Electronics Engineer II (4721)

Engineers, Technical Specialists and Technicians Socorro, New Mexico


Position Description:


Position Summary

The National Radio Astronomy Observatory (NRAO) is seeking to hire an electronics engineer to support the creation, installation, operation, and maintenance of various systems on the Very Large Array and Very Long Baseline Array. This position requires a candidate with electrical engineering experience that includes an application of Radio Frequency (RF) principles, schematic and circuit design, assembly fabrication, and usage of standard test equipment,


The NRAO has a long history of developing new technology to enable forefront research and operation in radio astronomy. This work occurs in a collaborative environment with technicians, engineers, and scientists. By joining NRAO, an employee has a direct contribution to expanding the observatory’s state-of-the-art facilities and equipment used by scientists around the world.


This position is based in Socorro, New Mexico at the Domenici Science Operations Center on the campus of New Mexico Institute of Mining and Technology (www.nmt.edu). Socorro is a small, historical city in the Rio Grande Valley, 75 miles south of Albuquerque. In addition to competitive pay, NRAO provides excellent paid time off benefits (vacation and sick leave). Medical, dental and vision plans are effective first day of employment. NRAO’s retirement benefit contributes an amount equal to 10 percent of a qualified participants base pay. No contribution is required of the employee; we also offer an optional supplemental, tax-deferred plan for employee retirement contributions.


Job Duties Summary

The successful candidate will work independently and with other engineers and technicians to support ongoing developments for both future and existing instruments. Responsibilities will include designing, implementing, testing, and maintaining hardware and some software for multiple systems.


Functional responsibilities for this position include:

  • Working with other engineers to support VLA and VLBA design, development, and maintenance activities across multiple subsystems such as weather stations, power supplies, antenna control units, and RF modules.
  • Support the Observatory’s effort to characterize and minimize Radio Frequency Interference (RFI) by measuring emissions and improving RFI mitigation in place,
  • Use of computer assisted engineering and design software and equipment to design electronic equipment, components, systems or structures for radio telescopes and related systems.
  • Modification of existing software and hardware to add new features and improvements, or to correct original design problems.
  • Troubleshooting, repairing, and testing of PCBs, electronic assemblies, and antenna array subsystems,
  • Proactive compliance with NRAO and government safety policies and procedures in own work area,
  • Other duties may be assigned based on the applicant’s skills and the Observatory’s needs


Work Environment

Work is typically performed in a laboratory environment, but the successful candidate may occasionally be required to work outdoors such as at the VLA site or at VLBA sites. The successful candidate may be required to travel domestically and internationally by air carrier and to travel by car between NRAO sites.


Position Requirements:


Minimum Education

A Bachelor’s degree in Electrical Engineering or related field.


Minimum Experience

At least one year of experience with in electrical engineering or a related field.


Preferred Experience

Two or more years of experience with design, creation, testing, and operation of systems as described within the position’s job duties.


Competency Summary

The successful candidate will have skills and demonstrated competencies in:

  • Knowledge of electrical circuits and components and ability to develop custom electronic circuits (analog, digital, embedded, RF) and their PCBs
  • Ability to test and troubleshoot electrical hardware with lab equipment
  • Use of computers and software packages needed to perform job duties


Physical Demands

Most work will be performed on a computer at a desk or a lab bench for extended periods. The employee will occasionally be required to lift and carry heavy lab equipment (up to 40 pounds) for relocation or installation of test apparatus, and to squat, kneel, or crawl to reach electrical/physical connections in tight spaces behind racks of under lab benches.


Additional Requirements

  • Must maintain a current Driver's License
  • May be required to drive Observatory vehicles


The Observatory requires staff to be fully vaccinated against covid-19 to access our facilities.  An offer of employment will be considered contingent until the selected applicant provides proof of vaccination.  A selected applicant may request consideration for an accommodation for a disability or for a sincerely held religious belief.



Application Instructions:


Apply online at the careers page.  You will need to be prepared to upload your current CV/Resume and a letter of application describing interest and suitability for the position.


Equal Opportunity Employer Statement:


AUI is an equal opportunity employer.  Women, Minorities, Vietnam-Era Veterans, Disabled Veterans, Veterans and Individuals with Disabilities are encouraged to apply.  To view our complete statement, please visit http://jobs.jobvite.com/nrao/jobs.  If you require reasonable accommodation for any part of the application or hiring process due to a disability, you may submit your request by sending an email to [email protected].



The NRAO is an equal opportunity employer (M/F/D/V)


The National Radio Astronomy Observatory is a facility of the National Science Foundation operated under cooperative agreement by Associated Universities, Inc. PM20