Research Engineer

May 16, 2017
Institution Type
Four-Year Institution
About The Unit: This position supports the research and teaching mission of the Physical Sciences Division at The University of Chicago. Performs mechanical/structural engineering and design tasks for a broad range of scientific and technical research projects. Facilitates the design and fabrication of mechanical and electro-mechanical devices and systems, as well as instrumentation for scientific experiments. Evaluates existing designs for performance, safety, and reliability. Prepares technical documentation of engineering tasks. Generates quotations, reports, and presentations.

Unit Job Summary: Collaborates closely with faculty, students, and technical staff to design hardware prototypes and custom fabricated equipment. Interfaces with and collaborates with local professional machinist staff. In addition, identifies and maintains relationships with machine shops outside the university. 60% Provide design services for research projects, including consulting with faculty and technical staff on the design and fabrication of experimental set-ups, estimating costs, time, and equipment required to meet project objectives, and design specification. Work with faculty and technical staff to facilitate the design and fabrication of various mechanical and electro-mechanical devices and systems. Similarly, facilitate design, fabrication and installation of instrumentation for experiments, primarily prototype development or pieces with short production runs. 30% Work with students and postdocs on their research projects, helping them design and communicate their custom-fabricated equipment needs to professional machinists. In addition, identifies and maintains relationships with machine shops outside the university. 10% Other duties as assigned

Unit Education: Bachelor's degree in engineering discipline required.

Unit Experience: A minimum of two years of relevant experience required. Engineering and Design experience. University or National Lab experience preferred. Ability to identify and implement creative solutions to technical research problems with atypical and challenging constraints. Strong background in modern 3D CAD software (e.g., Inventor) and modeling with finite element analysis methods Familiarity with thermal modeling procedures preferred Strong mechanical aptitude with a strong attention to detail Strong analytical and problem solving skills Familiarity with modern automated fabrication procedures and machining Ability to make administrative/procedural decisions and judgments. Knowledge of laboratory operations and/or procedures; plus principles and procedures of scientific research. Strong interpersonal and (oral & written) communication skills and the ability to work effectively with a wide range of customers in a diverse community.

Unit Job Function Competencies: Knowledge of relevant engineering principles, concepts and practices required. Advanced computational skills required. Analytical skills required. Problem-solving skills required. Creativity required. Attention to detail required. Organizational skills required. Verbal and written communication skills required. Ability to work independently and as part of a team required. Manual dexterity required. Knowledge of computers and relevant software required. Knowledge of CAD software packages required. Ability to train others preferred.

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