Senior Mechanical Design Engineer

Date: 1 Jul 2024

Location: Sydney, NSW, AU

Company: CSIRO

Acknowledgement of Country

CSIRO acknowledges the Traditional Owners of the land, sea and waters, of the area that we live and work on across Australia. We acknowledge their continuing connection to their culture and pay our respects to their Elders past and present. View our vision towards reconciliation

Child safety

CSIRO is committed to the safety and wellbeing of all children and young people involved in our activities and programs. View our Child Safe Policy.

The opportunity

CSIRO Space and Astronomy operate a number of world-class radio astronomy observatories that are collectively known as the Australia Telescope National Facility or the ATNF. We are one of the world’s leading astronomical facilities and Australia’s premier radio astronomy research organisation.


As the Senior Mechanical Design Engineer, you will be a member of the Antenna and Receiver Technologies group within CSIRO’s Space and Astronomy business unit.  

You will lead mechanical design and development of high value low quantity technology products for use in radio astronomy and space science.  This role involves Finite Element Analysis (FEA); thermal modelling; mechanical design and the production of engineering reports and drawings. In this role, you will lead projects and interact with contract manufacturers and suppliers to ensure engineering developments are conducted to an agreed standard and within agreed timelines and budget.  You will provide leadership and mentoring to junior engineers and technicians.

At CSIRO we value and respect differences, and we are committed to building an inclusive culture by creating an environment where you can balance a successful career with your commitments and interests outside of work. We believe that you will do your best at work if you have a work / life balance. We are open to discussing flexible working opportunities with this role being offered on a full-time or part-time basis. Please raise your preference in your application.

We encourage applicants at different career stages to apply, including those who may not possess every skill listed. We welcome you to apply or reach out to us and we ask that you explain how your skills and experience align with our requirements in your cover letter.

Your duties will include:

  • Undertaking mechanical design tasks including Finite Element Analysis (FEA), and thermal modelling associated with the development of antennas, receiver and feed systems, radio frequency and digital systems for use in radio astronomy and/or space science applications. 
  • Producing high quality engineering/project reports and engineering drawings to AS1100 (or equivalent) suitable for distribution to clients, suppliers and contractors.
  • Overseeing the fabrication of prototype and/or proof-of-concept components or assemblies using in-house facilities.
  • Leading and managing interactions with contract manufacturers and suppliers to ensure engineering developments are conducted to an agreed standard and within agreed timelines and budget. 
  • Leading and managing small research projects and assisting with elements of larger projects including the management of external contracts.
  • Representing CSIRO externally, including in public forums, with industry or the research sector or with Government.
  • Managing interactions, including confidential discussions and meetings, with commercial partners.
  • Working effectively as an integral member of a multi-disciplinary team comprising scientists, engineers and technicians, at times working under broad guidance from more senior members of staff.
  • Providing leadership and mentoring to junior engineers and technicians.
  • Travelling to S&A observatories and other sites to assist in the maintenance, development, verification and commissioning of instrumentation.
  • Other duties as required.


Location: Marsfield (Sydney), NSW

Salary: AU$126k - AU$148k per annum (pro-rata for part-time) plus up to 15.4% superannuation

Tenure: Indefinite, full-time or part-time (minimum 0.8FTE)

Reference: 97118

To be considered you will need:


  • A bachelor’s degree in Mechanical or other relevant Engineering field.
  • Significant experience demonstrated in the use of industry standard 3D mechanical CAD tools (AutoCAD Inventor or equivalent) in the analysis and mechanical design of high value low quantity systems.
  • Significant experience demonstrated in the use of industry standard Mechanical FEA software (NASTRAN or equivalent).
  • Demonstrated knowledge of mechanical principles, materials and manufacturing processes.
  • Demonstrated ability to produce high quality engineering reports and engineering drawings to AS1100 (or equivalent), suitable for manufacture by suppliers and/or contractors.
  • Proven experience leading the design, development, verification and maintenance of high-value engineering products, such as science instrumentation.
  • Demonstrated experience providing engineering leadership and mentorship, supporting junior engineers and technicians in their professional development.
  • Demonstrated ability to work both collaboratively and autonomously as part of a multi-disciplinary team.


  • Experience in the design of high vacuum systems and an understanding of material behaviour including composites within this environment. 
  • Experience in FEA thermal analysis of cryogenic systems.
  • Experience in the maintenance, design, installation, verification and commissioning of astronomy instrumentation. 
  • Experience in the design of cryogenic and/or refrigeration systems, with an understanding of the materials used in these applications. 
  • Experience providing engineering leadership and mentorship, supporting junior engineers and technicians in their professional development.


For full details about this role please review the Position Description


Applications for this position are open to all candidates meeting the requirements of the role. Visa sponsorship will be considered if required for the right candidate. Appointment to this role is subject to provision of a national police check and may be subject to other security/medical/character requirements.


Please note, as part of this role, the successful applicant will be required to occasionally spend periods of up to two weeks at time working at locations away from Sydney; access and work at heights up to 100M above the ground and work in confined spaces.

Flexible working arrangements

We work flexibly at CSIRO, offering a range of options for how, when and where you work. 

Diversity and inclusion

We are working hard to recruit people representing the diversity across our society, and ensure that all our people feel supported to do their best work and feel empowered to let their ideas flourish. 


At CSIRO Australia's national science agency, we solve the greatest challenges through innovative science and technology. We put the safety and wellbeing of our people above all else and earn trust everywhere because we only deal in facts. We collaborate widely and generously and deliver solutions with real impact. 


CSIRO is committed to values-based leadership to inspire performance and unlock the potential of our people.


Join us and start creating tomorrow today!

How to apply

Please apply on-line and provide a cover letter and CV that best demonstrate your motivation and ability to meet the requirements of this role.

Applications close

1st of August 2024, 11:00pm AEST/AEDT