Electrical Engineer

Job ID
Location : Location
US-MA-Woods Hole

Job Summary

The Chemical Sensors Lab in the Applied Ocean Physics and Engineering Department is currently searching for an Electrical Engineer to work with a cross-disciplinary team focused on developing biogeochemical sensors and instrumentation for ocean and environmental applications.  Areas of interest include the ocean carbon system, coral reef health, microplastics, sea level rise, and deep ocean exploration. Significant duties include designing, prototyping, testing, and characterizing various sensor systems on the lab bench, leading electrical engineering tasks including board design and fabrication, and subsequently deploying and validating the sensors at sea.  Familiarity with optics or optical sensing and/or ocean sensors is a plus.  Strong technical skills and ability to document engineering designs required. A desire to propose and pursue novel ideas and technologies is encouraged.  This is a regular, full-time, exempt position, and is eligible for benefits.


This is an entry to early career level position designed to encourage the connection and application of academic training to results-oriented projects in support of scientific and research activities. Initially this position will have direct supervision to achieve structured and assigned objectives, and is expected to later expand to broader and more independent tasks.  The candidate will be expected to work on tasks requiring creativity and independent thinking, along with a proven understanding of fundamental research and engineering principles.  The candidate will have expertise in electrical engineering through either a recognized degree or through experience at a previous engineering position.


The internal working title for this position could be either Engineer I or Engineer II The final level of the position will be determined commensurate with the selected candidate's level of education & experience.

Essential Functions

Essential functions will depend on the specific skillset of the selected applicant and will include a subset of the following:

  • Designs and fabricates PCBs for power distribution, analog signal generation and acquisition, serial communication, and microprocessors.
  • Experience with standard PCB CAD software is required.
  • Develops and applies signal processing techniques. 
  • Designs and assembles all electrical components of sensors.
  • Selects and programs embedded systems in Python, C, and/or C++. 
  • Performs laboratory development, testing, calibration, and characterization of novel sensors and instrumentation.
  • Performs field testing of novel sensors and instrumentation.
  • Analyzes data using Matlab or Python and clearly documents and presents results.
  • Field testing and operation of sensors that requires travel and/or research cruises of up to 5 weeks at a time and could be upwards of three times per year.



  • As deemed necessary by supervisor

Education & Experience

Electrical Engineering degree with minimal work experience, or evidence of an established, specialized engineering skill gained through experience (minimum 3 years) in the absence of a formal degree.  Experience working to develop and test analytical techniques or in ocean technology will be viewed positively.


Engineer I:

Bachelor’s degree in electrical engineering with minimal work experience.  This is an entry level position.


Engineer II:

Bachelor’s degree in electrical engineering discipline with 2+ years of demonstrated related experience or a Master’s degree in electrical engineering.

Special Requirements

  • Must be able to obtain a TWIC card


Physical Requirements

Physical duties for this position include but are not limited to, ability to lift less than 25 lbs independently, 2 times per day; carry 10-25 lbs, 2 times per day. Visual abilities to include near, far, peripheral, depth perception, and ability to distinguish basic colors. Hearing requirements include the ability to hear and respond to instructions, communicate effectively in loud areas (pier/dock, warehouse). Other physical tasks include occasional prolonged standing/walking; use of hands for basic /fine grasping and manipulation, repetitive motion, reaching above and below the shoulders, pushing, pulling, kneeling, bending, twisting, and stooping. Other occupational requirements include talking, traveling, working around others, and with others. Will be exposed to dust or other irritants and electrical/mechanical/power equipment hazards. Physical duties are subject to change.


Sea Duty

Sea Duty for this group is typically less than 8 weeks/year and can vary year-to-year. At sea, may work at least 8 hours per day and, at times in excess of 12 hours per day, 7 days per week. Sleep and work hours can deviate from those on land. May be expected to work on watch schedule (such as 8 hours on and 8 hours off or 12 hours on and 8 hours off) for all or part of a cruise or to work as hours are needed to accomplish the planned work. May need to travel during holidays and for long distances to and from foreign ports. May experience rudimentary living and working conditions, with shared and basic living quarters and laboratories. May experience bad or extreme weather conditions, including heavy seas, winter weather or hot, tropical weather. Work on deck may occur in both hot and cold conditions around the clock. Sea conditions will lead to active ship motion. Should be able to climb steep and vertical ladders and able to enter and exit compartments through hatches, doors, and sills. Should be able to carry heavy gear and participate in the loading and unloading of the ship as well as in the activities on deck and in the labs during the cruise. Shipboard environment may include: confined areas, shared sleeping quarters (berths) and bathroom facilities, small and basic berthing, fixed meal times and basic menus. Modest levels of heating, cooling, ventilation, and illumination, limited or no email and internet access and limited off-duty and recreational facilities (library, lounge, movies). May be exposed to potential allergens and irritants, including paint fumes. May experience constant and intermittent loud noises, and slippery and uneven surfaces.


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