Thread: Research Technician/Engineer

Started: 2019-04-03 14:24:22
Last activity: 2019-04-03 14:24:22
John Collins
2019-04-03 14:24:22
Institution: OBS Instrument Center, Woods Hole Ocenaographic Institution
Open Until: 2019-07-31

The Ocean Bottom Seismometer Instrument Center (OBSIC) at Woods Hole Oceanographic Institution (WHOI) provides seafloor seismographs and at-sea technical support to the U.S. academic community in order to advance knowledge about Earth structure and dynamic processes, such as earthquakes and volcanism.

See more details and apply through WHOI Employment website:

Questions? Please contact Director of OBSIC:
Dr. John Collins <jcollins<at>>

Under the supervision of more senior OBSIC staff, assist in the construction and maintenance of Ocean-Bottom Seismographs (OBS) and related support equipment.
Assist in mobilizing/demobilizing sea-going seismic experiments.
Participate in sea-going experiments.
While at sea, provide support for all aspects of OBSIC operations, including the deployment and recovery of OBS, acoustic navigation of deployed OBS, instrument programming and debriefing, and record keeping.
In port, assist in loading and unloading OBS and related support equipment.

As deemed necessary by supervisor


Positions require a Bachelor’s/Associate’s degree in engineering, physics, earth science or related field OR the equivalent education/experience.
Minimum requirements for the technical-focused position include the ability to troubleshoot, repair, construct, test, and maintain complex mechanical and electronic systems. Must have the ability to use basic machine shop tools such as drill press, bench grinder, band saw, impact wrench, etc. Experience with Windows operating systems and common applications such as Word, Excel and PowerPoint required. Minimum requirements for the science-focused position include experience with Unix/Linux/MacOS operating systems, and knowledge of Matlab/Python or related programming language.
Must be able to work well in a coordinated fashion within a team, both in the lab and at sea.
For more senior positions the candidate must have a demonstrated ability to work independently with minimal direct supervision, both in the lab and at sea.
Must be able to pay attention to detail, and manage individual project priorities, deadlines and deliverables.
Positions will require about 2-4 months at sea annually; typical cruise durations are ~30 days or less.


Constructing complex wiring harnesses
Surface mount and through-hole PCB assembly and rework
Electronic and/or mechanical CAD software
TCP/IP networking and systems management
Knowledge of the C programming language
Seismology and/or seismic instrumentation
Seismic data formats


Physical duties for this position include but are not limited to, ability to lift 25=50 lbs independently, 1-5 times per day; carry 10-25 lbs, 1-5 times per day. Visual abilities to include peripheral, depth perception, and ability to distinguish basic colors. Hearing requirements include the ability to hear and respond to instructions, communicate effectively in loud areas (pier/dock, warehouse). Other physical tasks include occasional prolonged standing/walking; use of hands for basic grasping and manipulation, reaching above and below the shoulders, pushing, pulling, kneeling, bending, twisting, and stooping. Other occupational requirements include talking, traveling, working around others, with others, and independently. Will be exposed to dust or other irritants and electrical/mechanical/power equipment hazards, extended periods at sea, severe weather conditions, and prolonged work hours. Physical duties are subject to change.


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.

WHOI is a member of the Higher Education Recruitment Consortium (HERC). We are sensitive to the issues of dual career candidates and we will work with applicants to address them. Please visit HERC - for more information.

WHOI is an Affirmative Action/Equal Opportunity Employer/Disabled/Veterans/M/F. We encourage Veterans and those with Disabilities to apply. Applications are reviewed confidentially. Applicants that require accommodation in the job application process are encouraged to contact us at (508) 289-2253 or email eeo<at> for assistance.
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