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Job Posting
The position will provide engineering and engineering management related to mechanical systems and design. This individual will contribute to the development of facilities.

Position Summary

The Mechanical Engineer will work with the SURF Engineering, Science, Underground Access, and Facility Infrastructure Departments to facilitate design development and integration of new research facilities and to support existing lab operations.  The position will provide engineering and engineering management related to mechanical systems and design.  This individual will contribute to the development of facilities for a wide variety of scientific research programs and experiments, as well as supporting the existing lab infrastructure operations and maintenance. The Mechanical Engineer will work directly with scientific, engineering, and project staff for planning and development of new experiment-related infrastructure and facilities. The individual will also work directly with facility operations and maintenance personnel to advise on and establish best practices for maintenance and operations of the existing infrastructure including safety critical systems. This position has responsibility for ensuring sound engineering practices are applied to science projects and operations throughout the facility.  This position reports to the SURF Director of Engineering.  

Functional responsibilities (includes but are not limited to)

The primary duties for this assignment include:

  1. Develop concepts for preliminary and detailed engineering design for surface and underground mechanical and industrial facilities and infrastructure to support science, engineering research programs, and facilities operations.
  2. Lead or participate in project planning, design, oversight, integration, and coordination of activities among engineering and research teams to plan and design infrastructure for proposed experiments. This includes all facility mechanical and industrial subsystems for underground construction and operations.  
  3. Evaluate mechanical components proposed for installation at the facility, either approving or offering recommendations for modifications to obtain approval. This will include interaction with outside vendors to source information for effective decision-making. 
  4. Work with SURF staff to support the development and execution of operations and maintenance strategies on infrastructure to ensure safe, efficient long-term function. 
  5. Provide support for the evaluation of mechanical and industrial hazards and development of effective controls to mitigate or eliminate these hazards.
  6. Prepare presentations and other written reports to effectively communicate engineering concepts, analysis, and planning to internal and external audiences on topics relating to functional responsibilities. 
  7. In the role of Owner's Representative, provide oversight and coordination for scope definition and contract management of out-sourced AE consultant services including production of detailed specifications, engineering design, construction drawings, and maintenance documents, and planning functions relating to engineering analysis and studies.
  8. Perform project and logistics management functions for construction and installation projects including overseeing all aspects of project delivery to ensure systems are constructed in accordance with plans and specifications. This will include developing and recommending acquisition strategies for effective project execution. 
  9. Develop both preliminary and detailed cost estimates and project schedules to support effective planning, budget development, and program baseline scheduling for supported science and facility programs. 
  10. Professional peer review of reports, designs, drawings etc. prepared by other SURF staff.
  11. Use engineering design and other supporting software to effectively and efficiently perform the functions noted above. 

Desired Qualifications

  • A degree (B.S. or higher) in Mechanical Engineering or a closely related field is required.
  • A minimum of 8 years of progressively responsible experience in mechanical engineering or related fields.
  • A South Dakota Professional Engineers (PE) license or the demonstrated ability to obtain the license within two years is preferred.  
  • Knowledge of MSHA and OSHA related requirements and standards preferred. 
  • Sound engineering judgment, engineering management, and evidence of strong communication skills. This includes relevant experience with design, construction, and operation of mechanical and industrial facilities required to support various infrastructure including shafts, hoist systems, wires ropes and rigging/lifting systems, pumping, HVAC, monitoring equipment, rock handling, and underground civil construction and excavation equipment. 
  • Educational background and/or experience may include design, construction, management or operations in some of the following areas: 1) Large-scale underground mechanical systems installations, 2) Underground and surface facilities with relevant technical challenges, 3) federally funded projects, 4) Engineering project management and supervision, and/or 5) Industrial systems engineering.  
  • Ability to use AutoCAD, project management, and Microsoft related software tools in the performance of functional responsibilities.  

Work Requirements

Successful applicant will be required to: 

  • Perform limited physical labor and light lifting.
  • Work in all types of conditions (heat, humidity, wet, cold)
  • Work in an underground environment to include operational shafts and other mine related infrastructure.
  • Some travel for conferences and other experiment and design development reviews.
  • Provide proof of a valid driver’s license.

The South Dakota Science & Technology Authority (SDSTA) is an Equal Opportunity/Affirmative Action employer committed to the development of a diverse workforce. Applicants are invited to self-identify as an individual with a disability or as a protected veteran. Forms are available on the website or upon request from Human Resources. 



Eileen J. Brosnahan
Human Resource Administrator
Contact by email