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Control Systems Hardware Engineer

Mid-Senior Level | Full-time
Engineering | livermore, CA | 05/16/2022

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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 multiple openings for Control Systems Hardware Engineers. You will provide engineering solutions for developing, implementing, and maintaining control systems hardware in the National Ignition Facility (NIF), the world’s highest energy pulsed laser system. With over 60,000 control points distributed throughout the facility, many of NIF’s subsystems have control technologies at their core.  You will contribute to the engineering design and development of new hardware and for system upgrades to continually improve system performance and reliability. These positions are in the Laser Systems Engineering and Operations (LSEO) Division, within the Engineering Directorate. 

These positions 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.

In this role, you will

  • As a member of the controls team, provide motion controls and embedded systems hardware solutions which contribute to the definition, design, documentation, assembly, fielding, and maintenance, of National Ignition Facility control systems.  
  • Contribute to daily activities in NIF, providing engineering support for deployment, activation, commissioning, troubleshooting, and maintenance of moderately complex to complex control system hardware.
  • Under limited direction, provide guidance for system repairs, upgrades or new design and commissioning for current and future optical alignment and diagnostic systems.
  • Determine, maintain, and present metrics for system reliability and performance, and use those metrics to drive investments in system improvements.
  • Refine and manage the system requirement specifications and control system design to meet project goals.  Minimize project risks by participating in formal and informal design reviews. 
  • Maintain a close interface with the various programmatic and project elements to provide regular status reviews, ensure effective teamwork, and facilitate end-user communication.
  • Perform other duties as assigned.

Additional job responsibilities, at the SES.3 level 

  • Develop documentation that will be used as a basis for the long-term maintenance and operation of systems deployed in a 30-year facility. 
  • Lead team efforts in development of complex controls hardware systems while also mentoring junior staff.  Manage shared resources and procurements.  Lead formal and informal design reviews.  Employ project management and supervisory skills to achieve required system performance. 
  • Develop new projects or programs enhancing controls system hardware which benefit lab operations.  Guide project completion working with multidisciplinary associates beyond the local work group including inter-organizational contacts and external customers to determine and precisely define broad requirements for NIF control system hardware.


  • Ability to obtain and maintain a U.S. DOE Q-level security clearance which requires U.S. citizenship.
  • Bachelor's degree in an Engineering discipline related to electronics, electrical engineering, controls, or the equivalent combination of education and prior related experience.
  • Comprehensive knowledge and application of motion control using open- and closed-loop feedback with DC and AC motors throughout the full engineering lifecycle.
  • Broad experience developing industrial analog and digital circuit design for incorporation into controls/instrumentation hardware.
  • Experience incorporating moderately complex to complex embedded hardware into systems in a high EMI environment.
  • Proficient understanding of documentation standards including drawings, procedures, statements of work and test plans.
  • Comprehensive knowledge of both analog and discrete instrumentation (sensors, actuators, controllers), data acquisition and signal processing/conditioning.
  • Experience with electronic measurement diagnostics including oscilloscopes and TDRs.
  • Experience working as a member of a multidisciplinary team, which includes working with scientists, engineers, technicians, and designers.
  • Proficient verbal and written communication skills necessary to effectively collaborate in a team environment to present and explain technical information. 

Additional qualifications at the SES.3 level 

  • Advanced knowledge of and significant experience in the design of complex control systems hardware architecture.
  • Significant experience leading small teams, coordinating efforts with other groups and ensuring compatibility with interdependent systems. Project management and supervisory skills to achieve required system performance.  Experience with mentoring team members.  
  • Significant experience defining scope from often not well defined and/or rapidly changing requirements, while considering enhancements and future projects, and creating strong process documentation.

Qualifications We Desire

  • Experience with system level design, architecting and project management.
  • Knowledge of LabVIEW and related National Instruments technologies.
  • Knowledge of PLC hardware and troubleshooting in an industrial environment.

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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