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28 days ago
Diamond Light Source
Salary: £33,963 to £39,955 per annum (Discretionary range
Location: Didcot
Job type: Permanent
Sector: Software Engineering
Category: Software Jobs
An exciting opportunity to join our data acquisition team and lead in the development of bespoke software.

About Us

Diamond Light Source is the UK’s national synchrotron science facility. By accelerating electrons to near light-speed, Diamond generates brilliant beams of light from infra-red to X-rays which are used for academic and industry research and development across a range of scientific disciplines. Diamond is one of the most advanced scientific facilities in the world, and its pioneering capabilities and talented staff are helping to keep the UK at the forefront of scientific research.

Diamond offers an exceptional benefits package to support staff in achieving a positive work/life balance. This includes 25 days annual leave plus 5 days of company holidays, along with flexible working hours and an excellent pension scheme. Staff also have access to a range of amenities on site including a nursery, cafes, a restaurant and sports and leisure facilities.

About the Role

We now have an opportunity for a Software Engineer within the Diamond Data Acquisition (DAQ) group to support and develop Generic Data Acquisition (GDA) software for experiments. These experiments use electrons and X-rays to image samples under different experimental conditions and are performed on experimental facilities (beamlines) which are part of Diamond’s Imaging & Microscopy (I&M) Science Group. The imaging of sample properties such as elemental composition, density, and structure in minute detail lends itself to a wide range of scientific areas from chemistry and catalysis to environmental science, materials science, biology, medicine, and cultural heritage.

Our DAQ group develops software to interface with and control the hardware which allows experiments to be performed and monitored, as well as guiding the end user to tools for data reduction and analysis. The group works closely with scientists, motion, and controls engineers to continuously develop and improve software solutions for scientific data acquisition and on-the-fly monitoring and data analysis. Typical experiments will generate tens of terabytes of data per day.

Experimental data is acquired with our open-source software package, GDA, which is responsible for managing and executing experiments, capture and storage of experimental data, and real-time visualisation of collected data. GDA is a client-server application written in Java, making use of the Eclipse RCP framework. The GDA server communicates with beamline hardware via EPICS to provide a control, monitor capability, and deliver high-level experimental functions, providing both a GUI and a Python scripting capability for users to control experiments locally. The I&S experimental setups at Diamond are becoming highly automated, enabling experiments to be planned and executed remotely. This provides an exciting opportunity to lead in the development of bespoke software to make experiments autonomous.

As a Software Engineer your responsibilities will include interacting with scientists to translate their specifications for scientific capabilities into software requirements, and liaising with controls and motions engineers to put these requirements into action.

About You

You will be qualified to degree level in a STEM subject, with experience in the full Software Development Lifecycle, using a modern high-level language ideally applied to the task of orchestrating hardware control & monitoring, and with an understanding of good software design principles and design for usability.

You may have experience from a science environment, with excellent problem-solving skills, and ideally with a working knowledge of X-ray Microscopy.

Experience of working with large and complex code bases would be an advantage, as would experience of Python, Java, Spring, JMS message-oriented middleware, Java RMI, the HDF5 file format and the Eclipse RCP platform.

You should display good communication and interpersonal skills in order to work closely with science and engineering colleagues and collaborators.

To Apply

Please use the online application process to apply and tell us why you believe you are suitable for this role.

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