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SLAC National Accelerator Laboratory is one of 17 Department of Energy (DOE) National Laboratories, and operated by Stanford University on behalf of the DOE. SLAC develops and operates some of the world’s premier science facilities, including the first hard X-ray free-electron laser. Research at SLAC explores the structure and function of matter and the properties of energy, space and time, at the smallest and largest scales, all with the goal of solving problems facing society and advancing human knowledge.



Ultra-High Vacuum / Precision Assembly Specialist

Job Requisition #: 2517
Classification Title: Science and Engineering Associate 1
Grade: I
Location: Menlo Park, CA (HQ)
# of openings: 1



Do you enjoy collaborating with a diverse group of people to solve complex challenges?  Does contributing and/or supporting breakthrough discoveries in science and working with unique experimental instrumentation in a world-leading scientific research environment excite you?

The Vacuum Group within the Stanford Synchrotron Radiation Lightsource (SSRL) Directorate at SLAC National Accelerator Laboratory (SLAC) seeks an Ultra-High Vacuum / Precision assembly specialist to join our team. SSRL a Directorate of SLAC is a national and international users' research facility. SSRL produces extremely bright x-rays as a resource for researchers to study our world at the atomic and molecular level. Over 1600 scientist from all over the world utilize our research facility and resources each year.  Our group is tasked with the upkeep of the Labs vacuum systems i.e. the Injector, SPEAR, and Beam Lines.  We fabricate, modify, and maintain these systems.

As an Ultra-High Vacuum / Precision assembly specialist, you will coordinate, execute, plan, and prioritize routine and non-routine fabrication, assembly and maintenance activities involving Ultra-High Vacuum systems and other customized experimental installations. You will perform preventative maintenance and develop enhancements to scientific instrumentations. Additionally, you will closely work with the Vacuum Group area manager to carry out field activities; you will direct and assign work to others, communicate instructions and specifications to technicians and other staff in support of scientific and research programs. This position is responsible for recognizing, understanding, and applying safe and authorized work practices to any assignments.


Participate in technical research utilizing and/or developing experimental equipment, devices, specimens, plans, designs, reports, and/or data analysis. May have supervisory responsibilities overseeing technicians and/or support staff.


  • Support scientific and research programs related to area of specialization; analyze data, monitor and oversee experimental process, and design and develop prototypes, specialized equipment, and/or systems.
  • Modify, repair, and troubleshoot complex equipment and experimental systems.
  • Prepare and review drawings, material lists, requisitions, job orders, engineering change requests, and other documents associated with development, fabrication, assembly, installations, and testing.
  • Coordinate and work on scientific or engineering installations; plan and execute various phases of an operation, oversee schedule of equipment operations, and supervise routine maintenance.
  • Acquire and maintain tools, equipment, and chemicals associated with experimental or engineering projects.
  • Maintain documentation related to research studies and protocols, and perform administrative duties related to equipment and systems associated with research or engineering projects, as assigned.
  • Liaise between researchers, students, technical staff, scientists, vendors, and other university staff; serve as a resource, providing training and practical guidance.
  • Oversee the work of technicians and other staff associated with the group/projects, and provide guidance to technicians, operators, and others working in particular scientific or engineering function area.

* - Other duties may also be assigned


Education & Experience:

  • Associate degree or certificate of completion in a related engineering or related scientific discipline, or three years of equivalent work experience or combination of education and relevant experience.
  • Working knowledge of ultra-high vacuum (UHV) all-metal systems and practices typically associated with three years' experience with UHV systems and components strongly preferred.

