Electronics Engineer (AST, Electronic Instrumentation Systems)

Greenbelt, Maryland
Sep 11, 2020
Sep 17, 2020
Engineer, IT, QA Engineer
Full Time


The Engineering and Technology Directorate, Instrument Systems and Technology Division, Detector Systems Branch (Code 5530) is seeking a specialized skilled electronics engineer who will perform engineering, research, development and technology development of equipment and/or systems for detecting, recording, measuring, or controlling physical conditions, phenomena, and environments encountered in aeronautical and aerospace research and development programs.
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  • Device Development to include the design, fabrication, characterization, test, and evaluation of for various types of micro devices, sensors, and detectors for various research and flight programs across the entire TRL range.
  • Develop, test, and evaluate the development of cryogenic detectors, sensors, Micro-Electro Mechanical Systems (MEMS) and electronics systems and ensure their suitability and effectiveness in aerospace applications.
  • Design and draft semiconductor devices utilizing computer automated design software to plan process development layers
  • Conceives, studies, analyzes, designs, tests, validates and calibrates equipment and/or systems for detecting, recording, measuring, or controlling physical conductions.
  • Test devices using Adiabatic Demagnetization Refrigerator to determine transition temperatures of cryogenic low noise detectors.
  • Analyze and study performance requirements against an array of diverse considerations, such as safety and human factors engineering; technical risks; functionality; reliability; failure analysis; quality assurance; maintainability; affordability.

Travel Required

Occasional travel - Travel may be required for training or other work-related duties

Supervisory status

Promotion Potential


Conditions of Employment

  • This position is open to U.S. citizens, nationals or those who owe allegiance to the U.S.
  • A one-year trial period may be required.
  • Position subject to pre-employment background investigation


In addition to meeting the Basic Education Requirements, applicants must have one year of specialized experience equivalent to the next lower grade, which has equipped you with the particular competencies needed to successfully perform the duties of the position described above.

To qualify at the GS-7 level: In addition to meeting the basic education requirement.

(A) You must have one year of specialized experience equivalent to the next lower grade (GS-05), which has equipped you with the particular competencies needed to successfully perform the duties of the position described above. Specialized experience includes assisting in in development of semiconductor, MEMS and or low temperature sensors; experience with semiconductor and superconducting sensor process and fabrication techniques in a cleanroom environment; experience with low temperature superconducting detector devices including transition edge sensor (TES) bolometers and their methods of manufacture and experience with cryogenic testing, and micro-machining device metrology such as optical microscopy, scanning electron microscopy, atomic force microscopy, and profilometry.


Completed 1 full academic year of graduate study in an appropriate field.


A combination of experience and graduate study in an appropriate field.

Applicants may also qualify at the GS-7 level by meeting one of the Special Provisions:

a. Are in the upper third of their class, based on completed college work at the time of filing an application.

b. Have an average of 2.90 or better on a 4.0 scale for either all completed college work at the time of hire offer or all college courses completed during the last 2 years of the undergraduate curriculum.

c. Achieved a grade average of B+ (3.5 on a 4.0 scale) or better in the major field of study where such field is fully qualifying. This is either the average of all completed college work in the major field of study at the time of hire offer or the average of all college courses completed in the major field of study during the last 2 years of the undergraduate curriculum.

d. Elected to membership in one of the national honorary scholastic societies meeting the minimum requirements of the Association of College Honor Societies (other than freshman honor societies). These honor societies are listed at ACHS

e. Completed 12 months of student trainee experience that includes one work period equivalent to the GS-5. OR At least 15 months of appropriate student trainee experience which includes one work period equivalent to the GS-4 level. One work period is 2 months or 320 hours.

f. Successfully completed a 5-year program of study, or at least 160 semester hours, leading to a bachelor's degree.

g. Have a professional engineering degree, and up to 12 months of experience gained as a technician or technologist equivalent to the GS-5 or higher level.

h. Successfully completed all requirements for two bachelor's degrees, one in an appropriate field of science or engineering.

i. Have six months of directly related/specialized experience or training, including 3 months gained after the junior year of college. This experience may have been obtained on a part-time or intermittent basis and may have been paid or unpaid.

j. Received honors or elective positions indicating superior leadership outside of the applicant's academic setting. Additionally, the applicant's academic standing must have been in the upper half of the graduating class.

k. Have pattern of completing courses that include unusual preparatory value or direct relation to the particular aerospace specialty for which they are being considered.

l. Have creative research aptitude or special talent for NASA scientific or engineering work. This must be shown by evidence obtained and documented by NASA in certifications from college professors or officials, or standardized questionnaires, or similar techniques.

Your resume must include a clear and detailed narrative description, in your own words, of how you meet the required specialized experience. Experience statements copied from a position description, vacancy announcement or other reference material constitutes plagiarism and may result in disqualification and losing consideration for the job.

Please spell out all acronyms.


Basic Education Requirement: A bachelor's degree from an accredited college or university with major study in Aeronautical Engineering, Aeronautics, Aerospace Engineering, Architecture, Astronautical Engineering, Astronautics, Astronomy, Astrophysics, Biomedical Engineering, Ceramic Engineering, Ceramics, Chemical Engineering, Chemistry, Civil Engineering, Computer Engineering, Computer Science*, Life Science, Earth and Planetary Science, Electrical Engineering, Electronics Engineering, Geology, Geophysics, Industrial
Engineering, Materials Engineering, Materials Science, Mathematics (Pure or Applied), Applied Mechanics,
Engineering Mechanics, Mechanical Engineering, Metallurgical Engineering, Metallurgy, Meteorology, Nuclear Engineering, Nuclear Engineering Physics, Oceanography, Optical Engineering, Physics, Applied Physics, Engineering Physics, Space Science, Structural Engineering, Welding Engineering or other appropriate physical science or engineering field.

