Optical Engineer, Mid

Key Role:

Research, design, analyze, build, integrate, and test laser and optical systems in laser weapon systems and Intelligence, Surveillance, and Reconnaissance (ISR) electro-optical systems, leveraging expertise in different laser and optical approaches, algorithms, requirements, and dependencies. Analyze the development of laser weapon and ISR requirements from operational requirements, such as output power, beam quality, jitter, atmospheric compensation, camera requirements, size, weight, prime power, and cooling. Research applicable technologies and analyze the development of plans and the building and integration of laser and ISR systems, including laser sources, fast steering mirrors, optics mountings, telescopes, sensors, sensor mounts, exit windows, optical benches, and gimbals. Design, develop, test, and document internal and external interfaces and evaluate options to achieve requirements, including operating in stressing environments, survivability, maintainability, reliability, and operability. Conduct jitter, finite element, thermal, stress or strain, and packaging analysis and design issue resolution, as needed. Assist with component or material selection and predictions of laser and environmental effects on materials and structures based on thermal loading, including developing requirements and designing opto-mechanical layouts for all optical components from concept to hardware. Develop and apply advanced optical engineering design methods, theories, and research techniques to the investigation and solution of complex and advanced problems.

Basic Qualifications:

  • 5+ years of experience with Intelligence, Surveillance, and Reconnaissance (ISR) electro-optical systems development, analysis, test and evaluation (T&E), and installation
  • Experience with image processing for object detection, recognition, identification, and tracking
  • Experience with optical test equipment including power meters, photodiodes, detectors, interferometers, wavefront sensors, spectrometers, or beam profilers
  • Experience with the integration of laser systems and major components of a laser system, including the optical train
  • Experience with laser weapon systems including gain media, pump sources, thermal management and control systems, opto-mechanics, optical coatings, substrates, characterization and specification, beam shaping, and beam control
  • Experience in analyzing the effectiveness of HEL interactions with materials and components, laser propagation theory, and experiment, including modeling and characterizations of laser performance in military environments and ranges
  • Experience in working with design and analysis software, including FRED, Zemax, WaveTrain, and MATLAB, and creating models using these packages in the design and layout of optical ISR systems
  • Ability to perform imaging and single cell detector specification and characterization, radiometric prediction, testing, and data analysis for imaging applications
  • Secret clearance
  • Bachelor’s degree

Additional Qualifications:

  • 5 years of experience with high energy laser (HEL) systems, including fiber laser technology
  • 5+ years of experience with U.S. Navy or other armed services’ laser/electro-optical (EO) systems
  • Experience with tracing interface documents from optical sensors to user interface of the weapon system as well as optical system design and engineering trade analysis
  • Experience with ultrashort pulse lasers (USPL) research, including propagation and material effects
  • Knowledge of practical problems associated with the design, building, integration, and test of laser weapon systems
  • Completion of Technical Laser Safety Officer (TLSO) training and certification


Applicants selected will be subject to a security investigation and may need to meet eligibility requirements for access to classified information; Secret clearance is required.

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