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Job Details

Requisition Number 17-0022
Post Date 1/25/2017
Title Software Engineer
City Tucson
State AZ

The Association of Universities for Research in Astronomy, Inc. (AURA) operates several observatory centers (including the National Optical Astronomy Observatory, the National Solar Observatory, Large Synoptic Survey Telescope (LSST) and the Gemini Observatory) in the United States and Chile under cooperative agreements with the National Science Foundation.

The LSST Project has begun construction of a large ground based observatory. The 8.4-meter LSST will survey the entire visible sky deeply in multiple colors every week with its three-billion pixel digital camera, probing the mysteries of Dark Matter and Dark Energy, and opening a movie-like window on objects that change or move rapidly: exploding supernovae, potentially hazardous near-Earth asteroids, and distant Kuiper Belt Objects.

The LSST Telescope and Site Group (T&S) is looking for an Observatory Control System (OCS) Software Engineer to complete the design, implementation, and verification of software components necessary for the LSST survey mission. This position will need a passion for all things web and a willingness to go the extra mile. Experience designing, building, and supporting applications with an n-tier architecture and a strong understanding of best practices.

This position is located in Tucson, Arizona at LSST Project Office and relocation to Tucson is expected.

Essential Functions: This position will work closely with the T&S Software Manager and with other members of the OCS and TCS (Telescope Control System) software teams.

  • Elicits software requirements, showing traceability to higher-level requirements.
  • Participates in selection of software components, where appropriate.
  • Develops detailed design to match requirements.
  • Implements design of web content and code.
  • Implements other GUIs as appropriate.
  • Builds and deploys application on multiple platforms.
  • At each step, participates in review of element with team.
  • Participates with team in reviews of other components.
  • Provides component development plan inputs and reports progress against plan.
  • Communicates effectively with customers and fellow team members to ensure successful realization of project needs.
  • Bachelor’s Degree in a technical field such as Computer Science or Computer Engineering
  • Linux/Unix experience
  • Java and/or C++ development experience
  • Experience with the following technologies: • Git or Subversion/Trac • XML/XSD experience • NetBeans, Eclipse and/or JBuilder • Perl or Python
  • Graphical User Interface (GUI) development experience
  • 5+ years’ experience designing and delivering scalable full-stack web solutions
  • Experience with web frameworks such as Django or Ruby on Rails
  • Expertise with front-end frameworks like AngularJS
  • Ability to ensure cross-browser and platform compatibility for developed features
  • Experience in algorithms development and data structures
  • Working knowledge of responsive design principles
  • Self-motivated


  • Experience working in an Agile software development team
  • Experience developing in publish subscribe communications mechanism
  • Experience developing software applications in Python

Please list 3 professional references in your application. Please attach a statement of professional interests or cover letter and CV or resume (PDF Files preferred) to your application. Please name any attachments with the following format: 17-0022LastnameDocname. Application documents that are not uploaded as part of the application may be sent to

AURA, as a leader in the astronomical community, is committed to diversity and inclusion. AURA develops and supports programs that advance our organizational commitment to diversity, broaden participation, and encourage the advancement of diversity throughout the astronomical scientific workforce. Learn more at

As a recipient of U.S. Government funding, AURA is considered a government contractor and is subject to Equal Employment Opportunity and Affirmative Action regulations. As an Equal Opportunity and Affirmative Action Employer, AURA does not discriminate based on race, sex, color, age, religion, national origin, sexual orientation, gender identity/gender identity expression, lawful political affiliations, veteran status, disability, and/or any other legally protected status under applicable federal, state, and local equal opportunity laws. The statements below as well as the requests for self-identification are required pursuant to these regulations. We encourage your participation in meeting these federal reporting requirements which are included for protection and to assist us in our recordkeeping and reporting. Your responses are kept strictly confidential.

Preference granted to qualified Native Americans living on or near the Tohono O'odham reservation.

  • Equal Opportunity Employer/Protected Veterans/Individuals with Disabilities.
  • Please view Equal Employment Opportunity Posters provided by OFCCP here.
  • The contractor will not discharge or in any other manner discriminate against employees or applicants because they have inquired about, discussed, or disclosed their own pay or the pay of another employee or applicant. However, employees who have access to the compensation information of other employees or applicants as a part of their essential job functions cannot disclose the pay of other employees or applicants to individuals who do not otherwise have access to compensation information, unless the disclosure is (a) in response to a formal complaint or charge, (b) in furtherance of an investigation, proceeding, hearing, or action, including an investigation conducted by the employer, or (c) consistent with the contractor's legal duty to furnish information. 41 CFR 60-1.35(c)
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