Ocean Career: WHOI Autonomous Instrument Technician / Eng. Asst. II or III

Woods Hole Oceanographic Institution (WHOI) is currently searching for an Engineer Technician to join the Physical Oceanography Department. This is a regular, full-time, non-exempt position, and is eligible for benefits.

Job Summary:

The Physical Oceanography Department is searching for an autonomous instrument technician to contribute on ocean observing efforts using underwater gliders and profiling floats. This is a regular full-time position and is eligible for benefits. The internal working title for this position is Engineering Assistant II or Engineering Assistant III. The final level of the position will be determined commensurate with the selected candidate’s level of education and experience. The position will involve all aspects of autonomous underwater glider and profiling float operations. This will include in lab testing and assembly, domestic and international travel for deployments and recoveries, and possibly piloting and/or data processing.

Essential Functions:

  • Under supervision, will perform refurbishment of underwater gliders between missions, including battery replacement, ballasting, and sensor calibration
  • Under supervision, inspect and prepare profiling floats for deployment at sea
  • Shipping of gliders, floats, and related equipment to/from launch and recovery locations globally
  • In-field preparation of gliders and floats prior to launch
  • Assisting with launch and recovery of gliders at sea

Non-Essential Functions:

  • Assist with processing and archiving of data from gliders
  • Assist with maintenance of servers for handling data from deployed vehicles
  • Perform other related duties as deemed necessary by supervisor

Education Desired:

High school or equivalent plus three years’ mechanical or electronics experience, or technical school training plus one year related experience, or one to two years’ progress toward an engineering or related degree for Eng. Asst. II. Additional experience and/or education for Eng. Asst. III.

Previous Experience Desired:

The ideal applicant will have experience with detailed assemblies as well as some hands-on experience with electronic hardware. Basic computer experience is required; experience operating servers is a plus. This position requires the ability work independently with some instruction. Examples of activities include assisting with glider assembly and deployment in a foreign country and following an outlined procedure for assembling a glider and documenting the results and important data. The ability to work well in adverse conditions (i.e., weather, etc.) is also desired.

Physical Requirements

Physical duties for this position include, but are not limited to, lifting up to 50 lbs independently. Occasional prolonged standing, manual dexterity and mobility, use of hands for detailed manipulation. Physical duties are subject to change. This position will require occasionally working in dirty and dusty environments. Working hours may sometimes exceed 8 hours a day, and rarely 12 hours per day. Travel will also be necessary, including internationally, as will be time at sea. There is the possibility of needing to work in bad weather. This job will require travel and sea time of up to 2 months per year.

Sea Duty

May work at least 8 hours per day and, at times in excess of 12 hours per day, 7 days per week. Sleep and work hours can deviate from those on land. May be expected to work on watch schedule (such as 8 hours on and 8 hours off or 12 hours on and 8 hours off) for all or part of a cruise or to work as hours are needed to accomplish the planned work. May need to travel during holidays and for long distances to and from foreign ports. May experience rudimentary living and working conditions, with shared and basic living quarters and laboratories. May experience bad or extreme weather conditions, including heavy seas, winter weather or hot, tropical weather. Work on deck may occur in both hot and cold conditions around the clock. Sea conditions will lead to active ship motion. Should be able to climb steep and vertical ladders and able to enter and exit compartments through hatches, doors, and sills. Should be able to carry heavy gear and participate in the loading and unloading of the ship as well as in the activities on deck and in the labs during the cruise. Shipboard environment may include: confined areas, shared sleeping quarters (berths) and bathroom facilities, small and basic berthing, fixed meal times and basic menus. Modest levels of heating, cooling, ventilation, and illumination, limited or no email and internet access and limited off-duty and recreational facilities (library, lounge, movies). May be exposed to potential allergens and irritants, including paint fumes. May experience constant and intermittent loud noises, and slippery and uneven surfaces.

Learn more about this opportunity and how to apply.

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