Electro-Optical Systems Engineer

Penn State University

Electro-Optics Center in Freeport, PA
Date Announced:
Date Closing:
open until filled
Job Number:
Level/Salary Band:
  • 03 – N – Exempt
  • 04 – O – Exempt
  • 05 – P – Exempt
Work Unit:
Applied Research Laboratory
Electro-Optics Center (EOC)
Full/Part Time:


The Electro-Optics Center (EOC) at The Pennsylvania State University (PSU), located in Freeport, PA, is seeking an experienced Electro-Optical Systems Engineer to work closely with a multi-disciplinary team of engineers and scientists to design electro-optical systems supporting various military and intelligence community customers. Responsibilities include: Lead and contribute to key technical efforts in the development of a broad range of novel electro-optical sensor systems supporting imaging, remote sensing, computer/machine vision, hyperspectral, laser radar, and high energy laser applications, these efforts will include the design trades, component selection, analysis, modeling, software, and algorithm development required to push the state of the art of these systems; guide optical system development from bench-top and field-testable prototype to transitioned, field-deployable product, and support operationalization of techniques through field integration and testing activities, data analysis, and lab experimentation; document work in memoranda, sponsor briefs, conference proceedings, and journal articles, and brief senior leadership and sponsors as required; and work with leadership to develop project/staffing plans, participate in strategic business planning, new business development and internal research and development (IR&D) efforts, and mentor and assist in the professional development of junior staff. This job will be filled as a level 3, level 4, or level 5, depending upon the successful candidate's competencies, education, and experience. Typically requires a Bachelor's degree or higher in an Engineering or Science discipline (Master's degree preferred) or higher plus five years of related experience, or an equivalent combination of education and experience for a level 3. Additional experience and/or education and competencies are required for higher level jobs. A Master’s or PhD in Imaging Science/Optics/Photonics, Electrical Engineering, or Physics is desired. The following experience areas are preferred: Industry, consulting, or academia; C++ programming and control systems theory; application of basic principles of photonics and spectroscopic instrumentation; spectroscopic techniques, such as Raman spectroscopy, fluorescence, Raman, UV, VIS, near infrared (NIR), SWIR, MWIR, and LWIR applications, FTIR-based techniques, or other spectroscopic applications and device techniques; and a demonstrated ability to graduate prototype systems from the bench-top environment into real world operations. Preferred soft skills include: Comfort in briefing very senior and large audiences; strong organizational and planning skills, with a demonstrated ability to effectively lead and inspire high performance teams of technical staff in solving complex problems; a demonstrated ability to collaborate in technical activities, as evidenced by co-authorship of technical papers, presentations, proposals, and white papers with authors from other organizations; and experience interacting with senior leadership and decision makers in USG. Possession of a current secret clearance with eligibility for TS/SCI clearance is highly desired. Required experience areas include: Research background in optical science and engineering (such as microscopy, holography, spectroscopy, lidar, adaptive optics, and tomography); hands-on electro-optical systems engineering, including electrical, mechanical, and optical subsystem assembly and alignment; electro-optical test fixture development; systems troubleshooting, data collections, and statistical analysis; control and diagnostic software development; test equipment such as oscilloscopes, spectrum analyzers, vibration sensing equipment, and computer acquisition and analysis software, as well as analog and digital circuit design, and signal processing; Fourier spectral analysis; probability and statistics; and computer vision. You should possess excellent written and verbal communication skills, good interpersonal skills, good technical writing skills, and have the ability to work independently, as well as part of a multidisciplinary team. Candidate selected will be subject to a government security investigation. You must be a U.S. citizen to apply. Employment with the Applied Research Laboratory will require successful completion of a pre-employment drug screen. This is a one-year, fixed-term renewable appointment.

These salary bands have been established to provide salary guidelines for staff positions.

Salary Band Minimum Midpoint Maximum
A $16,584 $24,456 $32,328
B $18,240 $26,904 $35,556
C $19,728 $29,592 $39,456
D $21,708 $32,568 $43,416
E $24,312 $36,468 $48,612
F $27,228 $40,848 $54,456
G $30,012 $45,744 $61,500
H $34,188 $52,140 $70,080
I $38,988 $59,424 $79,908
J $43,716 $67,740 $91,812
K $50,712 $78,600 $106,488
L $58,836 $91,176 $123,528
M $68,232 $105,756 $143,292
N $80,508 $124,788 $169,068
O $93,492 $147,252 $201,024
P $110,340 $173,760 $237,192
Q $126,396 $199,056 $271,728
R $151,668 $238,872 $326,088