SARAO is Hiring an RFI & EMC Engineer

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The South African Radio Astronomy Observatory (SARAO) Is hiring two Radio Frequency Interference and Electromagnetic Compatibility (RFI & EMC) engineers for the Square Kilometre Array Mid Telescope (SKA‐MID) in South Africa. The RFI & EMC Engineer will play a key role in coordinating and managing RFI & EMC matters within the SKA-MID project. This will include developing new management, engineering and broader communication processes for the MID telescope and the implementation of existing SKAO HQ processes.

Furthermore, the successful applicants will promote teamwork between SKAO HQ, SKA‐MID and SARAO in resolving RFI/EMC issues and motivating, coaching and developing people in the team to build functional skills in dealing with RFI & EMC related requirements.

In addition, the engineer will form part of the wider SKAO RFI group, representing the Observatory at national and international meetings and conferences, detailing SKA-MID activities related to RFI & EMC activities. In addition, at the national level, they will contribute, with SARAO, to the RFI site policies definition and implementation.

Key Requirements
Qualification
  • Honours Degree in a relevant engineering or scientific discipline (NQF 8) or equivalent four years’ degree.
Experience
  • Seven years experience in a similar or EMC related role;
  • Wide-ranging knowledge of RFI & EMC issues associated with the diverse equipment;
  • Experience in RF direction-finding methods;
  • Conversant with electromagnetic propagation as applicable to RFI;
  • Conversant with design techniques for EMC;
  • Experience in EMC testing and qualification procedures at system and subsystem levels;
  • Hands-on experience with RFI/EMI test and measurement equipment;
  • Experience with programming languages such as Python, MatLab, etc. (Python is the preferred language in SKAO);
  • Experience in potential interference analyses for radio communication systems; and
  • Experience working with multicultural teams.
Knowledge
  • Knowledge of relevant commercial and military EMC standards;
  • Deep understanding of EMC techniques;
  • Understanding of commissioning, testing, compliance and verification processes used within the RFI/EMC field; and
  • Familiarity with RFI monitoring, survey, measurement and data analysis activities.
Skills/Ability/Competencies
  • Ability to use computers as planning and analysis tools, preferably with experience in the use of currently available RFI/EMC related software;
  • Ability to develop an appreciation of the role of a domain specialist in large scale scientific projects;
  • Ability to adapt to a non-monotonous work post, with a wide range of RFI related activities;
  • Excellent interpersonal skills for dealing with a wide range of people, including the ability to transfer knowledge to other members of the engineering team in the SKA Observatory and SARAO;
  • Flexible team player who is adaptable to change and can work under their initiative; and
  • Ability and willingness to travel nationally and internationally as required.
Application 

To apply for this position, kindly submit a comprehensive CV here. Furthermore, applications should be accompanied by a letter of motivation indicating the applicant’s suitability for the role. Also, the names and contact details of at least three referees should be provided.

For more information about the National Research Foundation (NRF) initiatives and activities, kindly check here.

The NRF offers a challenging career and competitive remuneration package commensurate with the applicants’ qualifications and experience. In addition, the NRF is committed to employment equity and redress. Lastly,  the appointment to the position will be made in line with the NRF Employment Equity Plan. Accordingly, correspondence will be sent to short-listed candidates only.

About SKAO

The Square Kilometre Array (SKA) Telescope is an international effort by more than a dozen countries to build the world’s largest, most advanced radio telescopes in South Africa and Australia. Both South Africa and Australia are co-host members of the SKA Observatory (SKAO), a UK-based intergovernmental organisation responsible for the construction and operation of the SKA telescopes.

The first phase of the SKA will consist of two telescopes:

South Africa will host the mid-frequency telescope (SKA-Mid). SKA-Mid will comprise up to 197 dishes spread along spiral arms spanning 150 km in the Karoo, Northern Cape. The South African Radio Astronomy Observatory (SARAO), a facility of the National Research Foundation, is responsible for managing all radio astronomy initiatives and facilities in South Africa, including the MeerKAT Radio Telescope, a precursor to the SKA telescope.

Australia will host the SKA’s low-frequency telescope (SKA-Low). SKA-Low will comprise up to 131,072 antennas in clusters along spiral arms spanning 65 km at CSIRO’s Murchison Radio-astronomy Observatory (MRO) in  Western Australia.

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