Engineer – Optical Alignment

Posted on
Current state: Approved
City: Logan
State/Province: UT
Country: United States
Contact Person: Mickelle Anderson
Contact Email: [email protected]
Institution: Utah State University Space Dynamics Laboratory
Application Due Date: Thursday, December 31 2020
Web Link:

The Space Dynamics Laboratory (SDL) is seeking an optical alignment engineer to augment our engineering teams in the development of space sensor systems operating in the ultra-violet to far-infrared. The selected candidate should have expertise in electro-optical systems and demonstrate a broad understanding of the design, development, test, and fielding of complex space electro-optical systems.


 SDL, a University Affiliated Research Center, has been developing innovative technologies and solutions for cutting-edge DoD and intelligence programs for almost six decades. Our expertise is in space and airborne IR, VIS, UV, and RF sensors, small satellite technologies, test and calibration, cybersecurity, data visualization and assurance, and ground stations.


Key Responsibilities:

· Subject matter expert in optical alignment and optical alignment tools and methods

· Mentoring optical engineers in alignment methods, error budgets, error analysis and tools

· Conducting trade studies and engineering analyses of optical alignment and tests for optical instruments

· Vendor sub-contract management including lens/mirror fabrication and optical coatings

· Investigating and advising on the feasibility of new projects

· Working closely with other engineers encompassing a broad range of disciplines (mechanical, electrical, systems, contamination, calibration, and quality)

· Identify and recommend new alignment methods, tools, and appropriate training to increase SDL’s capabilities

· Other responsibilities related to the qualifications described below

Required Qualifications:

· BS in an appropriate field (i.e. Optical Sciences, Electrical Engineering, Physics)

· Experience with optical instruments and associated customers

· Experience supporting optical design with alignment and manufacturing error budgeting methods, theories, and research techniques in the investigation and solutions of electro optical problems

· Experience with optical alignment of UV/EO/IR imaging, non-imaging, and LASER systems including all optical elements (mirrors, lenses, filters, gratings, baffles, stops and detectors)

· Experience with optical test including WFE, line of site alignment, position, spot size, focus, and vignetting

· Experience with optical element inspection including WFE and focal length

· Experience with optical element cleaning and handling

· Experience writing alignment planning/procedures

· Experience supporting system level testing and verification 

· Experience with interferometers, laser trackers, and theodolites

· Knowledge of thermal, mechanical, and space environment effects of optical systems

· A track record of successful collaborations with teams of engineers

· Demonstrated proficiency communicating clearly with personnel of varying technical and professional backgrounds

· Proven proficiency as a creative thinker and problem-solver

· Must be a US citizen

· Willing to travel to support programs


Preferred Qualifications:

· 5+ years of experience in electro-optical system design and analysis

· Experience with optical element inspection including index of refraction, surface roughness, BRDF, Reflectance, Scratch/Dig, and contamination

· Experience with LASER testing including profile, beam waste, divergence, beam quality, and irradiance profile

· Experience managing vendor sub-contracts including lens/mirror fabrication and optical coatings

· Experience with design, analysis, and calibration of optical instruments

· Experience with CMMs, gauges, micrometers, and other mechanical inspection tools

· Experience using Zemax, CODE V, FRED, or other optical design software

· Electro optical system performance data processing

· Experience with the following:

    o Space optical systems

    o Optical alignment & metrology with interferometers, laser trackers, and theodolites

    o Optical component tolerancing, specifying, and external vendor fabrication management

    o Writing technical reports, presentations, plans, and procedures

    o Working closely with customers

    o Leading small technical teams


SDL Benefits:

At SDL, we take pride in and highly value our employees. SDL offers competitive salaries and a fantastic benefits package, including:

· Flexible work schedules

· Generous annual, sick, and holiday paid leave

· A variety of inexpensive-premium, high-quality health, dental, vision, and life insurance options

· Generous employer retirement contribution (Up to 14.2% of annual gross earnings)

· Discounted USU tuition of 50% for employees and dependents

· Access to USU facilities and USU staff privileges


Instructions to applicants:

Along with the online application, please attach:

1) Cover Letter

2) Resume


Once you’ve complete the initial application, you will receive an e-mail requesting you to complete a video digital interview. For more information, please visit:


Please contact us if you do not receive a confirmation email within 24 hours of applying.