This Position Is No Longer Available

Job Title:Electrical Engineer

Agency:Smithsonian Institution

Job Announcement Number:12-71

This position is closed and no longer accepting online applications through USAJOBS.

The contents of the announcement can still be viewed.

SALARY RANGE:

$105,702.00 to $137,410.00 / Per Year

OPEN PERIOD:

Thursday, October 25, 2012 to Friday, February 15, 2013

SERIES & GRADE:

IS-0850-14

POSITION INFORMATION:

Full Time - Indefinite Trust Appointment. This is not a Federal position.

PROMOTION POTENTIAL:

14

DUTY LOCATIONS:

1 vacancy in the following location:
Cambridge, MA, US

WHO MAY APPLY:

This position is open to all qualified US citizens

JOB SUMMARY:

Central Engineering is the primary source for the development of scientific instrumentation for the Center for Astrophysics. CE staff conceive, design, fabricate, test, integrate/install, operate, and maintain state-of-the-art instruments for astronomical and astrophysical data collection--both ground based and space borne--and the ground support and laboratory equipment required to assemble, test, calibrate, and protect them.  If this is the career for you, apply today!

This is the position of Electrical Systems Engineer, Central Engineering Department (CE), and Smithsonian Astrophysical Observatory (SAO). Working under only the broad general direction of the Chief Electronics Engineer or Director of Central Engineering (DCE), the incumbent will independently conceive, plan, and conduct wide ranging technical investigations of extreme difficulty and complexity in areas relating to the electrical systems of ground based and space-borne state-of-the-art scientific instrumentation. He/she will work directly with Principal Investigators and staff scientists to translate scientific requirements into pioneering technology to be applied to the development of cutting edge astronomical/astrophysical instruments in support of the advance of Observatory scientific research objectives, and will ensure the translation of these concepts into functional hardware.

KEY REQUIREMENTS

  • May be required to serve a one-year probationary period.
  • Direct Deposit/Electronic Funds Transfer required for salary payment
  • Pre and Post appointment background check required.
  • Domestic and international travel is required.
  • Must file a Confidential Statement of Employment and Financial Interests.

DUTIES:

Uses broad knowledge of state-of-the-art to conceive, plan, and execute complex and varied assignments in the electrical engineering required to develop cutting edge instrumentation for astrophysical and astronomical data collection; as well as for its associated test, calibration, and other ground support equipment:

 

Conceives, designs, and oversees development of complex state-of-the-art electrical/electronics systems, subsystems, modules, and components. Provides expert technical consultation to CfA scientists and other engineering staff in instrument electrical design.

Translates scientific objectives into achievable hardware that exploits or extends state-of-the art and advances current technology, and works with scientific investigators to establish the electrical/electronics requirements of new projects. Analyzes scientific data collection requirements, translates these requirements into instrument performance characteristics, and develops instrument concepts and preliminary systems diagrams.

Performs critical trade-off analyses of various methods of implementing designs. Makes and documents recommendations for optimum methods considering both known and anticipated operating environments.

Evaluates manufacturers’ performance capability data for discrete, hybrid, and integrated circuitry, components, and systems. Incorporates analysis results into design decisions.

Prepares cost and schedule estimates for hardware design, fabrication, test, and calibration; including supporting documentation.

Extensively documents work in technical memoranda, reports, test plans, and procedures.

Defends proposals to funding agency and/or scientific peer review panels in support of the Principal Investigator. Troubleshoots and analyzes complex technical problems encountered on CE projects, identifies and recommends solutions, and oversees their implementation.

From conceptual design through project completion, provides leadership in design and analysis and  documentation.  Maintains a technical overview of the project in process, and has ultimate responsibility for the design and test integrity of the contract or project end item. Chooses appropriate technologies, establishes technical priorities, and performs conceptual, systems level, and detail design. Prepares cost estimates, schedules, plans, technical reports, and engineering input to project proposals; supervises engineers, designers, and technicians assigned to the project; and maintains engineering budgets and schedules. Provides technical leadership and direction to, and liaison with, hardware contractors and sub-contractors as required.

Investigates, selects, justifies, and oversees procurement of critical electrical, electro-optical, and servo-mechanical components used in astrophysical instrumentation and its development.

