Deputy Division Head, Electronics (4539)

Engineers, Technical Specialists and Technicians Socorro, New Mexico


Position Description:


Position Summary

The National Radio Astronomy Observatory (NRAO) announces an opportunity for a full-time Deputy Division Head in the Electronics Division at the Domenici Science Operations Center. The Deputy Division Head will have a direct role in the operations of existing radio astronomy arrays, lead the Division’s growth in Systems Engineering methodology, and support the design and construction of the next generation Very Large Array (ngVLA).


Generally, the Deputy Division Head will provide technical leadership and operational support for the Division. The position will also directly lead a small group of Systems Engineers and technicians. The Deputy will take a leadership role in establishing best practices in systems engineering methodology, operations, repair, maintenance, and design of the equipment supported by the Division. This includes the Jansky Very Large Array (VLA), the Very Long Baseline Array (VLBA), and the proposed ngVLA.


The position will be based Socorro, NM. The NRAO Science Operations Center is located on the campus of New Mexico Institute of Mining and Technology ( Socorro is a small, historic city in the Rio Grande Valley, 75 miles south of Albuquerque. With over 300 days of sunshine each year, Socorro offers ample access to outdoor recreation.


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 participant’s 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 essential duties and responsibilities will include:

  • Duties of Division Head in Division Heads absence, including management of the Division.
  • Providing technical guidance to electrical engineers, technical specialists, and technicians.
  • Supervision, coordination, budgeting, and training of a group of Systems Engineers and a technician that provide high-level and multi-system support.
  • Working with engineers, technical specialists and Observatory scientists to identify and solve complex and unique electrical engineering problems
  • Leading division efforts on requirements development, system design, integration, and Verification and Validation.
  • Engineering analysis, design, and execution of major projects and systems.  Make decisions and determinations in design, procurement, manufacture, erection, testing, and some degree of initial operation.
  • Directing other engineering and technical personnel in the fabrication and testing of equipment, and determines methods, procedures, and conditions for testing.  Ensure manufacturing, construction, installation, and operational testing conform to functional specifications and requirements.
  • Carrying out supervisory responsibilities in accordance with the Observatory’s policies and applicable law.
  • Proactive compliance with NRAO and government safety policies and procedures in own work area is expected.
  • Other duties as assigned, relevant to the scope of this role.


Work Environment

Work is typically performed in a research or development environment; will be required to stand and sit, and perform fine hand manipulation.  Must work near moving mechanical parts and/or with electrical equipment.  Occasionally required to climb or balance, and stoop, kneel, and crouch.  May occasionally work at high altitudes, and in high, precarious places and in outside weather conditions, and may be exposed to chemicals, or the risk of electrical shock.  Some travel may be required to other NRAO sites.


Position Requirements:


Minimum Education

BS Electrical Engineering


Preferred Education

Advanced degree in Electrical Engineering


Minimum Experience

Seven years of experience in a combination of the following areas:

  • Leading electronics hardware design, maintenance and/or operations
  • Leading technical teams through requirements development and engineering reviews on requirements and designs
  • Budgeting and planning of programs or proposals
  • Project leadership and management


Preferred Experience

Ten or more years of experience in Minimum Experience items plus experience in the following areas:

  • Demonstrated experience with requirements management and system modelling tools, such as DOORS and NoMagic
  • INCOSE (International Council on Systems Engineering) Certification
  • PMP Project Management Professional Certification


Competency Summary

An excellent understanding of analog and digital electronics is required. Excellent presentation, oral and written skills is required to facilitate effective and efficient communication with colleagues. Must be proficient with Microsoft Office programs and engineering management software tools. Must possess a valid driver’s license. Familiarity is needed with computer-assisted engineering and design software and equipment in designing equipment, components, systems or structures for radio telescopes and related systems.  Must have experience in modifying existing hardware to add new features and improvements, or to correct original design problems. 


Application Instructions:


Click the “Apply” button below. Please be prepared to upload your current CV/Resume and a letter of application describing interest and suitability for the position. Applicants must be currently authorized to work in the United States on a full-time basis.


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  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



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