Research and Development Engineer


UHV Design specialise in the design, manufacture, and supply of innovative market leading high vacuum (HV) and ultra-high vacuum (UHV) motion and heating products. We are fortunate to have an internal design team, a fully equipped machine shop and cleanroom enabling us to own the entire process of development, prototyping through to production.

Our products are used in a diverse range of applications, primarily in thin film deposition, surface science analysis and beam lines. Due to continued growth, we are looking to expand our development team and are currently recruiting for a research and development engineer to be based at our site in Laughton near Lewes in East Sussex.

This role is a key position providing technical scientific support for sales, engineering and test teams. There will be an element of developing technical solutions for R&D or NPI projects which will include liaising with relevant parties, researching available data to answer queries whilst creating and running experiments where data is not available.

The individual will be a strong self-starter, experienced, degree educated with a good hands-on understanding of product research / development and test, preferably in surface science or a related field.

The individual will also require a high standard of communication and organisation, including writing reports, draft procedures and present findings to a wider audience including customers or end-users. There will be agreed deadlines for this information to be available depending on the individual project.

Your main responsibilities as a research and development engineer will include:
  • The development and innovation of scientific instruments in a cleanroom environment, this will include NPI requirements and proving of concepts identified by yourself and the business.
  • Supporting the sales department to respond to customer queries or assist with quotations of a technical or scientific nature.
  • Supporting the engineering department during product design phases, you will be the go-to for applications advice.
  • Understanding materials behaviour and device characteristics to drive improved long-term instrument performance.
  • The characterisation of existing and new devices.
  • Working alongside engineering and test departments to assemble and test R&D products, providing feedback on initial builds or developments.
  • The authorship of supporting technical documents and processes and the ability to train others to use these methods.
  • Communicating with the engineering department to give feedback on research and suggest design changes to ensure performance and / or key characteristics are achieved.
Essential Skills / Attributes:
  • Degree qualified in physics, preferably with a theoretical and / or practical understanding of at least one of the following: thin film deposition, ultra-high vacuum, surface analysis.
  • A good, fundamental understanding of vacuum physics from first principles, together with a passion for using science to develop solutions and improve effectiveness and performance.
  • Ability to apply theoretical principles and concepts to a range of projects.
  • Resolve problems by identifying and selecting solutions based on experience and precedents.
  • Practical experience of assembling mechanical / electromechanical devices, experiments, jigs, fixtures, and laboratory equipment in a safe manner.
  • Experienced in operating a UHV vacuum system.
  • Good analytical skills, as well as evaluative judgement based on the analysis of factual and qualitative information in complicated or novel situations
  • Able to read and understand engineering drawings and designs fluently.
  • Experience with basic electronics and software for test automation.
  • Experience of writing test procedures, engineering specifications and progress reports.

Hours: 7:30-4:30 Monday to Thursday, 7:30-1:30 Friday, or 8:30-5:30 Monday to Thursday, 8:30-2:30 Friday

Salary: £35-45,000 per annum

Benefits: Our employees receive an excellent benefits package which includes 25 days holiday, a competitive pension scheme and a company contributed group share incentive plan on successful completion of the probationary period. We are also lucky enough to be based in a purpose-built manufacturing facility just outside Lewes and surrounded by the south downs, with that in mind a driving licence and own transport is necessary.

For more information or to apply for tyhis position, please email us at