Systems Engineer - WATC

Apply now Job no: 517186
Classification:Research Professional 4
Grade:Grade 81
Work type:Staff Full-time
Administrative Unit:University of Alaska Fairbanks
School/Business unit:UAF Geophysical Institute
Location: Fairbanks
Categories: Engineering/Computer Science, Research/Science/Grants

Position Summary:

The Wilson Alaska Technical Center (WATC) was created to recognize the accomplishments and growing stature of nuclear treaty monitoring support programs at the Geophysical Institute of the University of Alaska Fairbanks. WATC is an externally funded organization and critical component of the newly-formed and growing Geophysical Detection of Nuclear Proliferation University Affiliated Research Center (UARC), which was established for research, development, testing, evaluation, and use of scientific and technological capabilities to better sense, locate, characterize, and assess the threat potential of nuclear activities worldwide. We are searching for a Systems Engineer who will take an active role in hybrid power system management for government customers. The successful applicant will have the opportunity to join WATC’s growing research community. This recruitment is open internally to current UA employees or those otherwise eligible to apply to internal postings. ***US CITIZENSHIP IS REQUIRED FOR THIS POSITION. TO BE CONSIDERED FOR THIS POSITION, PLEASE LIST YOUR CURRENT CITIZENSHIP STATUS IN EITHER YOUR COVER LETTER OR RESUME***


20Project Management: Coordinate logistics for annual maintenance of all of the HPS systems operated by WATC. Maintain accurate inventory control for all parts and consumables needed for Operations & Maintenance (O&M) of the HPS systems. Maintain detailed and up-to-date project documentation. Coordinate travel schedule and logistical support for HPS O&M. Develop and execute a robust testing and evaluation program for HPS systems. Maintain current technical documents and drawing for all HPS systems. Effectively communicate with WATC staff and mission partners current HPS status and O&M needs. Develop a training program for HPS operators to include basic troubleshooting and maintenance. Assist WATC staff in infrasound and seismic field work upon request.Essential
30Data Systems Support and Development: Work with the WATC Analysis Team and Engineering Team to develop and improve WATC computing systems. Develop software to support system state of health, command and control, and systems efficiency. Support the Analysis Team in maintaining linux virtual machine servers.Essential
50Hybrid Power Systems (HPS) Engineering: Lead all Hybrid Power System (HPS) maintenance and operations activities operated by Wilson Alaska Technical Center (WATC). Ensure all WATC operated HPS maintain high operational uptime throughout the year. Lead and coordinate all HPS unscheduled maintenance responses. Work with WATC staff to maintain current HPS remote monitoring systems and continually look for and implement improvements. Maintain and develop Human Machine Interface (HMI) systems. Maintain proficiency and currency on component level End of Life, obsolescence, and failures. Including Programmable Logic Controller (PLC), diesel motors, generators, batteries, wind generators, solar panels/charge controllers, fuel tanks, pumps, heaters, breakers/relays, monitoring sensors, environmental controls, etc. Develop remote HPS operations and novel systems and procedures for operating remote HPS. Continually search for and implement system improvement through engineering design, emerging technologies, automation, maintenance procedures, environmental controls, and remote monitoring. Maintain detailed maintenance logs and system documentation.Essential

WATC operates and maintains more than twenty infrasound and seismic arrays worldwide, providing real-time data that are used for monitoring nuclear proliferation, volcanic eruptions, and earthquake activity. WATC is committed to providing a safe and inclusive environment to everyone on the team. Our staff & faculty are committed to working to build and sustain an equitable and inclusive work environment where cultural diversity is celebrated and valued. We believe that diversity benefits and enriches our work and community.

This recruitment is open internally to current UA employees or those otherwise eligible to apply to internal postings.


Ability to operate and maintain Diesel Motors and gensets.

Expert skills and ability in PLC operations.

Expert knowledge of DC power systems, specifically Solar & Wind power.

Expert knowledge in Battery systems.

Advance computer programming (python, linux) skills.

Expert knowledge and skills in remote monitoring and command and control.

Advance analytical skills.

Ability to successfully lead the work of others.

Knowledge of research methods and analytical procedures.

Ability to assess the nature of an inquiry and formulate a response in line with the inquiry.

Ability to communicate program objectives and results effectively to managerial, technical and non-scientific personnel.

Required Education and Experience: 

Master’s degree in mechanical engineering, electro-mechanical engineering, physics, or a closely related field, and at least 4 years’ experience in a relevant field (experience with power system maintenance and operations, computing experience, etc.) . US citizenship is required by the funding agency.

As a public, regional, comprehensive university, UAF is committed to building a culturally diverse and inclusive organization and strongly encourages women, minorities, individuals with disabilities, and veterans to apply.

Application Process:

To ensure consideration, please apply prior to the review date. 

This recruitment is open internally to current UA employees or those otherwise eligible to apply to internal postings.


To apply for this position, please provide a cover letter, resume, and contact information for three professional references with your application.  Please submit your application no later than 6/30/2021 at 11:55 PM Alaska Time.  The review of this posting will start on 7/1/2021. This posting will be closed once it is filled.

If you need assistance applying to this posting, please contact GI - Office of Human Resources at 907-474-6498. 

Applicants needing a reasonable accommodation to participate in the application and screening process should contact the UA Human Resources office at 907-450-8200.

Term Position:

This position is a term-funded position and is reviewed annually for contract renewal at the University's discretion.

Affirmative Action Statement:

UA is an AA/EO employer and educational institution and prohibits illegal discrimination against any individual:

Background Check:

The successful applicant is required to complete a background check. Any offer of employment is contingent on the background check.

Probationary Period:

Pursuant to University Regulation 04.07.020, new employees of the University are employed in an at-will probationary status for the first six months of employment. During the probationary period, employment may be terminated for no reason or any reason. Promoted employees also serve a probationary period with limited rights of retreat.

Public Disclosure Statement:

Your application for employment with the University of Alaska is subject to public disclosure under the Alaska Public Records Act.

University of Alaska is a Drug Free Workplace. University of Alaska is a Drug Free Workplace

Training Policy:

It is the policy of the University of Alaska (UA) that all employees are required to complete training to meet the requirements of the positions they hold, and to complete the required training within a specified period to remain employed at the UA.

Contact Information:

If you have any questions regarding this position, please contact GI HR at 907-474-6498.

Advertised: Alaskan Daylight Time
Applications close:

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