development activities related to micro fabricated/chip-based devices and their application to sensing, positioning, navigation, timing (PNT), and quantum information processing. The individual will work with a team of physicists and micro-fabrication engineers to develop new micro-optical systems for the management of photons in atomic, molecular, and optical (AMO) experimental devices. The responsibilities of this person will include but not be limited to a combination of micro-optics (diffractive and refractive) design, theory and simulation, fabrication, characterization and testing of micro-optics, and the integration of optics with AMO devices. The individual needs to possess a strong background in both classical and physical optics.

This job series typically applies integrated technical judgment--which requires using the scientific method to recognize and formulate problems, to collect data through observation and experimentation, and to formulate and test hypotheses--to anticipate, innovate, and deliver solutions to Sandia National Laboratories missions. Roots the work in the fundamentals of science and engineering while applying a deep understanding of engineering and scientific principles. Creates and applies scientific theories and laws and engineering methods used within scientific and engineering disciplines to develop or demonstrate new designs, concepts, materials, machines, products, processes, or systems. Uses physical and computational simulation, analysis, and evaluation as inherent activities of development. Plans, conducts, and executes Sandia's science and engineering programs within the spectrum of fundamental research, development, or demonstration.

Designs, analyzes, and tests optical and electro-optical systems and components, including lasers, fiber optics, and telecommunications systems. Conducts research or development into physical or geometric optics, lasers, laser characteristics, laser maintenance, and broadband optical sources. Applies research on optical systems to achieve desired optical manipulations. Performs research, design, modeling, analysis, and development in such areas as mechanical, optomechanical, electromechanical, structural, or thermal components and systems. Applies research to the planning, design, development, documentation of results, and testing of mechanical, optomechanical, and electromechanical systems, assemblies, components, instruments, or controls including servo mechanisms and systems, sensors and imaging detectors, lasers, and fiber optic products. Performs research, design, modeling, analysis, and development in mechanical, optical/photonic, electromechanical, structural, or thermal areas for production, transmission, measurement, and use of energy.
Primary Job Duties
Plans, conceives, conducts, or manages research and development for Sandia's customers and sponsors.
Directs systematic study toward a fuller knowledge or understanding of the fundamental aspects of phenomena and of observable facts, and discovers new approaches to achieve goals.
Creates new understandings and capabilities by using the scientific method's hypothesis, test, and evaluation techniques; critical review; or similar engineering research and development methods.
Initiates, designs, develops, executes, and evaluates new processes, products, or systems through basic and applied research.
Uses engineering principles to research, design, or develop structures, instruments, machines, experiments, processes, systems, theories, or technologies; to construct or operate the same with full cognizance of their design; or to forecast their behavior under specific operating conditions.
Undertakes development and possible technology transfer of solutions, products, principles or technology.
Undertakes creative work, making systematic use of investigation or experimentation, to discover or revise knowledge of reality, and uses this knowledge to devise new applications.
Knowledge, Skills & Abilities
Advanced technical degree or significant equivalent experience.
Technical knowledge and competencies appropriate to the position.
Thorough knowledge of and applied experience with scientific and engineering methods and with the discipline's standards for the ethical conduct of research.
Thorough knowledge of and experience with designing, planning, and executing research, design, and development projects.
Demonstrated knowledge of and experience with implementing Sandia policies affecting research, design, and development activities, projects, or initiatives.
Demonstrated ability to team across disciplines.
- A Master's Degree in optical sciences or optical engineering.
- Experience with optical design, design and modeling of diffractive optics, photomask layout, fabrication, and characterization of micro-scale optics, including work in at least two (2) of these technical areas within the last two (2) years.
- Direct experience with optical-design software and translation of optical-design specifications to mechanical layout.
- Experience with implementation of miniaturized optical assemblies.
- Exemplary academic record: A minimum undergraduate GPA of 3.2/4.0 and a minimum graduate GPA of 3.5/4.0.
- Excellent communication skills, particularly in written form.
- Excellent collaboration skills for working in a team environment.
- A Ph.D. in optical sciences or optical engineering
- A track record of successful execution of research-and-development projects in micro-scale optics, including project planning, defining milestones, and delivering results on time.
- Experience in developing custom diffractive optics and/or micro-optical systems for use with ion trapping, neutral atom trapping, and atomic vapor cell devices.
- Experience with optical waveguides and optical fibers.
- Experience with building, alignment, metrology and testing of optical systems, in particular, micro-scale optical systems.
- A minimum undergraduate GPA of 3.5/4.0 and a minimum graduate GPA of 3.7/4.0.
Security Clearance
Position requires a Department of Energy (DOE)-granted Q-level security clearance.

Sandia is required by DOE directive to conduct a pre-employment background review that includes personal reference checks, law enforcement record and credit checks, and employment and education verifications. Applicants for employment must be able to obtain and maintain a DOE Q-level security clearance, which requires U.S. citizenship.

Applicants offered employment with Sandia are subject to a federal background investigation to meet the requirements for access to classified information or matter if the duties of the position require a DOE security clearance. Substance abuse or illegal drug use, falsification of information, criminal activity, serious misconduct or other indicators of untrustworthiness can cause a clearance to be denied or terminated by the DOE, rendering the inability to perform the duties assigned and resulting in termination of employment.
At Sandia you will receive many benefits as a valued employee of a premier national multi-program engineering and science research laboratory. In our Total Rewards package you will enjoy competitive pay, great benefits, a stimulating, positive environment and learning opportunities that will help build your career. More information may be found on our Careers website.
Sandia National Laboratories is an Equal Opportunity Employer M/F/D/V.


Apply online at http://www.sandia.gov/careers/ps-forward.html, job number 642725. Please contact Michael R. Descour with any questions at 505-844-9598 or mrdesco@sandia.gov.