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Control Systems Digital Hardware Engineer

Date: May 4, 2022

Location: Oak Ridge, TN, US, 37830

Company: Oak Ridge National Laboratory

Requisition Id 7494 


Oak Ridge National Laboratory is the largest US Department of Energy science and energy laboratory, conducting basic and applied research to deliver transformative solutions to compelling problems in energy and security.


We are seeking a Control Systems Software Engineer who will support the Controls Integration Group in the Research Accelerator Division (RAD), Neutron Sciences Directorate (NScD) at Oak Ridge National Laboratory (ORNL) who will focus on SNS control system infrastructure and tools.


The group is responsible for maintaining and improving fully integrated control system for SNS accelerator to deliver safe, high reliability beam to the target. Typical systems are based on PLC, VME or MicroTCA hardware integrated using the Experimental Physics and Industrial Control Systems (EPICS).


This position reports to Controls Integration group leader. The group is currently focusing on modernizing the control system environment and systems. Ongoing upgrade projects are replacing VME solutions with custom MicroTCA applications, upgrading applications towards EPICS7 and PVAccess protocol, and improving control room operators experience with latest software tools. The position will support this ongoing modernization efforts by developing FPGA digital designs based on MicroTCA platform for applications like fast-feedback control loops, distributed time synchronization, low latency fault protection, ADC and DAC applications.


Major Duties/Responsibilities: 

  • Design digital FPGA solutions for the Proton Power Upgrade project and continuous modernization efforts to migrate from VME to MicroTCA platform
  • Maintain and improve 2 distributed systems critical for SNS operations: Machine Protection System and Timing System
  • Design and maintain generic VHDL building blocks for supporting custom FPGA applications on MicroTCA platform
  • Actively collaborate with peers at the SNS and other large experimental physics facilities to share and leverage community developed solutions
  • Working as part of a multi-discipline group, contribute towards control system architecture design and standards
  • Present SNS custom projects at professional collaborations, like conferences and workshops
  • Perform work in accordance with SNS work control procedures and safety guidelines
  • This position operates during typical daytime office hours, but some off-hours and weekend support is required to support the 24/7 operational needs of the SNS
  • Ensure compliance with Environment, Safety and Health (ES&H) and QA requirements
  • As a member of the ORNL scientific community, you will be expected to commit to ORNL's Research Code of Conduct. Our full code of conduct, and a statement by the Lab Director's office can be found here:


Basic Qualifications:

  • A Bachelors Degree in Engineering, Science, Physics, or a related field and 5 years of applicable experience
  • Demonstrated technical expertise which includes one or more of the following: digital hardware designs, FPGA firmware development, highly distributed systems, time synchronization systems, signal processing algorithms
  • Experience with one or more of the following FPGA development tools: Xilinx Vivado, VHDL, Verilog
  • Proficiency with hardware development tools and practices, such as version control, issue tracking, documentation


Preferred Qualifications:

  • A Masters Degree in Electrical Engineering and 5 years of applicable experience
  • Experience with MicroTCA or AdvancedTCA platforms
  • Familiarity with PCIe bus and protocols
  • Experience with one or more of the following data processing tools: Simulink, Matlab, LabView, Python.
  • Demonstrated presentation skills
  • Work experience in experimental physics facility
  • Excellent written and oral communication skills
  • Motivated self-starter with the ability to work independently and to participate creatively in collaborative teams across the laboratory 
  • Ability to function well in a fast-paced research environment, set priorities to accomplish multiple tasks within deadlines, and adapt to ever changing needs

Moving can be overwhelming and expensive. UT-Battelle offers a generous relocation package to ease the transition process. Domestic and international relocation assistance is available for certain positions. If invited to interview, be sure to ask your Recruiter (Talent Acquisition Partner) for details. 
For more information about our benefits, working here, and living here, visit the “About” tab at 


This position will remain open for a minimum of 5 days after which it will close when a qualified candidate is identified and/or hired.

We accept Word (.doc, .docx), Adobe (unsecured .pdf), Rich Text Format (.rtf), and HTML (.htm, .html) up to 5MB in size. Resumes from third party vendors will not be accepted; these resumes will be deleted and the candidates submitted will not be considered for employment.

If you have trouble applying for a position, please email

ORNL is an equal opportunity employer. All qualified applicants, including individuals with disabilities and protected veterans, are encouraged to apply.  UT-Battelle is an E-Verify employer.

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