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Head of Electronic Engineering

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Job Details

  • Full Time
  • £47,725 - £53,028 (dependent upon qualifications and experience)
  • Science and Technology Facilities Council, UK ATC, Royal Observatory, Edinburgh
  • Closes 25th February 2018
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Head of Electronic Engineering
UK ATC, Royal Observatory, Edinburgh
Salary £47,725 - £53,028 (dependent upon qualifications and experience)
Full time
Open - Ended

About Us
The UK Astronomy Technology Centre (UK ATC) of the Science and Technology Facilities Council is a national centre for the design and development of world leading astronomical instruments, telescopes and systems for both ground-based and space-based astronomy programs. The electronics and detector engineering group at the UK ATC designs, builds and supports integration of precision scientific instruments involving complex detector systems, cryogenic, vacuum and instrument control electronics for both astronomy and non-astronomy applications.

About The Role

The electronics group at the UK ATC is engaged in project work from the control of high precision cryogenic mechanisms, active mirrors design and control for AO systems, characterisation and the test of focal plan systems for astronomical instruments. The group leader will be expected to have a technical leadership role in various projects, to manage the group and their development and lead proposals for external funding in relevant technical areas.

Reporting to the Head of Engineering you will lead the strategy development of the group, help develop project opportunities and select and assist in prioritising suitable projects to pursue. You will lead the group in carrying out these projects and engage with the wider UK ATC engineering groups and project partners. This will include recruiting, managing, training and selecting staff to fulfil the project portfolio. You will successfully balance the resources within the Group to achieve the project deliverables and sustain the long term strategic development aims.

Project Related Responsibilities will include:

  • project/work package management
  • developing specifications and producing detailed designs
  • designing and implementing electronics and control subsystems
  • implementing data acquisitions, process, data analysis and control systems documentation
  • planning assembly, integration and testing of electronic assemblies
  • responsibility for the delivery of electronics and control system hardware
  • participating in instrument commissioning activities.

About You:

As our projects range from small internal teams to large international multi-disciplinary teams working across groups from Universities, Laboratories and Industry you would be expected to have very good communications skills both internally and externally. You will also be able to demonstrate:

  • BEng (1st class or 2:1) or higher (e.g. MEng, MSc), in a relevant discipline (e.g. Electrical and Electronic Engineering, Physics, Electronics) or equivalent
  • experience of managing technical staff
  • successful track record in leading complex electronic systems from the definition of their specifications to their delivery. A self-motivated and dedicated approach to understanding the continuously evolving microelectronics design tools and methods and be able to demonstrate a systematic and analytical approach to problem solving
  • an interest in a technical leadership career with a good awareness of basic electronic principles and how these apply to modern design
  • you must be reliable and flexible with good interpersonal skills, have the ability to integrate and work effectively within the existing close knit team and be proactive in mentoring and developing the team
  • good written and verbal communication skills (in English) and the ability to communicate effectively with colleagues, project partners and customers are essential
  • you must also be willing and able to travel to sites both in the UK and overseas as requisite for their projects.


An exceptional index linked pension scheme, 30 days leave allowance and flexible working are offered, as well as an onsite nursery, subsidised restaurant, gym and sports facilities. A relocation allowance may also be available where applicable.

Full details of offered benefits can be found on STFC’s careers pages (http://www.stfccareers.co.uk).

To Apply:

Applicants are required to include a cover letter outlining their suitability for this role. Please also state where you saw this role advertised.

Applications are handled by UK SBS; to apply please click the apply now button. Applicants who are unable to apply online should contact us by telephone on +44 (0)1793 867000.

The closing date for applications is 25th February 2018.

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