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IDEX Senior Optical Systems Engineer in Carlsbad, California

If you’re looking for a special place to build or grow your career, you’ve found it. Whether you’re an experienced professional, a recent college graduate or somewhere in between, IDEX is a place where you can apply your existing skills and learn new ones in an environment where you can make an impact.

With interesting opportunities in engineering, marketing, sales, supply chain, operations, HR, finance, and more across more than 40 diverse businesses ( around the globe, chances are, we have something special for you.

JOB TITLE: Senior Optical Systems Engineer

REPORTING TO: Optical Engineering Manager

LOCATION: Carlsbad, CA


These positions may require lawful access to ITAR/EAR controlled information and employees in this role will need to meet those requirements. Requirements include US Citizenship or US Permanent Resident.

Who is IDEX Health & Science (IH&S)?

As a business unit of IDEX Corporation, IH&S has a long history of driving growth in life sciences and healthcare by embracing innovation and redefining the supplier-customer relationship. The work we do every day allows us to discover key insights and break new ground to create some of the most meaningful technologies that have a lasting impact on companies, industries, and society. One of business segments is called Life Science Optics and we are looking to add more talent to the team.


This is a critical engineering role having both wide ranging technical needs as well as requiring deep subject matter knowledge in the area of illumination modeling. Responsible for optical design, system architecture of complex opto-electro-mechanical systems, specifying sub-systems and components. Works on projects visible to management and aligns project goals with company goals while maintaining strict optical performance parameters. Maintains relationships across departments to better execute projects. Interfaces directly with external customers and leads problem solving efforts and communicates solutions to the customer. Works with a general direction from supervisor. Other functions may be assigned, and management retains the discretion to add or change duties.


  • Mastery of first order optics and aberration theory

  • Skilled in illumination modelling using Zemax (Sequential and Non-Sequential)

  • Ability to model and optimize complex 3D optical systems

  • Experienced and knowledgeable in laser physics and gaussian beam propogation

  • Good understanding of integrated optical systems involving the integration of light sources, imaging optics, precision mechanics, image processing, and other key sub-systems and technologies.

  • Design feasibility experiments for opto-mechanical sub-systems, at times using advanced simulation tools in support of R&D prototypes and production processes.

  • Ability to generate optical systems and components specification from system-level performance requirements.

  • Provide accurate and detailed requirements documentation for procurement and fabrication of optical components. Provide accurate test requirements either by following established protocols or creating new standards to support the design and verification of test fixtures.

  • Interface with opto-mechanical and CAD designers to define tooling, optical mounting, and human interface requirements based on predicted worst-case optical tolerances.

  • Ability to interface with customers to determine their needs, to present options in a manner consistent with IDEX business principles, often offering out-of-the-box solutions beneficial to both parties.

  • Ability to explain optics-related issues to non-optical or non-technical persons.

  • Attention to detail. Demonstrate persistence in identifying the cause of unusual results – good problem solver

  • Ability to work independently toward project goals with general guidance.

  • Supports company values including ethical conduct and high integrity in all actions.

  • Complies with health and safety policies and procedures.

  • Complies with the Clean Room Protocol when in a clean room environment.


  • Ability to operate in a multi-tasking environment and with excellent communication and interpersonal skills.

  • Ability to write technical reports in concise and accurate English, and present the results orally as required.

  • Ability to work with test technicians to develop and debug test procedures.

  • Working knowledge of optical test and evaluation equipment such as MTF benches, interferometers and photometers, and able to specify such equipment.

  • Hands-on laboratory skills for assembly, alignment, calibration, and evaluation of optical systems.

CROSS TRAINED IN THESE DUTIES (Back up required by ISO Certification):

  • Ability to layout mechanical arrangements for optical testing, possibly in CAD.

  • Perform electrical tests, including on cameras and other sensing equipment.


  • Supervisory - none

  • Lead – Technical and/or Project Management dependent upon project.

EQUIPMENT UTILIZED : The equipment described here must be used by an employee to successfully perform the essential functions of this job. Reasonable accommodations may be made to enable individuals with disabilities to perform the essential functions.

  • Computer and various software programs including Zemax

  • Office machines (phone, fax, copier, calculator, telephone)

  • Other machines, equipment and tools, as required, to complete duties and responsibilities listed above.

