21 days old

Fusion Reactor Systems Computer Programmer

San Diego, California 92121
  • Job Code
  • Job Type
  • Job Status
    Full Time
  • Shift
    1st Shift
  • Jobs Rated

The Princeton Plasma Physics Laboratory is a world-class fusion energy research laboratory dedicated to developing the scientific and technological knowledge base for fusion energy as a safe, economical, and environmentally attractive energy source for the world’s long-term energy requirements. The Laboratory is managed by Princeton University for the U.S. Department of Energy’s Office of Science, which is the largest single supporter of basic research in the physical sciences in the United States and is working to address some of the most pressing challenges of our time. 

This job will be located at the DIII-D National Fusion Facility at General Atomics in San Diego. Fusion is the perfect energy source to produce high power electricity with no environmental impacts and uses deuterium, a 200-million-year supply, from seawater to produce energy. The highly technical team at DIII-D leads the world in its fusion control development focused on taming this 150-million-degree C plasma.

The Plasma Control System (PCS) controls fusion device plasmas around the world. The original version, created at the DIII-D fusion device, is exported to many of the other worldwide fusion devices for the control of plasma. Real time computing along with artificial intelligence and machine learning codes are used to grow the PCS control capabilities.

This Plasma Control System Computer Programmer will create and maintain internal software programs for the DIII-D fusion reactor control. The incumbent candidate has a strong background in software development and programming. He or she will use the Linux operating system and associated hardware.

Fusion Reactor Systems Computer Programmer responsibilities include:

  • Work with the DIII-D Real Time Systems that use real time data to steer the plasma and diagnose the system
  • Code and test programming for in-house software programs
  • Learn and debug code for existing programs such as the PCS System and real time systems
  • Document program codes for users and staff
  • Conduct end-user training upon completion of software
  • Balance multiple projects around algorithm development in disruption analysis, soft landings, ELM suppression, or coil feedback.
  • Respond immediately to tech requests from staff during machine operations (typically 12-18 weeks per year)
  • Collaborate with the team in development, deployment, integration, testing, and maintenance of the scientific algorithms and surrounding infrastructure making up the Plasma Control System (PCS)
  • Troubleshoot system bugs and issues   
  • Work with hardware and low-level drivers



Minimum Requirements:

  • BS in Computer Engineering with minimum 7 years’ experience
  • 1-2 years’ experience python scripts
  • 1-3 years’ experience interfacing MATLAB with C
  • Fluency in C, C++, and Fortran, experience with latest language standards preferred
  • Knowledge of the CentOS and GNU/Linux
  • Fundamental understanding of build systems using plain GNU Make (not autotools or CMake), including compilers (both GCC and Intel)
  • Demonstration of software development quality (provide either public FOSS contributions or a private portfolio) project quality standards
  • Ability to work with others and contribute to a larger team effort across several time zones 
  • Experience working with legacy codes in debugging and modifying large and complex applications.

Preferred Skills:

  • Experience with IDL and the ability to create graphical widgets
  • FPGA and/or GPU programming
  • Familiarity with Google G Suite environment
  • Experience with NoMachine as a daily use platform
  • Knowledge and use of RedHawk and NightStar
  • Experience with Real Time systems

Expected travel for conferences: 1-2 weeks per year

Normal working hours, but flexibility to accommodate lab test times or off-site collaboration (expected during the 2nd and 3rd years)

There may be some nights and weekends required of the incumbent when needed.

Ability to lift up to fifty pounds

Ability to run cables under a raised floor or along a dropped ceiling

Ability to stand for prolonged periods of time (when necessary)

Will frequently sit at a computer for extended periods of time

Princeton University is an Equal Opportunity/Affirmative Action Employer and all qualified applicants will receive consideration for employment without regard to age, race, color, religion, sex, sexual orientation, gender identity or expression, national origin, disability status, protected veteran status, or any other characteristic protected by law. EEO IS THE LAW.

Please be aware that the Department of Energy (DOE) prohibits DOE employees and contractors from participation in certain foreign government talent recruitment programs. All PPPL employees are required to disclose any participation in a foreign government talent recruitment program and may be required to withdraw from such programs to remain employed under the DOE Contract.




  • Government / Civil Service

Jobs Rated Reports for Computer Systems Analyst

Posted: 2020-11-04 Expires: 2020-12-04

The U.S. Department of Energy's Princeton Plasma Physics Laboratory is dedicated to developing fusion as a clean and abundant source of energy and to advancing the frontiers of plasma science. The Laboratory pursues these goals through experiments and computer simulations of the behavior of plasma, the hot electrically charged gas that fuels fusion reactions and has a wide range of practical applications.

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Fusion Reactor Systems Computer Programmer

Princeton Plasma Physics Laboratory
San Diego, California 92121

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Computer Systems Analyst
22nd2019 - Computer Systems Analyst
Overall Rating: 22/199
Median Salary: $88,740

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