Represents SAO on technical task forces and agency councils as required. Makes both oral and written presentations to project scientists and technical representatives of contracting agencies and cooperating or affiliated organizations: Either singly or in collaboration with project scientists and other engineers, may write technical papers recording innovative design techniques and criteria, and present papers to technical symposia in the specialty field.

 


QUALIFICATIONS REQUIRED:

Basic Requirements:

  1. Degree: professional engineering. To be acceptable, the curriculum must: (1) be in a school of engineering with at least one curriculum accredited by the Accreditation Board for Engineering and Technology (ABET) as a professional engineering curriculum; or (2) include differential and integral calculus and courses (more advanced than first-year physics and chemistry) in five of the following seven areas of engineering science or physics: (a) statics, dynamics; (b) strength of materials (stress-strain relationships); (c) fluid mechanics, hydraulics; (d) thermodynamics; (e) electrical fields and circuits; (f) nature and properties of materials (relating particle and aggregate structure to properties); and (g) any other comparable area of fundamental engineering science or physics, such as optics, heat transfer, soil mechanics, or electronics.

    OR

  2. Combination of education and experience -- college-level education, training, and/or technical experience that furnished (1) a thorough knowledge of the physical and mathematical sciences underlying professional engineering, and (2) a good understanding, both theoretical and practical, of the engineering sciences and techniques and their applications to one of the branches of engineering. The adequacy of such background must be demonstrated by one of the following:

    1. Professional registration -- Current registration as a professional engineer by any State, the District of Columbia, Guam, or Puerto Rico. Absent other means of qualifying under this standard, those applicants who achieved such registration by means other than written test (e.g., State grandfather or eminence provisions) are eligible only for positions that are within or closely related to the specialty field of their registration. For example, an applicant who attains registration through a State Board's eminence provision as a manufacturing engineer typically would be rated eligible only for manufacturing engineering positions.

    2. Written Test -- Evidence of having successfully passed the Engineer-in-Training (EIT) examination, or the written test required for professional registration, which is administered by the Boards of Engineering Examiners in the various States, the District of Columbia, Guam, and Puerto Rico.

      Applicants who have passed the EIT examination and have completed all the requirements for either (a) a bachelor's degree in engineering technology (BET) from an accredited college of university that included 60 semester hours of courses in the physical, mathematical, and engineering sciences, or (b) a BET from a program accredited by the Accreditation Board for Engineering and Technology (ABET) may be rated eligible for certain engineering positions at GS-5. Eligibility is limited to positions that are within or closely related to the specialty field of the engineering technology program. Applicants for positions that involve highly technical research, development, or similar functions requiring an advanced level of competence in basic science must meet the basic requirements in paragraph A.

      Because of the diversity in kind and quality of BET programs, graduates of other BET programs are required to complete at least 1 year of additional education or highly technical work experience of such nature as to provide reasonable assurance of the possession of the knowledge, skills, and abilities required for professional engineering competence. The adequacy of this background must be demonstrated by passing the EIT examination.

    3. Specified academic courses -- Successful completion of at least 60 semester hours of courses in the physical, mathematical, and engineering sciences and in engineering that included the courses specified in the basic requirements. The courses must be fully acceptable toward meeting the requirements of a professional engineering curriculum as described in paragraph A.

In addition to the basic education requirements, you must have one year of full-time experience equivalent to the GS-13 level that is close or similar to the work of this job. The experience includes activities such as designing and developing electrical systems independently. 

PART-TIME OR UNPAID EXPERIENCE: Credit will be given for appropriate unpaid work on the same basis as for paid experience. Part-time experience will be credited on the basis of time actually spent in appropriate activities. To receive credit for such experience you must indicate clearly the nature of the duties and responsibilities in each position held and the average number of hours per week spent in such employment on your online resume.


Qualification requirements must be met within 30 days of the job opportunity announcement closing date.

For information on qualification requirements, see Qualification Standards Handbook for General Schedule Positions viewable on the web at http://www.opm.gov/qualifications.

HOW YOU WILL BE EVALUATED:

Your application will be evaluated first for the basic qualifications described above. The applications that meet the basic qualifications will be evaluated further against the following criteria:

Mastery of the advanced concepts, principles and practices of electronics engineering, in order to investigate, design, and provide consultative services to the development of an entire range of electronics for ground based and space-borne instrumentation for astrophysical data collection, as well as its associated test, calibration and ground support equipment. This will be evidenced by significant professional experience in overall systems design.

