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Senior Optical R&D Engineer


Pacific Biosciences

Job Location

1305 O’Brien Dr.
Menlo Park, CA 94025
United States

Job Description

Pacific Biosciences is seeking the best talent for developing laser induced fluorescence light delivery designs that are revolutionizing DNA sequencing.

The Senior Optical R&D Engineer will work to develop and qualify commercial-ready laser light deliver systems comprising lasers, fiber optics, free space beam optics, and autofocus and auto-alignment systems in DNA sequencing instruments and/or integrated on consumable chips.

The individual must be a self-starter with exemplary organizational skills. Excellent interpersonal, communication and presentation skills are a must. The applicant must have experience working within a multi-disciplinary team in a fast-paced, technically challenging environment.
Potential Responsibilities:
  • In collaboration with Systems Engineering and the Chip Design team, develop concepts for future instrument illumination schemes potentially including low cost miniature or integrated optics.
  • Participate in the specification, design, development, and testing of light delivery systems for future sequencing instruments.
  • Work with outside vendors to establish sources of optical components, subassemblies, and light sources.
  • Hands on characterization and testing of optical components and subassemblies, including lasers.
  • Design and conduct system level tests of standard and modified optical subsystems operating in sequencing instruments.
  • Perform failure modes and effects analyses (DFMEA).
  • Design and execute protocols for highly accelerated life tests (HALT) and highly accelerated stress tests (HAST) of optical components and assemblies.
  • Conduct failure analyses, potentially using outside analytical laboratories (SEM, TEM, surface profiling, etc.)
  • Design, build, maintain, and operate optical test apparatuses such as for
    • Lasers: Power noise, polarization extinction ratio (PER), wavelength spectra, beam pointing, M2, waist position, etc.
    • Lenses, windows, and other components: Wavefront error, transmission spectra, birefringence, etc.
    • Fiber optics: Insertion loss, return loss, PER, mechanical properties, split ratios, etc.
  • Employ advanced analytical and computational skills to interpret and visualize experimental test data.
  • Present findings in highly collaborative intergroup meetings.
  • Develop assembly, alignment, and test instructions and transfer knowhow to the manufacturing team.

All listed tasks and responsibilities are deemed as essential functions to this position; however, business conditions may require reasonable accommodations for additional tasks and responsibilities. 

  • B.S., M.S. or Ph.D. in physics, optical engineering, mechanical engineering, or a related field.
  • Zemax proficiency is a plus
  • Knowledge of optical science should be demonstrated in some of the following areas: physics of lasing; guided light and modes of propagation; free space beam propagation and diffraction limits; design of beam shaping optics; fiber coupling; polarization and birefringence; interference; optical damage mechanisms.
  • Digital signal processing and related mathematics: noise, aliasing, digital and analog filtering techniques, Fourier transforms, autocorrelation.
  • Basic statistics.
  • Design of experiments.
  • Coding skills (Matlab, Python or others) including control of instrumentation, data acquisition, data analysis, and data visualization.
  • Familiarity with SolidWorks is a plus.

The candidate should have experience with many of the following:
  • Design, construction, and control of optical bench layouts including optical components, optomechanics, cameras, photodiodes, electronic amplifiers and filters, and computer control and data acquisition systems.
  • Handling and alignment of delicate, high precision optics.
  • Design for manufacturing
  • Detailed experimental characterization of lasers including power noise, longitudinal mode spectra, and PER.
  • Laser free space beam metrology (waist and M2)
  • Design and execution of HAST/HALT.

All qualified applicants will receive consideration for employment without regard to race, sex, color, religion, national origin, protected veteran status, or on the basis of disability, gender identity, and sexual orientation.

About Our Organization

PacBio is a leading provider of high quality, long-read sequencing platforms.

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