Organisation NERC
Organisation Detail National Oceanography Centre
Reference Number IRC245863
Location Southampton See on Map
Salary £28200 - £32430
Date Posted 12 July 2018
Grade NERC-6 New
Contract Type Fixed Term Appointment
Hours Full Time
Closing Date 29 July 2018
Interview Date

Brief Description

Salary: £28,200 - £32,430
Grade: 6
Contract Type: Fixed Term (3 years)
Hours: Full Time
Closing Date: 29th July 2018

About us:

The National Oceanography Centre (NOC) is a national research organisation, delivering integrated marine science and technology from the coast to the deep ocean and is one of the top five institutions of its kind in the world. With sites in Liverpool and Southampton, it is the UK’s leading centre for sea level science, coastal and deep ocean research and technology development. 

NOC is part of the Natural Environmental Research Council (NERC), which is one of the nine partners within UK Research and Innovation (UKRI). For more information visit

The Marine Autonomous and Robotic Systems (MARS) group at National Oceanography Centre develops, operates and maintains the UK’s marine science robotic fleet. The fleet is housed in a new state of the art facility which is ranked as one of the best in Europe. The fleet consists of large propeller driven AUVs, subsea gliders, unmanned surface vehicles, and ROVs. This fleet, amongst the largest of its kind, is used by the UK science community and wider stakeholders to address global marine science questions. It operates worldwide from the coast to the deep oceans and the vehicles have been deployed beneath glacial ice tongues in Antarctica, under sea ice in the Arctic and have operated in every ocean in between. 

The MARS group is working on UK and EU-funded projects with other partners in the UK and Europe, both research institutes and commercial companies. 

Context or Background:

Through development and adoption of new technologies, the overall aim of the MARS group is to greatly improve the efficiency with which we operate autonomous vehicles in the world’s oceans. The focus is to help scientists in their efforts to understand major issues such as global climate change, the sequestration of carbon and monitoring of ocean resources.

Job Purpose:

Reporting to the Head of Marine Autonomous Systems Development, you will play a leading role in the development of Autonomous Underwater Vehicles (AUVs) and other Marine Autonomous Systems (MAS) operated and developed at the National Oceanography Centre. The role will be based within the Marine Autonomous Systems Development group, but will provide support in the mechanical design of equipment and installations across MARS through project based work.

The roles may also involve supporting other MARS equipment and more broadly other sea systems equipment when necessary.

Expectations of the role:

You will be a core member of the MARS development group and will be responsible for developing and testing of electro-mechanical systems for the MARS fleet of Autonomous Underwater Vehicles. You will support a range of projects including design, manufacture and testing mechanical systems for new Autosub vehicles being developed with funding from the Natural Environment Research Council.

You will work across a portfolio of projects and will play a key role in development of new projects in collaboration with science and industry stakeholders.

About the role:

A fantastic opportunity has arisen for a Mechanical Design and Development Engineer to join the Marine Autonomous and Robotic Systems (MARS) group at the National Oceanography Centre, Southampton.

The National Oceanography Centre is the United Kingdom’s centre of excellence for oceanographic sciences, with the remit to provide national capability and leadership for big ocean science. You will be joining a team of enthusiastic engineers who are designing and operating the NOC fleet of autonomous underwater vehicles (AUVs) and other marine based scientific equipment.

As a design and development engineer at NOC, you’ll have a varied role. Sometimes you will be working in teams to develop sophisticated AUV projects but at others, having individual responsibility for complete packages of work such as scientific equipment fits to one of our fleet AUVs.

About you:

For this role, you will have:

  • solid experience of mechanical design ( ideally with experience of electro – mechanical systems, mechanisms or machinery),  from concept to completion
  • sound experience of 3D CAD based design and creating detailed manufacturing drawings
  • good knowledge of design for manufacture, assembly, test and servicing
  • a good eye for detail with a passion for developing robust, reliable designs and design processes
  • genuine interest in developing novel equipment for deep ocean science and exploration
  • you will have experience of working both in a team and individually as required
  • you will have experience of working with CAD screen but also keen to take a practical lead in prototype building and testing of their designs
  • ability to demonstrate your sound engineering skills and experience will be as valuable as academic qualifications.

Key Accountabilities/Primary Responsibilities:

  • design and development of mechanical and electro/mechanical systems for the MARS fleet
  • prototype, build and testing of mechanical systems
  • supporting cruises and sea- going operations, including system configuration pre-mobilisation, time at sea supporting equipment, fault finding, repair and post cruise support
  • training and continuing professional development.