Ability to  provide expert consultative and coordinative services in such specialized areas as electrical systems design and analysis, system resource and error budgeting, documentation, proposal preparation, sophisticated computer modeling and fabrication and test activities pertaining to the development of state-of-the-art scientific instrumentation.

Ability to apply knowledge of advanced principles and practices of electronics engineering to the development and application of experimental theories, and emerging technology to the solution of complex instrument design problems.

Ability to apply new technological developments and experienced judgment in solving a variety of complex technical problems that cannot be solved using generally accepted methods.

Experience with the development of FPGA based digital and digital signal processing systems. Knowledge of electrical schematic and board layout CAD/CAM tools. Knowledge of analog design techniques and design simulation tools (i.e. SPICE).

Working knowledge of related engineering fields such as thermal, mechanical, optical and/or structural in order to resolve design and instrument packaging problems.

Demonstrable project leadership skills and the ability to provide technical direction in design, fabrication, assembly, and test activities to members of a diverse engineering and scientific team generate realistic project budgets and schedules and support multiple projects simultaneously.

Strong oral and written communications skills, including the ability to serve as a technical spokesperson for SAO in areas related to the electronics of advanced instrumentation. Demonstrable skill in proposal writing.

Important Note: Your resume and supporting documentation will be compared to your responses to the occupational questionnaire or other assessment tool for consistency. If a determination is made that you have rated yourself higher than is supported by your resume, you will be assigned a rating commensurate to your described experience. Your resume should provide detailed information regarding how your education and experience relate to this position, including the major duties and qualifications criteria listed.


To preview questions please click here.


BENEFITS:

The Smithsonian offers a comprehensive benefits package that includes, in part, vacation and sick leave, holidays, health/life insurance, accident insurance, and excellent retirement program options. Please see Benefits at http://www.cfa.harvard.edu/hr/postings/ for a complete description.



OTHER INFORMATION:



HOW TO APPLY:

Click on the "Apply Online" button on the upper right side of the page.

Please Note:
  • You must apply for this position online through the 'Apply Online' button and submit required supplemental documents (if they are relevant to you).
  • You may submit required documents by uploading them online during the application process;
    OR
    You may manually fax required documents.  Faxes are received by an automated system, not a physical fax machine.  Documents that are faxed as part of the application process must be sent with the system generated cover sheet by the closing date.  Documents faxed without the system generated coversheet are not retrievable and cannot be considered as part of the application package.  
  • The complete application package, including any required documents, is due in the Smithsonian Office of Human Resources on the closing date of the announcement by 11:59 PM Eastern Time.
  • If you are unable to apply online, paper applications may be accepted with prior approval of the Contact Person listed below.


REQUIRED DOCUMENTS:

Your application package must include the
following documents:
  • Detailed resume created in the USAJOBS Resume Builder.
  • Unofficial school transcripts, if the position has an education requirement or if you are using education to qualify.  If selected for the position, you must provide an official transcript before appointment.
  • Proof of U.S. accreditation for foreign study, if applicable.

AGENCY CONTACT INFO:

Judith Gallagher
Phone: 617-495-7374
Fax: 617-495-7263
TDD: 1-800-439-0183
Email: jgallagher@si.edu
Agency Information:
SMITHSONIAN
Human Resources
60 Garden Street Cambridge, MA 02138
Mail Stop 17
Cambridge, MA
02138
US
Fax: 617-495-7263

WHAT TO EXPECT NEXT:

Click on the "Apply Online" button on the upper right side of the page.

Please Note:
  • You must apply for this position online through the 'Apply Online' button and submit required supplemental documents (if they are relevant to you).
  • You may submit required documents by uploading them online during the application process;
    OR
    You may manually fax required documents.  Faxes are received by an automated system, not a physical fax machine.  Documents that are faxed as part of the application process must be sent with the system generated cover sheet by the closing date.  Documents faxed without the system generated coversheet are not retrievable and cannot be considered as part of the application package.  
  • The complete application package, including any required documents, is due in the Smithsonian Office of Human Resources on the closing date of the announcement by 11:59 PM Eastern Time.
  • If you are unable to apply online, paper applications may be accepted with prior approval of the Contact Person listed below.

Additional Information:

  • The Smithsonian does not pay relocation expenses. A recruitment bonus may be paid.
  • The Smithsonian embraces diversity and equal employment opportunity (www.si.edu/oeema).


Control Number: 329874900
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