Knowledge, Skills and Abilities:

  • Experience applying scientific and engineering principles and practices to perform technical services and support.
  • Experience with data analysis, experimental process, design, and development of prototypes, equipment, and/or systems related to area of specialization.
  • Ability to write clear documentation, perform administrative duties, and research protocol maintenance related to research studies and/or scientific/engineering projects.
  • Experience with software applications, systems, or programs relevant for the job.
  • Ability to interpret and determine validity of data and check own work.
  • Ability to communicate, liaise, and work with staff, students, faculty, and outside vendors.
  • Ability to effectively supervise and train a diverse work staff.
  • Demonstrated self-directed troubleshooting ability in solving routine vacuum problems, and implementing corrective actions where applicable. Must be familiar with UHV-compatible materials.
  • Practical and theoretical knowledge and understanding of vacuum science and technology related to Ultra High Vacuum system operation, design and fabrication.
  • Familiarity with materials, techniques and procedures used in vacuum system construction.
  • Demonstrated ability to accurately detail and record system performance, system conditions, and individual or team activities.
  • Experience in machine shop tools and practices, precision measuring equipment, welding procedures, brazing procedures and UHV cleaning methods.
  • Must be able to read and interpret engineering blueprints. Must have good mechanical skills, coupled with fabrication, assembly, and processing of UHV systems that achieve 10-10 Torr.
  • Must be proficient in the use and application of a vast array of precision measuring instruments, familiar with ANSI Y14.5 symbols.

Experience in one or more of the following is strongly preferred

  • Must be familiar with the use and application of ion gauges; roughing, ion, and turbomolecular pumps, cryopumps, residual gas analyzers, vcand helium mass spectrometer leak detectors.
  • Experience in photon beam line system and Accelerator system.
  • Extensive experience dealing with the interactions between Accelerators, Beam Lines, and Users on Beam Line.

Certifications and Licenses:

  • Must possess and maintain a valid California non-commercial driver’s license and a good driving record.

SLAC Competencies:

  • Effective Decisions:  Uses job knowledge and solid judgment to make quality decisions in a timely manner.
  • Self-Development:  Pursues a variety of venues and opportunities to continue learning and developing.
  • Dependability:  Can be counted on to deliver results with a sense of personal responsibility for expected outcomes.
  • Initiative:  Pursues work and interactions proactively with optimism, positive energy, and motivation to move things forward.
  • Adaptability:  Flexes as needed when change occurs, maintains an open outlook while adjusting and accommodating changes.
  • Communication:  Ensures effective information flow to various audiences and creates and delivers clear, appropriate written, spoken, presented messages.
  • Relationships:  Builds relationships to foster trust, collaboration, and a positive climate to achieve common goals.


  • Frequently grasp lightly/fine manipulation, perform desk-based computer tasks, lift/carry/push/pull objects that weigh up to 10 pounds.
  • Occasionally stand/walk, sit, twist/bend/stoop/squat, grasp forcefully.
  • Rarely kneel/crawl, climb (ladders, scaffolds, or other), reach/work above shoulders, use a telephone, writing by hand, sort/file paperwork or parts, operate foot and/or hand controls, lift/carry/push/pull objects that weigh >40 pounds.

* - Consistent with its obligations under the law, the University will provide reasonable accommodation to any employee with a disability who requires accommodation to perform the essential functions of his or her job.


  • May be exposed to high voltage electricity, radiation or electromagnetic fields, lasers, noise > 80dB TWA, Allergens/Biohazards/Chemicals /Asbestos, confined spaces, working at heights ?10 feet, temperature extremes, heavy metals, unusual work hours or routine overtime and/or inclement weather.
  • May require travel.


  • Interpersonal Skills: Demonstrates the ability to work well with Stanford colleagues and clients and with external organizations.
  • Promote Culture of Safety: Demonstrates commitment to personal responsibility and value for safety; communicates safety concerns; uses and promotes safe behaviors based on training and lessons learned.
  • Subject to and expected to comply with all applicable University policies and procedures, including but not limited to the personnel policies and other policies found in the University's Administrative Guide,


SLAC National Accelerator Laboratory is an Affirmative Action / Equal Opportunity Employer and supports diversity in the workplace. All employment decisions are made without regard to race, color, religion, sex, national origin, age, disability, veteran status, marital or family status, sexual orientation, gender identity, or genetic information. All staff at SLAC National Accelerator Laboratory must be able to demonstrate the legal right to work in the United States. SLAC is an E-Verify employer.


Final candidates are subject to background checks prior to commencement of employment at the SLAC National Accelerator Laboratory.

Internal candidates, who are selected for hire, may require degree verification and/or credit checks based on requirements of the new position.


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