NAL is seeking an experienced laboratory test engineer for a full time position in our Hardware Engineering group. The successful candidate will lead laboratory testing and characterization of handheld trackers, navigation devices and portable satellite modems in both simulated and “live-sky” environments. Test programs are mainly aimed at fulfilling project requirements, technology characterization and product certification, and utilize a test-fix-test method whenever possible. The tests will require close collaboration with electrical engineers and embedded software engineers, and to a lesser extent mechanical engineers and project management.
The successful candidate will have experience developing test plans from stated goals and requirements, as well as experience with a variety of instrumentation, sensors and laboratory equipment. It is expected that the test engineer will perform data analysis and assessment of results, together with the generation of test reports.
Typical NAL designs are small handheld devices or stand-alone communication devices that require the electro-mechanical integration of LCD screens, touch panels, GNSS modules, cellular, Bluetooth, Wi-Fi and/or Iridium modem modules, as well as supporting antennas, electronics and high-power-density batteries. NAL’s product lines emphasize high performance combined with low size, weight and power (SWaP).
Responsibilities and Duties
- Develop expertise in the functioning and operation of various NAL trackers, navigation devices and modems.
- Must be able to travel to support tests at customer sites (continental USA) as well as in-house tests at NAL. 2 weeks of outside testing per year are expected.
- Develop test plans for the device under test (DUT); these plans to include consideration of operational modes, functions, required data output, required data input, required firmware loads and software analysis. Most tests goals are categorized as either design verification, product characterization or production functionality.
- Work with embedded software engineers to put required “engineering mode” firmware loads onto the DUT, if required. Work with engineering technicians to put in place the required electro-mechanical equipment for test setups.
- Perform testing of existing NAL products and those under development, per the stated goals and requirements, using available laboratory equipment. Lab testing in support of live-sky field tests will be required.
- Develop automated scripts in order to reduce, analyze and assess integrity and accuracy of data.
- Work with engineering technicians and electrical engineers during the product development process to efficiently test and assess engineering designs.
- Construct graphs and presentations of data that can be used in briefing slides. Create first drafts of presentation slides to be utilized by engineering leaders.
- Troubleshoot hardware issues using common electronics test equipment.
- Characterize performance of new designs; accuracy vs. benchmark, power management and communication performance are of particular interest.
- Verify product concepts through breadboarding, development kits and/or simulation.
- Create and manage bill of materials (BOM) for developed test kits.
- Develop production test plans, and train production personnel to follow test plan in order to assess pass/fail functionality of production units.
- Assist in the maintenance, organization and calibration of laboratory equipment as required. Develop and maintain test procedures and standard operating procedures for various tests
Qualifications and Skills
- BS in Electrical Engineering or similar degree required.
- Self-motivated with excellent ability to organize and prioritize multiple tasks.
- 3-5 years of engineering experience testing electronic equipment.
- Understanding of electrical schematics and engineering assemblies. Experience with the development and execution of design verification test plans.
- Must be familiar with the scientific method and best practices for laboratory testing, data acquisition and data recording.
- Ability to utilize laboratory equipment: Of particular interest are oscilloscopes, signal generators, vector network analyzers, vector signal analyzers, data acquisition modules, spectrum analyzers, programmable power supplies/loads and others.
- The following are preferred and are an advantage:
- Experience with RF systems, transceivers
- Satellite positioning systems
- Experience with embedded systems, especially handheld electronics.
- Experience working with GNSS simulators a plus.
- Ability to program in MatLab, C, Python and/or Labview is required. Experience in multiple languages is an advantage.
- Experience with Microsoft Office is required. Must be able to utilize MS Word, Powerpoint and Excel. Ability with Visio is an advantage.
- Due to the nature of the work and the environment in which it is performed, all applicants must have the ability to obtain a U.S. security clearance
NAL Research Corporation is an Equal Opportunity Employer. NAL Research Corporation offers a generous employee benefits package, including medical, dental, vision, life insurance, accidental death and dismemberment insurance, disability insurance and a 401(k).
Please submit a resume and cover letter and indicate salary expectations.
NAL Research Corporation
Why Work Here?NAL Research Corporation, headquartered in the Northern Virginia metropolitan area, provides advanced Iridium satellite modems and Iridium tracking terminals—from design through integration—for the defense, research and commercial sectors. These products are being used globally in a wide range of applications including assets tracking, search and rescue, remote sensing and command/control of both ground and airborne platforms.
From design through integration into the field, we are a technological leader in Iridium satellite modems & tracking terminals.