Senior Mechanical Engineer

Submission Information
Publish Date: 
Saturday, November 18, 2023
Archive Date: 
Saturday, December 16, 2023
Job Summary
Job Category: 
Science Engineering
Institution Classification/Type: 
Research Laboratory
United Kingdom of Great Britain and Northern Ireland
Job Announcement Text: 

Senior Mechanical Engineer

Location Science and Technology Facilities Council, UK Astronomy Technology Centre, Edinburgh.

Salary: Band E (S1) £51,500 to £56,650 per annum (dependent on skills and experience).

Contract Type: Open-Ended

Hours: Full-Time (We understand the importance of work-life balance, and are happy to discuss the possibility of flexible working with applicants)


Come and do the kind of engineering that made you want to be an engineer. Stretch your technical skills while building human understanding. Promote sustainability and create new materials. And, alongside world-leading scientists, technicians and technologists, shape projects that improve lives, and daily life, in the UK and far beyond.

Put simply, come, and discover the impact you can make when you’re equipped, encouraged and inspired to perform to your very best.

We are looking to recruit a Senior Mechanical Design Engineer to work in the Mechanical Engineering Group of the UKATC at the Royal Observatory Edinburgh site.

The Mechanical Engineering group is one of the disciplinary groups at the ATC from which multi-disciplinary teams are formed to support our existing and future instrument program. This includes development of instruments for the VLT and the ELT telescopes, Earth observation and space telescope projects, and various technology development initiatives.

The technical management aspect of the role is to support the head of group and other senior engineers in developing tools, procedures and process to support efficient delivery of the instrument program. There will also be some technical management of work packages and line management of junior engineers.

The technical role will involve proposal, evaluation and development of conceptual opto- mechanical systems to meet project requirements and goals. This will include development of mechanical layouts, parts and manufacturing drawings using 3D CAD.

Training will be made available as required in specialist areas or expertise such as Autodesk and Ansys CAE software, opto-mechanics, vacuum and cryogenics.

Duties will include:

  • Working with the head of group and other senior engineers to develop the group structure, processes, and procedures consistent with the efficient delivery of world-class scientific instrumentation.
  • Line management, technical supervision and mentoring of junior engineers.
  • Developing technical specifications from high level requirements typically within a team including a scientist, project manager and systems engineer. Undertake the conceptual designs to meet these requirements. The post-holder will be required to propose and evaluate solutions.  Effort and cost estimation will also be required with an aim to deliver quality, safe and efficient products on time.
  • Utilizing 3D CAD to develop conceptual design solutions and detailed manufacturing and assembly drawings.    
  • Structural and thermal analyses will be performed by CAE and traditional methods. He or she must have a clear understanding of the fundamental principles of structures, materials, and engineering tolerancing.
  • Documentation will be produced including, design reports, technical specifications for work to be sub-contracted, test procedures, reports and operation and maintenance manuals.
  • The postholder will take part in design reviews, vendor liaison, assembly/integration/testing, commissioning and on occasions the installation at overseas telescopes of individual instruments or sub systems. Networking and collaborating with other engineers and professionals and liaising with internal and external stakeholders.
  • The postholder may be required to liaise with laboratory technicians, workshop staff, and scientists to ensure the successful manufacture, inspection and assembly of components and systems.

Person Specification

  • Minimum HNC level qualification in mechanical engineering or equivalent
  • Extensive experience as a design engineer is required including work in at least one of the following fields: precision mechanisms, optics, structures, vacuum, cryogenics.
  • Extensive experience in performing structural and thermal analysis.
  • Experience managing a technical team, work package or activity.
  • Good working knowledge of mechanical engineering principles
  • Strong communication, organizational and presentational skills, enabling the succinct transfer of information to a wide and diverse audience.

We ask some of the biggest questions in the universe, to answer some of the biggest challenges in the world. Together, our scientists, technologists, engineers, technicians and business support team explore the unknown across every field you could think of. And they turn what they find into work that changes the world around us.

What could you achieve with the world-leading facilities and experts of one of Europe's largest research organisations by your side? Join us and discover what's possible.

STFC values their employees by offering a benefits package designed to provide an excellent work/life balance. This includes 30 days’ annual leave, 10.5 public and privilege holidays, flexible working hours, exceptional average salary pension scheme, social and sporting activities and societies and a subsidised restaurant.

Applicants who are unable to apply online should contact us by telephone on 07710 115815.

The closing date for applications is 10th December 2023

Application Deadline: 
Saturday, December 16, 2023
Selection Deadline: 
Saturday, December 16, 2023
Current Status of Position: 
Accepting Applicants
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