Laser Characterization Engineer for NIF | Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory

Feb. 9, 2023

Reference #: REF3264L
Job Code: SES.3 Science & Engineering MTS 3 / SES.4 Science & Engineering MTS 4
Organization: Engineering
Position Type: Career Indefinite
Security Clearance: Anticipated DOE Q clearance (requires U.S. citizenship and a federal background investigation)
Drug Test: Required for external applicant(s) selected for this position (includes testing for use of marijuana)
Medical Exam: Not applicable

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Company Description

Join us and make YOUR mark on the World!

Are you interested in joining some of the brightest talent in the world to strengthen the United States’ security? Come join Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory (LLNL) where our employees apply their expertise to create solutions for BIG ideas that make our world a better place.

We are committed to a diverse and equitable workforce with an inclusive culture that values and celebrates the diversity of our people, talents, ideas, experiences, and perspectives. This is essential to innovation and creativity for continued success of the Laboratory’s mission.

Pay Range

$148,650 - $200,328 Annually for the SES.3 level 
$178,410 - $240,384 Annually for the SES.4 level

Please note that the pay range information is a general guideline only. Many factors are taken into consideration when setting starting pay including education, experience, the external labor market, and internal equity.

Job Description

 We have multiple openings for experienced Laser Engineers. You will research, characterize, and field advanced laser technology and systems in the National Ignition Facility and Photon Sciences (NIF & PS) Directorate. Areas of specialization include solid state laser physics and technology, semiconductor laser diodes; sensors and instrumentation; systems engineering; laser performance modeling; and documentation. These positions are in the Laser Systems Engineering and Operations (LSEO) Division, within the Engineering Directorate.

These positions will be filled at either level based on knowledge and related experience as assessed by the hiring team. Additional job responsibilities (outlined below) will be assigned if hired at the higher level.

In this role, you will

  • Research and characterize high average power CW or pulsed laser systems and technologies incorporating essential new physics to support evolving missions.
  • Conduct experiments in the fields of high power, and energy laser physics.
  • Execute and interpret advanced laser experiments that test new physics and modeling capability in collaboration with laboratory scientists and engineers.
  • Design and develop metrology capabilities to characterize performance of high power, high energy laser systems.
  • Define and prioritize tasks and goals to ensure that programmatic needs are addressed in a timely and efficient manner.
  • Apply advanced knowledge in identified areas, interacting with mid-level and senior management.
  • Perform other duties as assigned.

Additional job responsibilities, at the SES.4 level

  • Manage project scope, schedule, and budget.
  • Participate on relevant committees that decide laser design, deployment, and utilization issues acting as a subject matter expert.
  • Develop research and development proposals.


  • Ability to obtain and maintain a U.S. DOE Q-level security clearance which requires U.S. citizenship.
  • Master’s degree in Physics, Optics, or Electrical Engineering, or the equivalent combination of education and previous relevant experience.
  • Advanced knowledge in solid state and/or fiber lasers, laser pulse characterization, and nonlinear optics as applied to laser development and operations.
  • Significant experience designing, building, testing, and optimizing performance of laser diodes and diode-pumped short pulse laser systems.
  • Significant experience working independently and as a member of a multidisciplinary team, and ability to lead advanced research and development activities.
  • Successful record of accomplishment in scientific research and development.
  • Advanced problem solving, troubleshooting, decision making, and analytical skills necessary to independently anticipate, analyze, advise, recommend, and approve appropriate actions and implement solutions to complex issues.
  • Experience planning and directing work with technical objectives, estimating effort, setting milestones, and managing within designated budget.
  • Advanced written and verbal communication skills necessary to author technical and scientific reports and publications, deliver scientific presentations, and interact with a diverse group.

Additional qualifications at the SES.4 level

  • Substantial experience in the areas of high average power pulsed and/or CW lasers.
  • Substantial project management experience on mid-to-large scale projects.
  • Substantial track record of publications in refereed journals as the primary author.

Qualifications We Desire

  • PhD in Physics, Optics, or Electrical Engineering.
  • Knowledge in Joule-class short pulse lasers and amplifiers.
  • Knowledge in high average power solid state laser technology.
  • Knowledge in high-power diode lasers, laser diode packaging technologies, and/or micro-optics.

Additional Information

All your information will be kept confidential according to EEO guidelines.



Position Information

This is a Career Indefinite position, open to Lab employees and external candidates.

Why Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory?

  • Included in 2022 Best Places to Work by Glassdoor!
  • Flexible Benefits Package
  • 401(k)
  • Education Assistance
  • Flexible schedules (*depending on project needs

Security Clearance

This position requires a Department of Energy (DOE) Q-level clearance.  If you are selected, we will initiate a Federal background investigation to determine if you meet eligibility requirements for access to classified information or matter. Also, all L or Q cleared employees are subject to random drug testing.  Q-level clearance requires U.S. citizenship. 

Pre-Employment Drug Test

External applicant(s) selected for this position must pass a post-offer, pre-employment drug test. This includes testing for use of marijuana as Federal Law applies to us as a Federal Contractor.

Equal Employment Opportunity

We are an equal opportunity employer that is committed to providing all with a work environment free of discrimination and harassment. All qualified applicants will receive consideration for employment without regard to race, color, religion, marital status, national origin, ancestry, sex, sexual orientation, gender identity, disability, medical condition, pregnancy, protected veteran status, age, citizenship, or any other characteristic protected by applicable laws.

We invite you to review the Equal Employment Opportunity posters which include EEO is the Law and Pay Transparency Nondiscrimination Provision.

Reasonable Accommodation

Our goal is to create an accessible and inclusive experience for all candidates applying and interviewing at the Laboratory.  If you need a reasonable accommodation during the application or the recruiting process, please use our online form to submit a request. 

California Privacy Notice

The California Consumer Privacy Act (CCPA) grants privacy rights to all California residents. The law also entitles job applicants, employees, and non-employee workers to be notified of what personal information LLNL collects and for what purpose. The Employee Privacy Notice can be accessed here.