If qualifying based undergraduate or graduate education alone. Other majors will qualify if the major includes or is supplemented as follows: supplemented by two courses in solid state physics, materials, optics, statics and dynamics, electricity and electronics, electron optics, kinetic theory of gases, electromagnetic propagation or radiation, semiconductors, vibration, high vacuum theory, information theory or heat transfer.

Degrees in engineering technology are not considered to be qualifying for this position.

*Note: Curriculum must include 30 semester hours of course work in a combination of mathematics, statistics and computer science that provided in-depth knowledge of the following: (1) theoretical foundations and practical applications of computer science, including digital computer system architecture and system software organization, the representation and transformation of information structures and the theoretical models for such representations and transformations; and (2) essential mathematical and statistical techniques. Of the 30 semester hours, 15 must be in any combination of statistics and mathematics which includes differential and integral calculus.

U.S. Engineering degrees must have been awarded from a college or university school of engineering with at least one curriculum accredited by the Engineering Accreditation Commission (EAC) of the Accreditation Board for Engineering and Technology (ABET). To find out if a degree meets this requirement, go to http://www.abet.org.

Foreign Engineering degrees must be recognized by a Mutual Recognition Agreement (MRA), often known as accords These are non-governmental agreements among organizations that accredit academic degree programs. MRAs recognize the substantial equivalence of mature accreditation systems and programs
accredited by signatory organizations within their jurisdictions. For a listing of Signatories, please visit,

Science and other related degrees must have been awarded from colleges or universities that are accredited by recognized accrediting organizations. For a list of schools that meet this criteria, go to http://ope.ed.gov/accreditation/.

All degrees must have been received in the year of, or any year subsequent to the original date of accreditation.

Official transcripts will be required at the time of selection to verify that you meet the educational requirement or substitution

Additional information

This position is announced under Direct Hire authority. Recruitment for this position will follow guidelines
established by the Office of Personnel Management for use of Direct Hire authority.

If you have special priority selection rights under the Agency Career Transition Assistance Program (CTAP)
or the Interagency Career Transition Assistance Program (ICTAP), you must:
Indicate your eligibility when applying for a position. The USAJOBS resume asks you to identify your
ICTAP eligibility; the NASA Supplemental Information asks you to identify your CTAP eligibility.

Be well qualified for this position to receive consideration. See 'How You Will Be Evaluated' for NASA's
definition of well qualified.

Be prepared to submit proof that you meet the requirements for CTAP/ICTAP if you are selected for the
position. This includes copies of your agency notice, most recent Performance Rating and most recent
Notification of Personnel Action (SF-50) noting current position, grade level, and duty location.

As identical vacancies are identified, additional selections may be made.

You must meet qualifications requirements by the closing date of this announcement.

Identification of promotion potential in this position does not constitute a commitment or an obligation on the part of management to promote the employee. Promotion will depend upon administrative approval and the continuing need for an actual assignment and performance of higher level duties.

This appointment may be extended beyond the initial appointment date, for a period not to exceed a total of
six years.

Current Federal civilian employees may apply for this position. If selected, a break in service of at least 4
calendar days may be required prior to appointment to this position.

How You Will Be Evaluated

You will be evaluated for this job based on how well you meet the qualifications above.

This position is announced under Direct Hire authority. A Human Resources Specialist will review your resume to determine if you meet the qualifications and eligibility requirements as listed in 'Requirements'.

CTAP and ICTAP candidates will be assessed using NASA STARS, an automated system that matches the competencies extracted from your resume to the competencies identified by the selecting official for the position. Based on the competencies you match, you are placed in one of three categories identified as 90, 80, or 70 point quality categories, which are defined as:

90 pt. Category - Tentatively meets (until subsequent confirmation upon referral) the basic qualification requirements identified in the vacancy announcement and has experience in the same or similar job that has demonstrated superior proficiency in the primary requirements of the position.

80 pt. Category - Tentatively meets (until subsequent confirmation upon referral) the basic qualification requirements identified in the vacancy announcement and demonstrates satisfactory proficiency in the primary requirements of the position.

70 pt. Category - Fails to meet criteria described in the 80 pt. category.

For the purpose of the CTAP and ICTAP, candidates rated in the top quality (90 pt.) category are considered well-qualified.

Background checks and security clearance

Security clearance
Not Required

Drug test required

Required Documents

NASA's application process has been specifically developed to ensure that we only ask you for the information we absolutely need to evaluate your qualifications and eligibility. In order to apply for this position, you only need to submit your resume and answer the screening questions and supplemental information. No additional documentation is accepted at the time of application. (For example you need not submit narrative 'KSA' statements; they are not required and will not be evaluated.) In this way we allow you to focus on preparing a resume that best describes your background and abilities. For assistance in preparing your resume, consult the Applicant Guide . Nothing further is required until requested by the Human Resources Office. At that point, we may ask you to submit documentation to support statements made in your resume. For example, we may ask you to provide academic transcripts or proof of Federal employment status. If you fail to provide the required documents within the stated time period, we may withdraw a job offer and/or remove you from further consideration.

If you are relying on your education to meet qualification requirements:

Education must be accredited by an accrediting institution recognized by the U.S. Department of Education in order for it to be credited towards qualifications. Therefore, provide only the attendance and/or degrees from schools accredited by accrediting institutions recognized by the U.S. Department of Education .

Failure to provide all of the required information as stated in this vacancy announcement may result in an ineligible rating or may affect the overall rating.

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