Optical Assembly Engineer 

EOE Statement Thorlabs values its diverse environment and is proud to be an equal opportunity employer. All qualified applicants will receive consideration for employment without regard to race, color, religion, gender, gender identity or expression, sexual orientation, national origin, genetics, disability, age, or veteran status.  
About the Organization Founded in 1989, Thorlabs seeks to accelerate the forward movement of scientific discovery and advancement! As a vertically integrated manufacturer of photonics components, instruments, and systems, our vast product portfolio includes over 20,000 items, ranging from optics and optomechanical positioning components to imaging systems, many of which are customer inspired.

Photonics is the foremost technology driving innovation in science and engineering. As the number of technological innovations has grown, Thorlabs has extended its core competencies in an effort to play an ever increasing role serving the Photonics Industry at the research end, as well as the industrial, life science, medical, and defense segments.

Headquartered in Newton, NJ, Thorlabs has grown to approximately 2300 employees with manufacturing and sales offices in the United States, Canada, United Kingdom, Germany, France, Sweden, Japan, China, and Brazil. As light-based technologies push into new markets, Thorlabs plans to enter early with the products and services required to ensure the ultimate success of our customers.  
Category TAP - Advanced Photonics  
Location Corporate Headquarters - Newton, New Jersey  
Full-Time/Part-Time Full-Time  

The Optical Assembly Engineer is a mid-level engineer with experience in lens design, manufacture, precision alignment and metrology. The individual will be responsible for developing diffraction limited lenses as well as leading the development of the precision alignment and assembly group. Characterizing and verifying lens performance will play an equal role. This position requires an individual with leadership qualities and offers an attractive growth path into management. Although the location of the position is in Newton, NJ, from time to time it may be required to undertake duties at other Thorlabs locations.

Essential Job Functions include the following, but are not limited to:

  • Design and develop diffraction limited lens systems for the UV to NIR wavelength range.
  • Lead the effort to expand capabilities in our precision assembly department. Stay abreast of current industry trends and techniques relating to optical metrology, precision alignment and assembly.
  • Develop, critique, and verify optical metrology techniques and procedures. Specific areas include but are not limited to: Interferometry, spectroscopy, optical alignment, beam profiling, surface profilometry, tomography, and surface roughness.
  • Work closely with optical engineers to confirm that new optical designs are characterized properly, and that test results match optical and mechanical models.
  • Participate in design reviews to ensure that new products are specified properly, procedures are documented, and all potential manufacturing and metrology pitfalls have been identified prior to product release.
  • Keep current with newest applications, products, and metrology techniques within the industry. Share, discuss, and collaborate while looking for opportunities to implement.
  • Become an expert on all appropriate metrology and testing techniques related to current and new optical products. Act as a mentor to disseminate this expertise to production and engineering personnel.
  • Provide hands-on assistance in developing and verifying precision assembly techniques used in producing high numerical aperture microscope objectives and other lens systems.
  • Interact with production personnel to define and solve manufacturing/design issues and implement cost reduction ideas with regard to company products.
  • Assists drafting, lab testing, manufacturing, quality, and planning as required.
  • Perform liaison function between engineering team and all manufacturing operations for any related issues, problems, or improvements.
  • Work with the quality department to define problem areas and implement product improvements based on customer repair/rejection concerns.
  • Prepare technical data such as qualification test procedures, acceptance test procedures, reports, component maintenance manuals, etc.
  • Coordinate as required with other internal groups including Sales, Accounting personnel, Fabrication, Technical Marketing, Technical Support, OEM Team, Management, Planning, and Assembly.



  • Experience in optical design, precision manufacturing and characterization of optical systems.
  • Experience using Zemax is preferred.


  • Bachelor's degree in Optical Engineering, Mechanical Engineering, Physics or a related engineering disciplines. A Master's degree is desirable

Specialized Knowledge and Skills:

  • Thorough understanding of diffraction, wave optics, polarization and interferometry
  • Experience with optical modeling software such as Zemax or Code V.
  • Technical background in aligning optical systems and characterizing optical specifications
  • Demonstrated technical background and hands on experience in such fields as optics, opto-mechanical design, laser optics, polarization, microscopy, and telecommunications. Hands on experience with optics, including alignment, measurement, and testing
  • Knowledge of current optical design, fabrication, assembly, and test techniques
  • Experience with SolidWorks, CAD, or other modeling software.
  • Experience with Labview, Python or C++ preferable
  • Strong project Management skills with a deep sense of ownership
  • Strong ability to take initiative
  • Demonstrated innovation
  • Flexibility/adaptability in a fast-paced & dynamic environment

Thorlabs values its diverse environment and is proud to be an Equal Employment Opportunity/Affirmative Action employer. All qualified individuals will receive consideration for employment without regard to race, color, religion, gender, gender identity or expression, sexual orientation, national origin, genetics, disability, age or veteran status. Job descriptions are not intended as and do not create employment contracts. The organization maintains its status as an at-will employer. Employees can be terminated for any reason not prohibited by law.


This position is currently not accepting applications.

To search for an open position, please go to http://thorlabs.appone.com


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