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RF Electronics Engineer

Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory has a vacancy for a RF Electronics Engineer

  • Closing soon
  • Closing date: 16 Jul 2021
  • United States | Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory
  • Date posted: 16 Jun 2021
  • Job type: Research facilities
  • Disciplines: Accelerators, neutron & light sources  | Engineering & instrumentation

Lawrence Berkeley National Lab’s (LBNL, Engineering Division ( has an opening for an RF Electronics Engineer to join the team.

In this exciting role, you will support the Advanced Light Source (ALS, accelerator complex, in a variety of engineering tasks to include developmental work, characterization measurements, design and develop subsystems and conduct repairs in support of the RF systems currently installed and perform reconfiguration and design work of planned system upgrades. This involves design using ECAD tools and evaluation of designs using circuit simulation, work on low power RF systems including low-noise oscillators, amplitude and phase control loops, pulsed megawatt klystrons and tens to hundred kilowatt class CW tetrodes, inductive output tubes (IOT), klystrons and solid state amplifiers in the several hundred megahertz to multiple gigahertz frequency ranges.

This position will be hired at a level commensurate with the business needs; and skills, knowledge, and abilities of the successful candidate.

What you will do

  • Support the development of state-of-the-art electronic instrumentation including FPGA or ASIC/SOC based data acquisition/control systems for RF amplitude and phase control of high powered RF pulsed and CW solid state and tube amplifiers.
  • Execute detailed electronics circuit design by creating schematics, PCB layouts, simulations and all documentation required for fabrication. Plan and execute verification testing and diagnostics.
  • Support the ALS RF systems. Support requires the upgrade, repair, and maintenance of the following systems:
    – Low phase noise, 500 MHz Master Oscillator, and signal distribution system including RF/Optical Transceivers.
    – Low Power RF Controllers consisting of analog and digital based (FPGA) phase and amplitude control loops.
    – Electron Gun System, a thermionic gun that is pulsed at 125 MHz and operates at an accelerating potential of 120 kV DC.
    – Sub-Harmonic Buncher amplifier systems operating at 125 & 500 MHz in pulse mode at 20 kW.
    – 24 MW pulsed S-Band Pulsed Modulators delivering power to the 3 GHz Linac accelerating structures.
    – 80 kW CW, 500 MHz IOT based Booster Ring RF amplifier system.
    – 65 kW CW, 500 MHz Klystron based Cavity Teststand amplifier system.
    – 300 kW CW, 500 MHz Klystron based Storage Ring RF system.
    – Solid-state RF amplifiers at 125 MHz, 500 MHz & 3 GHz.
    – HVDC Power Supply systems with 208 VAC, 480 VAC and 4160 VAC input, up to 56 kV DC output and 800 kW average power.
    – Hi-speed amplifier protection systems; Thyratron crowbar and Insulated Gate Bipolar Transistor (IGBT) disconnect switch.
    – Normal conducting, Ultra High Vacuum (UHV) high-Q resonant RF cavities at 125, 500 MHz & 1.5 & 3.0 GHz.
    – Coaxial, WR-284, WR-650 and WR-1800 waveguide RF transmission line systems.
    – Higher Order Mode (HOM) Damping systems.
    – Temperature Controlled water cooling systems.
    – Multi-megahertz pulsed Cam-Shaft beam kicker system.
    – PLC & EPICS based controls, ModBus TCP protocol, IEC 61131 Structured Text programming.
  • Work collaboratively with a broad range of scientists and engineers both from LBNL and from other institutions to provide recommendations, requirements, and specifications, and implement solutions in your area of expertise.
  • Support preparation of new proposals, from the development of technical concepts to the preparation of budgets and schedules.
  • Document ongoing and completed work and present it at conferences and workshops. Publish in relevant journals.
  • Help coordinate electronic and mechanical resources needed to complete a task or project.
  • Improve documentation, baseline data, and operating and maintenance procedures.
  • Adhere to the Berkeley Lab’s EH&S policies and maintain all required related training up to date.

