Job Listings

Research Engineer (CHESS) - Materials Research Laboratory

University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign
Job Location:
Urbana, 61820
Laboratory and Research
Research Engineer

Center for Hypersonics and Entry System Studies (CHESS)

Materials Research Laboratory

The Grainger College of Engineering

University of Illinois Urbana-Champaign


The Center for Hypersonics and Entry System Studies (CHESS) center housed in the Materials Research Laboratory (MRL) in The Grainger College of Engineering is seeking a highly motivated Research Engineer. This position offers tremendous opportunities for a qualified individual who wants to be involved in exciting, ground-breaking research endeavors! The individual will serve as a member of the MRL Central Research Facilities staff with a focus on providing engineering support in the operation, model preparation, instrumentation, and data analysis of the Plasmatron X inductively coupled plasma facility.   CHESS operates the Plasmatron X, the largest inductively coupled plasma (ICP) in the United States, for hypersonic thermal protection material science and non-equilibrium plasma research. For more information, please visit our website at:  

The individual's job responsibilities include:
*          Assist with testing and research at the Plasmatron X facility.

o   Assist Principal Investigators with planning, implementation, and evaluation of research projects.

o   Operate Plasmatron X facility, instrumentation, and equipment after proper training.  The individual will then be responsible for data collection during tests, along with analysis, organization, and archiving scientific results.

o   Design models, track fabrication and prepare equipment for testing including calibrating equipment to ensuring proper operation per manufacturers' instructions.

o   Train students on the operation of the facility and instrumentation.

o   Track project management activities against projected timelines and expected deliverables.
*          Communicate with external stakeholders regarding experiments conducted in the Plasmatron X facility.

o   Help prepare reports and presentations for scientific meetings, sponsoring agencies, and visits to the facility.
*          Collaborate with faculty and CHESS research staff in preparing materials for research proposals.
*          Perform other research engineer duties as assigned.

MINIMUM REQUIREMENTS & QUALIFICATIONS (Education, Experience, Training, Knowledge):
*          Bachelor's degree in a STEM field.
  • Demonstrated hands-on experience working with hardware, data collection tools, and/or data analysis tools, either through paid work experience or technical coursework.
  • Computer skills including Microsoft Word, Excel, and PowerPoint.
  • Strong interpersonal skills and ability to make sound value judgments.
  • Demonstrated ability to express concepts and findings coherently, verbally, technical drawings and in writing, to supervisors and external stakeholders.
  • U.S. citizenship.
PREFERRED REQUIREMENTS & QUALIFICATIONS (Education, Experience, Training, Knowledge):
  • Master's degree in a STEM field.
*          Three or more years of experience working in experimental testing field.
*          Three or more years of experience with data collection, data curation, data processing and analysis.
*          Practical and relevant knowledge and skills in/of vacuum or plasma systems and instrumentation.
*          Knowledge of CAD software packages, LabView, and computer languages (i.e., python, Matlab, C++).


This is a full-time, academic professional position appointed on a 12-month service basis. The expected start date is as soon as possible after the closing date. The minimum annual salary for this position is $70,000. Work authorization is not available for this position. Remote/hybrid work is not available for this position.


Applications must be received by April 20, 2024. Apply for this position using the Apply Now button at the top or bottom of this posting. Please upload your cover letter, resume, and names/contact information for three references. Applications not submitted through will not be considered. For further information about this specific position, please contact Summer Redman at For questions regarding the application process, please contact 217-333-2137.

The University of Illinois System is an equal opportunity employer, including but not limited to disability and/or veteran status, and complies with all applicable state and federal employment mandates. Please visit Required Employment Notices and Posters to view our non-discrimination statement and find additional information about required background checks, sexual harassment/misconduct disclosures, and employment eligibility review through E-Verify.

Applicants with disabilities are encouraged to apply and may request a reasonable accommodation under the Americans with Disabilities Act (2008) to complete the application and/or interview process. Requests may be submitted through the reasonable accommodations portal, or by contacting the Accessibility & Accommodations Division of the Office for Access and Equity at 217-333-0885, or by emailing

Requisition ID: 1023027

Job Category: Research

Apply at:
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