Systems Engineer

Job Summary

Science Engineering
Princeton University
Number of Positions Available
Work Arrangement

Job Description


The Princeton Plasma Physics Laboratory (PPPL) is a world-class fusion energy research laboratory managed by Princeton University for the U.S. Department of Energy’s Office of Science. PPPL is dedicated to developing the scientific and technological knowledge base for fusion energy. The Laboratory advances the fields of fusion energy and plasma physics research to develop the scientific understanding and key innovations needed to realize fusion, the processes that power the stars, as an energy source for the world.

The Engineering Directorate at PPPL is a multidisciplinary team focused on developing the engineering designs for, and advancing the state-of-the-art of, magnetic confinement plasma physics research devices around the world. We specialize in diagnostics, high-field magnets, heating sources, plasma facing components, and digital/virtual engineering for nuclear fusion experiments at PPPL and collaborator facilities world-wide. Mechanical (solid mechanics and fluid dynamics), electromagnetic, thermal, and material engineering challenges, and radiation effects are routinely encountered simultaneously in PPPL engineering diagnostics projects. PPPL engineers develop novel solutions to the engineering challenges of fusion and plasma physics and collaborate with the Research team to develop new research directions, core capabilities, and experimental devices.

A proud U.S. Department of Energy National Laboratory managed by Princeton University, Princeton Plasma Physics Laboratory (PPPL) is a longstanding leader in the science and innovation behind the development of fusion energy — a clean, safe, and virtually limitless energy source. With an eye on the future and in response to national priorities, PPPL also has begun a strategic shift from a singular focus on fusion energy to a multi-focus approach that includes microelectronics, quantum information science, and sustainability science. Whether it be through science, engineering, technology or professional services, every team member has an opportunity to make their mark on our world. PPPL aims to attract and support people with a rich variety of backgrounds, interests, experiences, and cultural viewpoints. We are committed to equity, diversity, inclusion and accessibility and believe that each member of our team contributes to our scientific mission in their own unique way. Come join us!


This position is for a Systems Engineer. This role is the application of systems engineering processes and principles to include integration of multidisciplinary engineering best practices across the engineering organization. The successful candidate will contribute to projects across the laboratory to support the engineering teams across all areas of the systems engineering process to include requirement management, interface control, and integration, test, risk management and verification/validation. This will be accomplished by contributing individually to projects and as a member of a team work closely with subject matter experts. The systems engineer will conduct mentoring and informal training to grow technical expertise within the engineering teams ensuring members of the staff are adhering and applying Systems Engineering principles.

Core Duties

The successful candidate will:

  • Apply knowledge and aptitude to apply the principles and practices of systems engineering to include but not limited to requirements management, interface control, Failure Modes, Risk Management, Evaluation and Analysis (FMEA), risk management, verification and validation) and/or integration of multidisciplinary engineering to the creation of training materials and conducting formal relevant training programs.
  • Provide knowledge of the systems engineering lifecycle to apply to the Department of Energy (DOE) lifecycle.
  • Development of work breakdown structures.
  • Assisting engineering staff with requirements derivation.
  • Provide support to conduct trade studies and ensure all design deliverables are considered for specific reviews, i.e., Conceptual Design Review (CDR), Preliminary Design Reviews (PDR), and Final Design Reviews (FDR).
  • Interact with both the Quality Assurance and Environment, Safety, & Health (ES&H) to ensure designs adhere to these processes and requirements.
  • Represent the systems engineering interests when interacting with leadership.
  • Ensure that all PPPL and other required, e.g., ITER system engineering processes are followed.
  • Provide program management cost, schedule, risk management support between the engineering staff and project management support.
  • Provide systems engineering mentoring and training to engineering team, physicists, and project managers, e.g., (Control Account Managers) integration as a core competency.


Education and Experience:



  • Master’s degree in Systems Engineering or Multidisciplinary engineering background experience.
  • Professional experience, at least 10 years, preferably in a scientific or R&D environment.
  • At least three years of experience in a systems engineering role.

Knowledge, Skills and Abilities:

  • Competence in systems thinking, requirements decomposition, verification and validation, program management, and risk management. Familiarity with implementation of complex systems, research, modeling, and simulation. Ability to lead and work within and between engineering teams.
  • Ability to work and make decisions independently with limited supervision.
  • Knowledge of project management techniques.
  • Ability to work with a diverse group of researchers, engineers, and technicians.
  • Knowledge of techniques for mentoring and training staff on Systems Engineering principles.
  • Familiarity with fusion energy, high-radiation, and in-vacuum motion systems, is a plus.
  • Familiarity with Digital Engineering is a plus.

Working Conditions:

  • Primarily on-site work (mostly in office, with some hybrid work optional days).

Princeton University is an Equal Opportunity/Affirmative Action Employer and all qualified applicants will receive consideration for employment without regard to age, race, color, religion, sex, sexual orientation, gender identity or expression, national origin, disability status, protected veteran status, or any other characteristic protected by law. KNOW YOUR RIGHTS

Please be aware that the Department of Energy (DOE) prohibits DOE employees and contractors from participation in certain foreign government talent recruitment programs. All PPPL employees are required to disclose any participation in a foreign government talent recruitment program and may be required to withdraw from such programs to remain employed under the DOE Contract.

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Application Details

Publication Start Date
2023 Sep 02
Application Deadline
2023 Sep 30