Software Engineer I-III (4407)

Computers/Software Charlottesville, Virginia Socorro, New Mexico Albuquerque, New Mexico


Position Description:

Position Summary

The National Radio Astronomy Observatory (NRAO) is seeking to recruit a full-time software engineer to join their CASA team to design, develop and maintain the code base for radio interferometer data reduction and analysis. They are responsible for all aspects of the software engineering lifecycle from requirements derivation through design, development, and integration in to telescope operations. CASA Software Engineers must be capable of formulating complex technical solutions suitable for operational deployment from broad scientific objectives in a research environment.  They must possess both software engineering domain knowledge as well as the educational background and ability to understand the basic scientific concepts of radio interferometry.


The position will be based at either our headquarters in Charlottesville, VA on the grounds of the University of Virginia (; at the Science Operations Center in Socorro, NM on the campus of New Mexico Institute of Mining and Technology ( or at our Albuquerque, NM office.


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

Responsibilities will include, but are not limited to:

  • Developing new radio interferometer data reduction algorithm implementations as needed by new scientific objectives;
  • Maintaining existing algorithm implementations in support of ongoing telescope operations and research endeavors;
  • Evolving CASA code base to be modern, lean, efficient, and well understood;
  • Building and maintaining data processing and analysis software infrastructure necessary to load and store data reduction inputs and outputs;
  • Operating in a team environment with scientific staff;
  • Taking ownership of a subset of functionality and provide technical direction, decision-making, and subject matter expertise in that area with limited guidance or specific direction.


Work Environment

The position is located at the NRAO in Socorro, NM or Charlottesville, VA. Work is typically performed in a research or development environment. Must be able to operate a personal computer. May occasionally work at high altitudes. Must be able to communicate effectively both verbally and in writing.  Occasional travel will be required.


Position Requirements:

Minimum Education

Bachelor's degree in computer science or a related field.


Preferred Education

Advanced degree and background that includes physics or mathematics is highly desired.


Preferred Experience

At least one year of direct or related experience in software development commensurate with stated qualifications. Candidates with progressively more responsible experience will be considered for a higher-level position ranking.


Competency Summary

  • Experience with large development projects in C++ and Python, and familiarity with UI frameworks such as Qt
  • Experience with scientific software development, numerical processing techniques, linear algebra, digital design signal processing concepts, and mathematical packages such as Python/numpy
  • Experience with software development in Linux
  • Familiarity with High Performance Computing and Big Data concepts including distributed data storage, parallel I/O, parallel processing, and memory caching
  • An understanding of formal software engineering principles including design, documentation, ticketing systems, version control, testing frameworks, and requirements traceability
  • Ability to learn new scientific concepts and apply learning to engineering implementation, specifically in radio astronomy and interferometry


Application Instructions:

Select the "Apply" button below. Applicants must be prepared to upload a current CV/Resume and a letter of application describing interest and suitability for the position. Applications will be reviewed beginning January 7, 2019 and will continue until the position is filled.


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.