Employment With EAO/JCMT

EAO/JCMT Employment Opportunities


The East Asian Observatory embraces diversity and equal opportunity. We are committed to creating a team that welcomes different backgrounds, perspectives, experience and skills. A diverse team works better, and we commit to making a working environment in which everyone feels empowered.


EAO/JCMT Electronics Instrumentation Technician (Level 1) – ID #220823


JOB SUMMARY: Regular, Full-Time, position with the East Asian Observatory (EAO), located in Hilo, Hawaii. Continuation of employment is dependent upon program/operational needs, satisfactory work performance, availability of funds, and compliance with applicable Federal/State laws.

Works in the Engineering & Technical Services (ETS) Division in support of project work and upkeep of existing analog, digital, and astronomical instrumentation systems on the James Clerk Maxwell Telescope (JCMT). On occasion, may assist the following partner observatory facilities with instrument or equipment servicing and upgrade support: University of Arizona/Infrared Telescope (UA/IRT), Academia Sinica Institute of Astronomy and Astrophysics (ASIAA), the Submillimeter Array (SMA), and the Subaru telescopes. Performs fabrication, troubleshooting, repair, and maintenance of electronic, electrical, and instrumentation systems. Maintains laboratory facility bench stock, spares, tools, and test equipment. Also works with scientific support staff as necessary. Work may be required outside the normal 40-hour work week. This is a progression job. Progression may be possible dependent upon demonstrated abilities and competence, satisfactory work performance, and operational needs.

As a condition of employment, employees will be subject to all applicable EAO policies and procedures. Violation of EAO’s policies and/or procedures or applicable State or Federal laws and/or regulations may lead to disciplinary action (including, but not limited to possible termination of employment, personal fines, civil and/or criminal penalties, etc.).

LEVEL OF INTERACTION: Works in the ETS Division as one (1) of a team responsible for the electronic, electrical, and instrumentation systems of JCMT and UA/IRT. Interacts closely with other members of the ETS team including engineers and technicians from other disciplines, but often needs to work unsupervised once job plans have been agreed. At the senior level, may be responsible for directing the effort of other technicians. Interacts with scientific staff on occasion. Will need to produce some documentation, e.g. of maintenance procedures, for reference by other staff. Work is carried out at the office in Hilo and at the summit of Maunakea at 14,000 feet elevation.


(Percentages will vary depending on progression level and competence)

5-80% 1. Instrument support. Supports preparation, installation, commissioning, and removal of facility and visiting instruments including telescope balancing. Works directly with engineers and/or scientists in the testing, troubleshooting, repair, modification, and minor upgrade of the JCMT and UA/IRT instruments. Performs routine and preventative electronic and cryogenic instrument maintenance including integrity checks, diagnostics, liquid cryogen fills, warm-ups, and cool-downs. Maintains records, documents procedures, and updates existing documentation. Researches and purchases new items and equipment.

5-80% 2. Electronics/Electrical support. Works directly with engineers in the testing, troubleshooting, repair, modification, and minor upgrade of the JCMT and UA/IRT electronic and electrical systems. Performs routine and preventative electronic and electrical maintenance at JCMT, UA/IRT, and the Hilo office. Maintains records, documents procedures, and updates existing documentation. Researches and purchases new items and equipment. Assists with safety related work.

5-20% 3. Project support. Fabricates cables, small units, and wires cabinets including installation and testing, for both new and existing systems. Produces Computer-Aided Design (CAD) drawings and technical documentation. Oversees electrical contract work. Researches and purchases new items and equipment.

5-10% 4. Laboratory maintenance. Responsible for maintaining instrument and/or electronics laboratories in a clean and orderly state. Maintains bench stock, spares, tools, and test equipment. Researches and purchases new items and equipment.

5% 5. Performs other duties as assigned, including snow clearing. Assists with maintenance of telescope optics. May be responsible for training other electronic/electrical technicians on the operation and maintenance of JCMT electronic, electrical, and instrumentation systems.


Education/Training: Associate’s Degree from an accredited community college in Electronics or a formal training program (i.e. apprenticeship program) with demonstrated ability to perform the essential job functions.

Experience: At least two (2) years of experience involving maintenance and servicing of electronic, electrical, and/or astronomical instrumentation systems. Progression job with combination of minimum experience requirements and demonstrated competence for Levels II, and III.

Knowledge: Solid understanding of electrical and analog/digital electronic concepts for maintenance, troubleshooting and repair. Understanding of existing circuit designs and rapidly acquire understanding of JCMT systems. Working knowledge of electronic test equipment.

Abilities/Skills: Able to solder, wire cable connectors, fabricate electronics boards and assemblies, and read electronics schematics. Able to test, troubleshoot, and repair a wide range of electronic circuits to component level. Mechanical aptitude for work with electro-mechanical, cryogenic, and vacuum systems. Good communicator with problem solving skills appropriate to the job. Good Personal Computer (PC) computing skills. Able to work as part of a team.

Must possess a valid driver’s license and maintain throughout the duration of employment. Must be able to drive a 4-wheel drive vehicle with manual transmission (or be able to drive these vehicles following appropriate training). If personal vehicle will be used for business purpose: Must possess proof of personal vehicle insurance and maintain throughout the duration of employment. Must also provide the EAO Human Resources Department with driver’s license information and keep current throughout the duration of employment. Failure to meet this requirement or falsification of documents may result in disciplinary action including and up to termination of employment.

Post Offer/Employment Condition: Must possess the American Red Cross Certification in First Aid/CPR/AED (or be able to obtain and maintain the certificate following the training provided within three (3) months from date of hire and maintain throughout duration of employment).

Physical Requirements: Must be capable of safe manual handling of loads up to seventy (70) pounds assisted.

SECONDARY QUALIFICATIONS: Experience with operations in a telescope or similar environment, direct experience of electronic maintenance work. Broad range of experience/interest covering a number of the following areas: phase lock and servo loop systems, microwave electronics and/or radio frequency (RF), infrared arrays and/or charge-coupled devices (CCDs), vacuum and cryogenic systems, programmable logic controllers (PLC), surface mount technology (SMT) assembly and repair, heating, ventilating, and air conditioning/refrigeration (HVAC/R) systems, producing documentation (e.g. for maintenance and record-keeping purposes), AutoCAD/OrCAD.

INQUIRIES: Dan Bintley (808) 961-3756 or email careers@eaobservatory.org

MINIMUM SALARY: $24.00/per hour

How To Apply: You must submit the following documents to be considered for the position: cover letter, resume, (3) supervisory references (contact details including email address), and a copy of any educational degrees and/or certifications relevant to the position. All submissions must be received by the closing date stated on the job posting via email to careers@eaobservatory.org, fax (808/961-6516) or on location at 660 N. A’ohoku Place, Hilo.

Closing Date: 13 September 2022

EEO/AA Employer



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