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Principal Optical Engineer

Nautilus Biotechnology, San Carlos, CA, United States
Employer Description

At Nautilus, we have a big and important mission: improve the health of millions by unleashing the potential of the proteome to accelerate drug development and enable a new world of precision and personalized medicine. We are developing a single-molecule protein analysis platform of unprecedented sensitivity, scale, and ease of use that we believe will democratize access to the proteome – one of the most dynamic and valuable sources of biological insight. To accomplish this, we are pursuing deep, hard science with an entrepreneurial mindset and creating a world-class team of builders, innovators, and dreamers across a wide range of disciplines.

Job Description
We are looking for a Principal Optical Engineer to join our growing team.  This is an exciting role that will collaborate with a cross-functional team of scientists and engineers to develop and commercialize the world’s first single molecule protein analysis instrument.
  • In close collaboration with the Opto-Mechanical Engineer, designs the custom optics for single-molecule fluorescence detection imaging systems
  • Conceptualizes how advances can improve performance, efficiency, reliability, and cost; drives next generation designs to realize these gains; for example:
    • Resolving higher density features, scanning larger areas, or scanning at higher speeds may enable more accurate detection, higher throughput, or lower cost
    • Designs that achieve higher tolerances with less adjustments may be easier to assemble, resulting in lower costs and more consistent, uniform performance
  • Designs for modularity, reliability, low-cost, manufacturability, shipping, and serviceability
  • Drives and is responsible for system and subsystem designs that meet requirements on an ambitious schedule, through all phases of development and commercialization
  • Supports design choices with ray trace modeling and tolerance analyses
  • Works with suppliers to define, specify, select, qualify, and improve custom and off-the-shelf components (e.g., lasers, high NA microscope objectives, lenses, filters, coatings, and cameras)
  • Identifies simple solutions to subtle, challenging, and complex problems
  • Assembles/tests prototypes and evaluates new test/process equipment and tools
  • Designs, executes, analyzes, and documents experiments to evaluate optical characteristics (e.g., image quality (MTF), resolution, focus, signal intensity, and uniformity) to understand how they may be affected by other factors (e.g., alignment tolerances, temperature, and vibration)
  • Collaborates with scientists, fluidics engineers, and others in testing the assay to understand how the chemistry, molecular biology, fluidics, and hardware interact with and affect the optics
  • Provides documentation and training for the transfer of design, assembly, alignment, and troubleshooting to Manufacturing and Service
  • Identifies, tracks, and isolates root cause of issues and implements permanent corrective actions
Job Requirements
  • BS in optical engineering or equivalent
  • 8-10+ years of relevant experience with the above responsibilities
  • Experienced in the optical design of successfully commercialized products employing rapid, high-resolution fluorescence microscopy of large areas
  • An advanced degree and a demonstrated understanding of Optical Physics and a first-principles-based approach to problem solving is preferred
  • Proficient with optical design software such as Code V, LightTools, or Zemax
  • Experience collaborating with opto-mechanical engineers (e.g., materials and component selection, custom mounting and alignment designs, optical tolerancing, ray tracing analysis)
  • Experience transferring new designs and processes to manufacturing
  • Experience with optical system assembly methods and materials
  • Familiarity with tools and techniques used to evaluate optical systems’ characteristics, including resolution, distortion, and field curvature
  • Proficient with SolidWorks or equivalent 3D CAD software is preferred
  • Analytical expertise using statistical tools/modeling
  • Experience with programming/scripting in Python and LabView is a plus
  • Familiarity with molecular biology, fluidics, and mechatronics is preferred
  • Familiarity with designing systems to meet UL or ETL safety and CE standards is a plus
  • Experience designing medical devices within ISO 13485 compliant QMS systems is a plus
  • Works independently, self-driven, and skilled at effective, proactive communication
  • Enthusiastic, dedicated, engaging, and persuasive

Nautilus Team Culture

  • We are curious go-getters: this is a team of life-long learners who aren’t afraid to tackle the big challenges and we embrace the journey
  • We are detail oriented: we do great science by working smart & with diligence where we learn from our trials and mistakes
  • We are easy to work with: we want our workplace to be one where everyone can share their perspective and be treated with respect and kindness
02 August 2022
01 September 2022
Bachelor's Degree
Biomedical, Medical Imaging, Health Care (Biophotonics)
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