Additional responsibilities as needed

  • Apply project management principles for the successful completion of projects.
  • Have sufficient general electronics experience to know how to analyze results and propose new novel systems and design upgrades.
  • Work in complex user facilities.
  • Provide guidance to technical staff.

What is required

  • Minimum of 5 years of related engineering experience with a Bachelor’s degree; or 3 years related experience and a Master’s degree; or equivalent work experience
  • Experience in three or more of the five segments of RF Engineering:
    – the design, construction, implementation, operation, and maintenance of systems involving pulsed megawatt klystrons and hundred kilowatt class CW klystrons in the several hundred megahertz to multiple gigahertz frequency ranges including associated power supplies and modulators.
  • Experience in high-speed, low-noise mixed signal circuit design techniques involving: digital, analog, and RF electronics design principles including power/thermal management. Examples include FPGAs, ASICs, and SOCs with ADCs and data acquisition and control systems instrumentation.
  • Have working knowledge of feedback control systems and control algorithms/techniques.
  • Experience with E-CAD tools: schematic capture, layout, simulation, and design for manufacture.
  • Demonstrate knowledge and experience with RF and microwave electronic instrumentation such as vector network analyzers, spectrum/signal analyzers, signal generators, high speed oscilloscopes, and RF power meters.
  • Demonstrate strong troubleshooting and diagnostic skills in independently resolving most RF system design and operation issues.
  • Excellent oral and written communication skills.
  • Ability to work effectively in a cross functional engineering and scientific research team environment.

Desired qualifications

  • Ph.D. and/or Master’s degree in Electrical Engineering or related field.
  • 5+ years of experience working in a research and development environment.
  • Experience in Field Programmable Gate Array (FPGA) firmware development using VHDL and Verilog.
  • Working knowledge of DSP design technique and embedded design system using FPGA with Hard or Softcore CPUs.
  • Demonstrated ability to enhance capabilities to a complex user facility, while minimizing operational impact. Examples include upgrading tube based RF amplifiers with solid state RF amplifiers and modernizing analog based low level RF front ends with high speed mixed signal FPGA or ASIC/SOC based systems.
  • Experience using Project Data Management (PDM) tools such as Windchill, AutoEDMS, etc.
  • Demonstrate ability to support the estimation of manpower, time, and expense for the completion of projects.
  • Knowledge of beam interaction with accelerating structures and UHV materials and assembly techniques.
  • Experience in 3-D finite element method or equivalent modeling of electromagnetic fields (both time and frequency domain) and thermal heat transfer in accelerating structures. Experience with 3D structure simulation tools such as Ansys HFSS or CST Studio Suite as well as analog and RF circuit simulation tools such as PSPICE and Keysight ADS.


  • This is a full time, 2 years, term appointment with the possibility of extension or conversion to Career appointment based upon satisfactory job performance, continuing availability of funds and ongoing operational needs.This position may be subject to a background check. Any convictions will be evaluated to determine if they directly relate to the responsibilities and requirements of the position. Having a conviction history will not automatically disqualify an applicant from being considered for employment.
  • Berkeley Lab is committed to Inclusion, Diversity, Equity and Accountability (IDEA) and strives to hire individuals from different backgrounds, experiences, and perspectives who share these same values and commitments.
  • Work will be primarily performed at Lawrence Berkeley National Lab, 1 Cyclotron Road, Berkeley, CA.

How to apply

Apply directly online at and follow the on-line instructions to complete the application process.

Equal Employment Opportunity: Berkeley Lab is an Equal Opportunity/Affirmative Action Employer. All qualified applicants will receive consideration for employment without regard to race, color, religion, sex, sexual orientation, gender identity, national origin, disability, age, or protected veteran status. Berkeley Lab is in compliance with the Pay Transparency Nondiscrimination Provision under 41 CFR 60-1.4. Click here ( to view the poster and supplement: “Equal Employment Opportunity is the Law.”


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