  • Inspection and test equipment

  • Oscilloscope

  • Microscope

  • Optical detectors

  • Personal protective equipment, as required

  • Clean room attire, as required


The successful candidate must have a BS in a related Engineering discipline, fifth year college or university program certificate and 8+ years’ experience in a directly related field of modern optical lens design and manufacturing; or preferably a Master’s degree and 4+ years relevant experience or a PhD and 2+ years of relevant experience. Direct experience in the specification and testing of optical based integrated systems. Proficient with one or more optical design software packages such as CodeV (preferred), Zemax, ASAP, Trace Pro. Proficiency in Matlab, LabVIEW, Visual Basic or other software languages is required.


Ability to read, analyze, and interpret common scientific and technical journals. Ability to respond to common inquiries or complaints from customers regulatory agencies, or members of the business community. Ability to write speeches and articles for publication that conform to prescribed style and format. Ability to effectively present information to top management and public groups..


Ability to comprehend and apply principles of advanced calculus, modern algebra, and advanced statistical theory. Ability to work with concepts such as limits, rings, quadratic and differential equations, and proofs of theorems.


Ability to apply principles of logical or scientific thinking to a wide range of intellectual and practical problems. Ability to deal with nonverbal symbolism (formulas, scientific equations, graphs, etc.,) in its most difficult phases. Ability to deal with a variety of abstract and concrete variables.


  • Membership in OSA and/or SPIE encouraged


  • Successful design of diffraction limited microscope objectives.

  • Analysis work in non-sequential optics such as lighting design, ghost analysis, and stray light simulation.

  • Experience with 2D and 3D design of optics and/or mechanics with CAD software.

  • Hands on experience with sensors and the accompanying software control and electronic outputs.

  • Experience in the specification or design of motion control systems, such as fast-focus modules.

  • General knowledge of operations, including procurement, planning, manufacturing, test engineering, and quality systems.


  • Results Focused (Non-Managers): Targets and achieves results, prioritizes tasks, overcomes obstacles, accepts accountability.

  • Customer Focus: Builds customer confidence, is committed to increasing customer satisfaction, sets achievable customer expectations, assumes responsibility for solving customer problems, ensures commitments are met, solicits opinions and ideas from customers, responds to internal customers.

  • Adaptability/Flexibility: Adapts to change, is open to new ideas, takes on new responsibilities, handles pressure, adjusts plans to meet changing needs

  • Creativity/Innovation: Generates new ideas, challenges the status quo, takes risks, supports change, encouragesinnovation, solves problems creatively.

  • Interpersonal Skills: Enhances others self esteem in interactions, utilizes empathy to build rapport, asks for help in solving problems, demonstrates good listening skills, asks clarifying questions, stays open to other viewpoints, manages distractions and interruptions, builds strong relationships across departments and divisions, operates within the organization’s formal and informal structures, uses allies to build consensus and create results, is appropriately diplomatic, understands others roles and perspectives, can sell projects and ideas across the organization, is flexible/open-minded, negotiates effectively, solicits performance feedback and handles constructive criticism.

  • Job Knowledge: Understands duties and responsibilities, has necessary job knowledge, has necessary technical skills, understands company mission/values, keeps job knowledge current, is in command of critical issues, demonstrates a sense of urgency in executing duties.

  • Quality: Is attentive to detail and accuracy, is committed to excellence, looks for improvements continuously, monitors quality levels, finds root cause of quality problems using effective problems solving skills, owns/acts on problems.

  • Dependability: Meets commitments, works independently, accepts accountability, handles change, sets personal standards, stays focused under pressure, meets attendance/punctuality requirements.

  • Integrity/Ethics: Deals with others in a straightforward and honest manner, is accountable for actions, maintains confidentiality, supports company values including ethical conduct, treats others fairly and with dignity and respect, maintains good reputation of the self and the organization, acts as a responsible citizen, protects the environment and natural resources.

  • Work Environment/Safety: Promotes mutual respect, keeps workplace clean and safe, supports safety programs.

Are you ready to join a different kind of company where our people, our culture, and our commitments are centered around providing trusted solutions that improve lives around the world?

IDEX is an Equal Opportunity Employer and Affirmative Action Employer. IDEX gives consideration for employment to qualified applicants without regard to race, color, religion, creed, genetic information, sex, sexual orientation, gender identity or expression, marital status, age, national origin, disability, protected veteran status, or any other consideration or protected category made unlawful by federal, state or local laws (Minorities/Females/Protected Veterans/Disabled).

Business Unit: IH&S (Life Science Optics)

Job Segment: HST Health & Science Technologies