About the Role

Could you design and develop the electronics for compact atomic clocks that can operate in GPS denied environments or can withstand the rigours of a launch into space? We have an exciting opportunity for an electronic hardware engineer to join our team within NPL’s Time & Frequency Department to do just this.

You will be working within a small team designing and testing analogue and digital electronics with application to laser frequency control and compact clock development. This involves schematic capture, PCB layout, and hands-on circuit development and debugging. The work is part of NPL’s leading-edge time and frequency activity and will have tangible outputs in new product development as well as the opportunity for publications in peer-reviewed scientific journals.

Some of this development will be for applications in space and, for this work, you will need to learn the route to space qualification for the electronics you develop. Much of our work is collaborative and you will be liaising with partners both in the UK and Europe. You will be expected to take a hands-on approach and will be involved in integrating the electronics into a complete physics (laser & opto-electronics) package. You will also have the chance to provide electronics engineering advice to other projects in the Department.

You will be joining the National Physical Laboratory (NPL) which is the UK's National Measurement Institute and is a world-leading centre of excellence in developing and applying the most accurate measurement standards, science, engineering and technology available. More specifically you will be joining our Time & Frequency Department (www.npl.co.uk/time-frequency) at an exciting time. We have some of the most precise optical atomic clocks in the world, which will one day re-define the second and are developing compact atomic clocks for use in GPS denied environments. We also provide timing services to financial institutions for share trading and are embarking on the development of a new timescale facility that will have the potential to feed into Critical National Infrastructure. We are also developing new detection techniques ranging from identifying cracks in pipes without removing layers of insulation to detecting earthquakes using the existing undersea fibre cable network.

We are now working in a hybrid way, with a mix of remote and office working. We strive to offer a great work life balance - if you are looking for part time or flexible options, we will try to make this work where business possible. This will be dependent on the kind of role you do and part of the business you work in.
About You

The ideal candidate will be a graduate in electronic engineering, or a closely related field, who is a rigorous problem solver able to work both independently and as part of a team. You will have proven professional experience in schematic capture and PCB layout and hands-on experience in the development and debug of complex electronic systems.

The role would suit an electronics engineer who already has a few years’ experience in a similar role, but we are also interested in hearing from more experienced candidates who could make a wider contribution to the Department

Essential criteria:

  • Graduate in electronic engineering, or a closely related discipline
  • Professional experience in schematic capture and PCB layout for mixed signal systems
  • Experience in prototyping and debugging of complex electronic systems
  • Practical electronics skills, including fine-pitch surface mount soldering
  • A rigorous approach to problem solving, ability to work independently and as part of a team, as well as excellent written and verbal communication

Desirable criteria:

The following skills would be advantageous, although training can be provided

  • Experience with RF/microwave electronics
  • Knowledge of product compliance (CE/UKCA) procedures, including EMC testing
  • Working knowledge of control theory, including design of closed-loop feedback systems
  • Experience with microcontroller programming, particularly in C/C++, with an understanding of version control
  • Working knowledge of FPGAs, including VHDL/Verilog firmware development
When completing the supporting statement make sure that you clearly demonstrate the transferable skills you have that match the person specification (essential criteria).
Please note:  Applications will be reviewed, and interviews conducted throughout the duration of this advert therefore we may at any time bring the closing date forward.  We encourage all interested applicants to apply as soon as practical. 
If you are applying for this position and you have been displaced by the Ukrainian crisis, please apply and email [email protected] or text 07976873073 highlighting you are applying under the "We support Ukraine" initiative - Ukraine employment support - NPL
About The Company

NPL and BEIS have strong commitments to diversity and equality of opportunity, and welcome applications from candidates irrespective of their background, gender, race, sexual orientation, religion, or age, providing they meet the required criteria. Applications from women, disabled, black, Asian and minority ethnic candidates in particular are encouraged. All disabled candidates (as defined by the Equality Act 2010) who satisfy the minimum criteria for the role will be guaranteed an interview under the Disability Confident Scheme.

We’re transforming. As a national laboratory, we’re exploring even more commercial routes to market and that’s presenting us with greater opportunity – for you and us. Our success relies on the diversity and talent of our people, we strive to nurture and respect individuals to ensure everyone feels valued and supported to excel in their chosen field. This value is at the core of our organisation.

We believe in a culture of fairness by treating everyone on the basis of their own individual merits and abilities regardless of their own or perceived identity, background or any other factor irrelevant to a person’s work. At NPL we are committed to the health and well-being of our employees. Flexible working and social activities are embedded in our culture to create a positive work-life balance, along with a broad range of benefitsNPL’s values are at the heart of what we do and they shape the way we interact, develop our people and celebrate success.

As part of our commitment to diversity & inclusion, we signed up to the Institute of Physics' Project Juno in 2015 as a Juno Supporter. NPL were proud to be awarded Juno Practitioner status in 2018. NPL also joined Stonewall as a Diversity champion in 2015, participating in their annual Workplace Equality Index for the equality of LGBT+ community at NPL. In 2018, NPL became a member of the Business Disability Forum and joined the disability confident scheme as level 1 committed employer.

To ensure everyone has an equal chance, we’re always willing to make reasonable adjustments to the recruitment process. If you would like to discuss, please contact us.