Expectations of all staff:

  • comply with Research Council and NERC policies at all times, including Equal Opportunities Policies and ensure that duties are carried out in accordance with relevant policies, procedures and guidance documents as directed by NOC
  • promote and demonstrate a personal commitment to NOC values and People Strategy
  • promote and demonstrate a personal commitment to Working with Respect – NOC Guidance
  • attend relevant seminars, workshops and training events and maintain professional development by completing CPD (Continuous Professional Development) appropriate to the role
  • maintain a safe working environment by attending Health and Safety training as required and follow local codes of safe working practices and actively contribute to embedding a safety culture across NOC
  • adopt and promote awareness of NOC’s environmental aims and other initiatives
  • carry out other duties within the scope, spirit and general purpose of the post and adopt a flexible approach to work
  • as duties and responsibilities change this job description will be reviewed and revised in consultation
  • undertake such other duties within the scope of the post as may be reasonably requested by your Manager.

Other information:

The starting salary for this position will be between £28,200 and £32,430 per annum (Band 6). Depending upon skills and experience, additional allowances may be available for exceptional candidates.

Please note for this role we are not able to sponsor candidates who require a right to work in the UK.

Organization Description

UK Research and Innovation is a new entity that brings together nine partners to create an independent organisation with a strong voice for research and innovation, and a vision to ensure the UK maintains its world-leading position in research and innovation. More information can be found at

The National Oceanography Centre (NOC), part of the Natural Environment Research Council, is a national research organisation, delivering integrated marine science and technology from the coast to the deep ocean and is one of the top five institutions of its kind in the world.

With sites in Liverpool and Southampton, it is the UK’s leading centre for sea level science, coastal and deep ocean research and technology development. Working closely with its partners and associates, it provides capability to meet needs across the UK marine science community (

Shortlisting and Interview Criteria

Qualifications and Knowledge:


  • HNC/Degree in mechanical engineering, electromechanical design or a related discipline
  • high level of proficiency in 3D CAD and engineering drawings (ideally Autodesk Inventor).

Experience related to position:


  • experience of mechanical design for electromechanical systems
  • knowledge of product development, including the development and implementation of test procedures and best operational practices.


  • experience of marine technology development.



  • ability to demonstrate a pragmatic approach to problem solving and conflict resolution
  • self-motivated, pro-active, flexible and innovative with the ability to plan and organise own work, manage unforeseen situations and produce efficient work practices, both at sea and on shore, within agreed standards and deadlines.



  • ensures a high degree of accuracy and close attention to detail
  • clearly communicate technical information both verbally and in writing
  • capable of generating new ideas and following through to implementation.

Other requirements:


  • willingness to participate in sea trials and/or other off-site activities which at times may be outside of normal working hours
  • this role will require mandatory training in Personal Survival Techniques and the ability to pass an ENG1 medical examination.


  • holder of a valid passport and able to apply for a US Visa (ESTA) or C1D Visa, where required.

What we can offer you:

At the National Oceanography Centre (NOC) we know that the quality of our science and the impact that we want it to have depends entirely on the knowledge, skills and engagement of our people. The NOC is committed to flexible employment practices to support employees’ work and personal commitments where possible. Our flexi-time system and flexible working policy contribute to this important aim.

In return for your talents, we offer a competitive remuneration package, including a RCUK pension scheme, 30 days annual leave with a further 14 Public/local days off and free car-parking.  Opportunities for further training and development are supported.

For more information visit Working at NOC.

Our Commitment as an Employer:

The NOC is an equal opportunities employer and welcomes applications from all sections of the community. There is a guaranteed interview scheme for suitable candidates with a disability and we welcome applications from ethnic minorities currently under-represented. The NOC is an Investors in People organisation, and has signed up to the Athena SWAN charter principles to take action to address gender equality.

All internal and external applications are handled by the UK Shared Business Services Ltd (UK SBS). For further information about the role and how to apply, please visit our website at quoting reference number IRC245863. To apply, please submit an up-to-date CV and cover letter. If you are unable to apply online, please contact UK SBS by telephone on +44 (0)1793 867003.

For general enquiries regarding this role, please contact Dr Alex Phillips ( or 02380 591855).

Closing date: Sunday 29th July 2018

You will work across a portfolio of projects and will play a key role in development of new projects in collaboration with science and industry stakeholders.

If you have not already logged into iRecruitment (including as a current employee); you will be re-directed to the login/register page by clicking the ‘apply now” button.

If you don’t have an account with us by choosing to register; you consent to UK SBS processing the information you provide as part of the Recruitment Service. You can select appropriate job alerts and notifications as part of your account preferences, and you are able to close your account (withdraw consent) should you wish to do so.  Before starting your online application and inputting your personal details, please read our Privacy Notice which contains full details of how your information is processed once you have made an application.

If you would like to receive this advert in an alternative format (e.g. large print, Braille, audio or hard copy), are unable to apply online or do not wish to create an account but would still like to apply for a specific role, please contact us by telephone on 01793 867000.

Related Vacancies