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System Engineer-NIF Detectors

Associate | Full-time
Engineering | livermore, CA | 03/09/2022

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Company Description

Join us and make YOUR mark on the World!

Are you interested in joining some of the brightest talent in the world to strengthen the United States’ security? Come join Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory (LLNL) where our employees apply their expertise to create solutions for BIG ideas that make our world a better place.

We are committed to a diverse and equitable workforce with an inclusive culture that values and celebrates the diversity of our people, talents, ideas, experiences, and perspectives. This is essential to innovation and creativity for continued success of the Laboratory’s mission.

Job Description

We have an opening for an early to mid-career Systems Engineer with a background in Electrical Engineering or Applied Physics.  This position offers an exciting opportunity to be trained on new technologies in support of big physics experiments.  Once trained, you will be responsible for the design, development, testing, fielding, and ongoing management of new and existing Target Diagnostic Systems within the Target Area Science and Engineering (TASE) Detector Group, supporting the National Ignition Facility and Photon Science Directorate (NIF&PS).  Technology areas include x-ray streak cameras, high-speed microchannel plate gated imagers, x-ray radiation detection, optical, and nuclear partial detection for imaging and spectroscopy, pulse dilation technology, Active Pixel Sensors (APS aka CMOS image sensor), CCD optical sensors, and radiation effects on electrical components and systems.  This position will include daily maintenance and upgrades to fielded systems, system integration, technical project management, and systems engineering duties.  This position may require up to 10%-time domestic travel to partner facilities.  This position is in the Laser Systems Engineering & Operations (LSEO) Division, within the Engineering Directorate.

This position will be filled at either level based on knowledge and related experience as assessed by the hiring team. Additional job responsibilities (outlined below) will be assigned if hired at the higher level.

In this role, you will

  • Support Integrated Product Teams (IPT) and act as a point of contact for well-defined small support projects of limited complexity.
  • Develop and execute test/calibration/characterization plans for detector systems while working under general direction.
  • Provide day-to-day engineering support for diagnostic system currently deployed in the NIF as the Responsible System Engineer (RSE), working with readily identifiable factors, while contributing and functioning as a part of a larger team.
  • Contribute to project/program milestone completion and provide solutions to problems of limited complexity using standard techniques and methodologies.
  • Participate in formal and informal Engineering design reviews.
  • Execute pre-defined moderately complex short term (1-3 day) electrical component and system level tests that are well-defined and use standard techniques and methods at specialized partner organization’s test facilities or within the NIF.
  • Assist in the successful installation and commissioning of new diagnostic systems in the NIF.
  • Provide engineering solutions for existing and future diagnostic systems, while working under general direction.
  • Develop methods to improve system reliability, maintainability, and availability as appropriate and while functioning as part of the larger team.
  • Provide engineering design support for electrical/electronic subsystems in diagnostics.
  • Perform other duties as assigned.

Additional job responsibilities, at the SES.2 level

  • Participate in or informally lead Engineering design reviews; includes design support for electrical and involved sub-systems in diagnostics, performing systems engineering analysis to determine requirements and can involve new moderately complex to complex diagnostics systems through installation and commissioning.
  • Plan and execute moderately complex short term (1-3 day) electrical component and system level tests at specialized partner organization’s test facilities or within the NIF.
  • Develop engineering solutions for existing and future diagnostic systems, including quality standards, publications and presentations, and participation in multidisciplinary design efforts, providing solutions and in-depth analysis to moderately complex camera systems, sensors, and data transmissions systems.
  • Propose methods to improve system reliability, maintainability, and availability, while working under limited direction.


  • Ability to obtain and maintain a U.S. DOE Q-level security clearance which requires U.S. citizenship.
  • Bachelor’s degree in Electrical Engineering, Applied Physics or related field, or equivalent combination of education and related experience.
  • Experience working with oscilloscopes, digital delay generators, network analyzers, or similar lab equipment that may be used for testing and characterization.
  • Fundamental knowledge of analog circuit design and digital circuit design of limited complexity at the component level.
  • Experience working with printed circuit board (PCB) layout and design including component selection and qualification (ADC, DACs, op-amps, and other standard board components).
  • Fundamental knowledge of installation, commissioning and engineering problem solving of limited complexity.
  • Experience working effectively in a multidisciplinary team environment while under general direction.
  • Sufficient verbal and written communication skills necessary to interact with a multidisciplinary research team, author technical and scientific reports and papers, document analyses, and deliver scientific presentations.

Additional qualifications at the SES.2 level

  • Broad experience and proficiency with moderately complex technical project management including the use of gant charts and/or systems engineering, coupled with the ability to manage multiple projects simultaneously.
  • Comprehensive knowledge of and experience with any of the following: scientific detector, vacuum, data acquisition, motor controllers and/or high voltage (>100V) systems.
  • Experience using and expanding existing MATLAB, Python, SPICE, or LabVIEW, scripts/routines for analysis, parameter optimization and/or lab automation.
  • Experience with design, installation, commissioning, and hands on testing and debugging of moderately complex to complex electronic hardware.

Additional Information

All your information will be kept confidential according to EEO guidelines.



Position Information

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

Why Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory?

  • Included in 2022 Best Places to Work by Glassdoor!
  • Work for a premier innovative national Laboratory
  • Comprehensive Benefits Package
  • Flexible schedules (*depending on project needs)
  • Collaborative, creative, inclusive, and fun team environment

Learn more about our company, selection process, position types and security clearances by visiting our Career site

COVID-19 Vaccination Mandate

LLNL demonstrates its commitment to public safety by requiring that all new Laboratory employees be immunized against COVID-19 unless granted an accommodation under applicable state or federal law. This requirement will apply to all new hires including those who will be working on site, as well as those who will be teleworking.

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.  For additional information, please see DOE Order 472.2

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.

Equal Employment Opportunity

LLNL is an affirmative action and equal opportunity employer that values and hires a diverse workforce. 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, pregnancy, protected veteran status, age, citizenship, or any other characteristic protected by applicable laws.

If you need assistance and/or a reasonable accommodation during the application or the recruiting process, please submit a request via our online form

California Privacy Notice

The California Consumer Privacy Act (CCPA) grants privacy rights to all California residents. The law also entitles job applicants, employees, and non-employee workers to be notified of what personal information LLNL collects and for what purpose. The Employee Privacy Notice can be accessed here.

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