Mechanical Engineer – Contract Position

The Global Foundation for Ocean Exploration is a 501c(3) non-profit organization dedicated to empowering the global underwater science community with the tools and expertise required to explore the greatest depths of the planet’s largest and deepest bodies of water, and return with stories of discovery to amaze and inspire a global audience. We are seeking a Mechanical Engineer with 5-10 years of experience in the field of oceanographic vehicle and instrumentation design and operations.  This is a contract position. The candidate should have a B.S. degree in Ocean Engineering, Mechanical Engineering, Naval Architecture or equivalent field of study.  Preferred candidates will hold a M.S. degree in a relevant engineering program.  This person should be able to demonstrate experience working on projects within the subsea industry, both in an engineering capacity as well as an operations role on a seagoing vessel. The candidate should have a balanced capability as a design-oriented engineer as well as possess hands-on experience in the shop and at sea.  When ashore, the desk-bound engineering and documentation portion of the position will be balanced by ample time in the shop assembling, fabricating, and maintaining equipment.  The candidate will be expected to travel up to three months per year, most of that time offshore on an oceanographic research vessel conducting ROV and/or AUV operations.

Engineering and Design Capabilities

  • Exquisite attention to detail
  • Subsea design of ROV and AUV systems, structures, and brackets
  • Appreciation for the aesthetic and ergonomic aspects of a design
  • Hydrostatic buoyancy and trim
  • Pressure vessel design
  • Electronics Chassis mechanical design
  • Designing  for welded structures
  • Corrosion prevention
  • Hydraulic System design
  • Finite Element Analysis (FEA)
  • Drawing development and review
  • Interfacing with vendors and machine shops
  • Mentoring junior team members
  • Inspection and quality control
  • Maintaining organized documentation

Operations and Hands-On Capabilities

  • Travel and work off-shore up to 3 months per year
  • Understanding of ROV and/or AUV operations on a sea-going vessel
  • Experience going to sea in an operations and possibly in a supervisory role
  • Preference will be given to candidates with ROV Piloting experience
  • Preference will be given to candidates with experience maintaining hydraulic ROV manipulators
  • Knowledge of ancillary shipboard equipment:  cranes, winches, umbilicals, rigging
  • Familiarity with hydraulic and pneumatic systems
  • Some understanding of High Voltage power systems and Fiber Optics
  • Some understanding of Low Voltage power systems and electronics
  • Ability to troubleshoot complex systems
  • Experience with an array of hand and machine tools found in a machine shop and wood shop
  • Hands-on assembly and fabrication methods

Computer Skills

  • Solidworks
  • Solidworks Simulation
  • Microsoft Word and Excel
  • Google Docs
  • Basic understanding of computer networks and ability to interface with remote colleagues via computer connectivity
  • Knowledge of navigation software, Hypack, preferred
  • Computer programming skills not required, but desired:  Python, Visual Basic, C++

Position Location

North Kingstown, RI area.  Ability to travel and spend up to 3-months per year  offshore on an oceanographic research vessel

Required Experience

Engineering: 5-10 years

Required License or Certification

Professional Engineering (PE) License preferred

Required Education

Bachelor’s, engineering in a relevant field. Master’s in a relevant engineering program preferred


Commensurate with experience

To Apply

Please send CV and a cover letter to  indicating  your willingness to work at sea for up to 3 months/year, and why you are interested in working for the Global Foundation for Ocean Exploration.