W. M. Keck Observatory
  • competitive salary
  • Salary

4 weeks of annual paid vacation, 100%-paid employee health insurance, a 403(b) plan, a highly regarded tuition assistance program for dependent children (K-12 grade), and an unmatched focus on excellence


W. M. Keck Observatory in Kamuela, HI is looking to hire an Astronomical Instrument Technician. Do you have a background in electronics, engineering, or optics? Do you like to have 3-day weekends? Would you like to join a team that takes care of its employees? If so, please keep reading!

This position earns a competitive salary with lots of room for growth. We also provide great benefits and perks, including 4 weeks of annual paid vacation, 100%-paid employee health insurance, a 403(b) plan, a highly regarded tuition assistance program for dependent children (K-12 grade), and an unmatched focus on excellence. If this sounds like the right opportunity for you to leverage your engineering skills and learn more about astronomy and optics, apply today!

ABOUT W. M. KECK OBSERVATORY

From Hawaii's Maunakea, astronomers around the world use our observatory to observe the universe with unprecedented power and precision. Our twin observatory telescopes are the world's most scientifically productive optical and infrared telescopes! With our highly advanced technology, we focus on service and stewardship and are very committed to being the science leader in large land-based telescopes. We support the mission of the observatory and work to unravel the mysteries of the universe!

Each employee is a part of our mission. We provide meaningful jobs and a lively place to pursue careers. Employees are able to work with a variety of equipment and scientific applications for the good of humanity and pure science. We work in a wonderful setting and environment and are passionate about what we do. We're looking for more individuals to join us!

A DAY IN THE LIFE OF AN ASTRONOMICAL INSTRUMENT TECHNICIAN

As an Astronomical Instrument Technician, you care for some of our observatory's most valuable assets, which makes the important science that takes place there possible. You maintain, repair, and make upgrades to our instruments. You also provide technical support for the astronomical instrumentation on the summit, including electronic, mechanical, and optical systems. Additionally, you work with adaptive optics as well as laser, telescope, and other optical systems. You ensure that they are in good operating condition, available for observing, and safe by performing fabrication, installation, optical alignment, calibration, troubleshooting, and repair activities. In order to fabricate and modify electronic assemblies, you carefully follow schematic drawings or other engineering documentation.

To improve performance, you also participate in the modification of instrumentation. You work in close collaboration with instrument engineers and staff astronomers. In order to ensure parts, supplies, and literature are available when needed, you keep on top of shop maintenance. This includes procuring supplies and spare parts as well as maintaining catalog and instruction manual files. As required, you participate in nightly laser guide star operations. You act as a backup for the daily telescope operations support activities on the summit. Always happy to help, you drive our vehicles and participate in snow and ice removal in order to transport employees to and from the summit in a safe manner. You take great pride in keeping our important science instrumentation operating at peak efficiency!

QUALIFICATIONS FOR AN ASTRONOMICAL INSTRUMENT TECHNICIAN

  • Associate degree in electronics, engineering, or a related field
  • 3 years of experience in a highly technical or science environment
  • Experience in at least one of the following: vacuum Dewars, liquid or closed cycle cryogen systems, or optics
  • Knowledge about modern electronics technology including analog and digital integrated circuits, computer electronics, and computer communications
  • Knowledge about the methods, materials, and tools used in the fabrication, construction, maintenance, and repair of electrical and electronic equipment
  • Knowledge about the operation of electronic test equipment, including oscilloscopes, analyzers, pulse and function generators, and power supplies
  • Ability to read complex electronic schematics as well as analyze and design general-purpose analog and digital circuits
  • Ability to work with alertness around complex and sensitive optics and instrumentation
  • Ability to pass a physical and work at the high altitude of 14,000 feet
  • Proficiency in Microsoft Office
  • Valid driver's license and a good driving record

Experience working at an astronomical observatory is preferred, but multiple factors will be taken into consideration. Experience with electronic design, using Unix, and working with lasers would also be highly desirable.

Do you have excellent interpersonal and communication skills? Are you collaborative? Do you react well under pressure? Are you respectful, considerate, professional, and tactful? Do you accept responsibility for your own actions and follow through on commitments? If so, you might just be perfect for this Astronomical Instrument Technician position!

WORK SCHEDULE

This full-time position in electronics, engineering, and optics typically works four ten-hour days. Part of the drive to the summit is paid time but not the roundtrip. We provide breakfast. Occasionally, working nights and weekends may be required.

READY TO JOIN OUR TEAM?

If you feel that you would be perfect for this job, apply now using our initial 3-minute, mobile-friendly application. We can't wait to hear from you!

Location: 96743

W. M. Keck Observatory
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