Job Listings

Engineering Support Specialist

Penn State
Job Location:
University Park, Pennsylvania
Facilities Management

Job Number: REQ_0000015711


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We are searching for an Engineering Support Specialist to join our Facilities and Instrumentation Department at the Applied Research Laboratory (ARL) at Penn State University. This position will assist with various activities throughout the department and to provide technical support to R&D engineers.

Responsibilities include:

  • This position will include tasking such as: electrical instrumentation fabrication, mechanical test hardware fabrication and test facility modifications, upgrades and repairs.
  • Facility operator for all testing facilities that are operated under this office. Responsible for the setup, instrumentation, and data acquisition hardware related to the testing facilities.
  • Troubleshoot complex equipment problems and resolve issues or report issues to supervisor and be able to recommend solutions. Use basic electronic test equipment (digital multi-meter, insulation tester, oscilloscope).
  • Inspect, test and calibrate parts and equipment as directed.
  • Assist other research personnel with their work as needed, working cooperatively in a small research group.
  • May work as part of a test project support team, in the laboratory, or in the field.

Higher level responsibilities include:

  • Evaluate, recommend, integrate, assist in design and implement new technologies for test hardware, test setups and facility hardware. Identify, evaluate, plan and coordinate project hardware assembly and integration task schedules. This will require electrical instrumentation fabrication, mechanical hardware fabrication and facility modifications, upgrades and repairs.
  • Oversee or lead repair effort on equipment and testing facilities and direct lower level Engineering Support Specialist as required.
  • Inspect, test and calibrate parts and equipment as directed while having a high level of understanding of the tasks. Acquire and archive test data and be able to make a data quality assessment.
  • May work as part of a test project support team, including selected task leadership roles, in the laboratory, or in the field.
  • Train students and staff on proper operation of laboratory equipment.
  • Develop and document operating procedures.

This position will be filled as a level 3, or level 4 depending upon the successful candidate's education and experience. Typically requires an Associate's Degree or higher in a technical program plus four years of related work 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.

Required skills and experience include:

  • Ability to interpret electrical schematics and mechanical drawings
  • Understanding of the function and use of various electronic components such as resistors, capacitors, inductors, linear and switching regulators, transistors, operational amplifiers, FPGAs, etc.
  • Ability to utilize ECAD programs and tools
  • Ability to troubleshoot circuit level issues in equipment and on PCBs
  • Understanding and knowledge of common electrical formulas
  • Proficient solder skills, ability to assemble surface mount parts on PCBs
  • Ability to build cable assemblies and use solder and crimp style connectors
  • Ability to us basic hand and power tools safely, such as drill, soldering iron, heat gun and etc

Preferred skills and experience include:

  • Associate's degree in Electrical Engineering
  • Prior experience in electronic design, mechanical design
  • Prior experience using sensors such as pressure, temperature, level, current, voltage, power and etc.
  • Prior experience with PLC systems, operation and programming
  • Prior experience with data acquisition systems, operation and programing
  • Experience using Microsoft Excel, LabVIEW and Altium Designer

ARL at Penn State is an integral part of one of the leading research universities in the nation and serves as a University center of excellence in defense science, systems, and technologies with a focus in naval missions and related areas.

Applicant selected will be subject to a government security investigation. You must be a U.S. citizen to apply. Employment with the ARL will require successful completion of a pre-employment drug screen.

ARL is committed to diversity, equity, and inclusion; we believe this is central to our success as a Department of Defense designated University Affiliated Research Center (UARC). We are at our best when we draw on the talents of all parts of society, and our greatest accomplishments are achieved when diverse perspectives are part ofour workforce.

FOR FURTHER INFORMATION on ARL, visit our web site at

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