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Threat Detection and Countermeasures Scientists and Engineers

Defence Science and Technology Laboratory (Dstl)
Dstl Porton Down, Salisbury, Wiltshire SP4 0JQ
£25,052 - £38,066
Closing date
31 Oct 2022

Job Details


The Threat Detection and Countermeasures Group (TDaC) is one of twelve Groups within the Platform Systems Division working together to deliver battle winning Science and Technology (S&T) to support the Ministry of Defence and wider Government in a broad range of ground breaking technical research and operational areas.

Now is an exciting time to join us as we grow our group and look forward to pushing the boundaries on technology advancements and exploring new concepts. Driven by our core values, we are consistent in challenging the norms, embracing diversity and rewarding innovation. When you join us as a member of a diverse community of scientists and engineers, we will strive to support you in realising our mission statement and foster an inclusive, safe working environment where you feel motivated by the opportunities to develop your own learning, drive your own career development, and deliver impactful Science and Technology in the process.

In these roles you will gain exposure to innovative technologies and seek to build an in-depth understanding of platform protection, the threat environment, and the likely nature of future military operations. If you are someone who loves problem solving, then this is your opportunity to tackle the problems our Armed Forces face both today and in the future!

Through the use of practical laboratory and/or modelling and simulation (M&S) tools, and field trials, you will be influencing and providing complex advice to colleagues across defence on countermeasure solutions that has direct impact to our military customers and defence procurement that really matter.

Dstl recognises the importance of diversity and inclusion as people from diverse backgrounds bring fresh ideas. We are committed to building an inclusive working environment in which each employee fulfils their potential and maximises their contribution.

We particularly welcome female and ethnic minority applicants and those from the LGBTQI community, as they are under-represented within Dstl at these levels.

Job description

With a number of roles available, we are seeking Physicists and Engineers to join our team to enable UK Forces freedom of action through the ability to detect and defeat complex threat systems. 

If successful, you will be part of a growing team that provides advice on current and future countermeasure concepts required to protect platforms from a range of threats. Our work informs military decision makers of the effectiveness of countermeasure solutions and we research, develop and advise on future technologies and equipment which could enhance aircraft survivability.

 You will work across Dstl and wider MOD to develop an in-depth understanding of the technology challenges and operational context of aircraft and martime platform protection methods as well as supporting relevant stakeholder communities across MOD and industry to find viable and exploitable countermeasure solutions.

 Specific roles we have available include:

Electro-Optic Countermeasure Modelling & Simulation Scientists (Level 4-5)

In this role you will be part of a team conducting complex assessments and providing key advice to the military customer on how to keep our aircraft safe. We are looking for proactive and able problem solvers who can develop and use a range of complex software and hardware tools to address big picture questions in a fast-evolving area of Defence.

You will be designing and running experiments which will drive the development and assessment of tactics and techniques used by front line aircraft to defeat hostile threats. A keen interest in computer programming, electronic systems and modelling and simulation of real systems or physics phenomena is highly desirable, as is a baseline understanding of the optical systems and the electromagnetic spectrum.

Electronic and Digital Signal Processing Engineers (Level 4-5)

As an electronics engineer you will be pivotal to the development and sustainment of Dstl’s world leading laboratory, field trial and simulation capabilities. You will be key to growing and maintaining the team’s understanding of the inner complexities of ever-evolving multi-sensor threats, ensuring that Dstl is suitably equipped to advise on the protection of military platforms now and in to the future.

We are looking for a highly motivated individual with a keen eye for detail, who can operate effectively with a team of engineers and physicists to overcome theoretical and practical challenges. An interest in both analogue and digital electronics design, including computer based modelling is highly desirable.

Physicists (Level 4-5)

The Physicists roles within this are:

  • Electronic Attack analyst (Level 4-5)
  • Air Countermeasure modelling and simulation scientist engineer (Level 4-5)

Our armed forces are facing a challenging and rapdily evolving threat environment where modern optically guided threat weapons systems present a significant challenge to the survivability of UK air platforms operating in the contested airspace.

We are looking for dynamic and innovative people to join us in developing countermeasure techniques to ensure we continue to have cutting edge testing capabilities, as well as a future focused mindset in research that ensures we are able to continually evolve air and maritime platform protection, to meet the current and future operating environments. This role will require laboratory based working and modelling equipment to design and test Radio Frequency (RF), optical and laser based experiments that represent countermeaure and threat warning interactions to support the development of next generation platform protection systems.

Naval Radar Countermeasures Scientist/Engineers (Level 4-5)

The Royal Navy has invested in a fleet of highly sophisticated ships including the new Queen Elizabeth Class Aircraft Carrier. Now we need your help to identify technologies and principles that could help keep these platforms operating in a hostile, contested environment!

You will advise colleagues in the Military and Defence procurement on maritime radar countermeasures issues. Collaboration with equivalent project teams from across our International Allies will likely be a core part of your role. Key topics facing the team at the moment include: the use of passive decoys for protecting ships; maritime electronic attack concepts; and the defence of Carrier Task Groups through cooperative electronic warfare. A collaborative approach to research and problem-solving will enable you to support our enthusiastic team in delivering high impact research for our Royal Navy.

Systems Engineer- Platform and Mission Level Survivability Lead (Level 4-5)

You will be in charge of developing the Integrated Survivability capability that will bring together Science and Technology across the domains. The purpose is to develop coordinated countermeasure solutions, including those delivered from third-party bearers, which protects platforms from hostile action when operating in complex and connected multi-sensor threat environments; includes the use of other mission level enablers.

For more information, please see our attached documentation.


Your ability to communicate scientific work clearly and concisely will be key to success as you collaborate and coordinate across Dstl, international partners and wider MOD to ensure the team has a robust capability to meet current and future needs. You will also have the opportunity to undertake continued professional development in preparation for more senior technical leadership roles.


  • Good understanding of the physics behind sensors, dynamics, Radio Frequency, optics and lasers;
  • An interest in military systems such as aircraft, maritime vessels, missiles and the context of their use;
  • Systems engineering mindset relevant to identifying requirements, planning projects and conducting verification and validation;
  • Good interpersonal (verbal, presentational and written) communications skills;
  • The ability to think and work innovatively to overcome current and future problems;
  • The ability to apply a broad variety of analytical techniques to solve problems.


  • Evidence of conducting scientific or analytical activities and delivering to time;
  • Communicating difficult concepts and results effectively to a wide audience via a range of means (reports, presentations);
  • Experience of technical planning and formulating initiatives into structured activities.

Important Information

Our work in defence, security and intelligence requires our employees to be UK Nationals who are able to gain a high level of security clearance to undertake the projects we are involved in to protect us from security threats. For this reason, only UK Nationals will be able to apply for this role. If you are an international or dual-national candidate, and you think you have the skills we need, please consider applying to any of our government, security or defence partners.

 This role will require full UK security clearance and you should have resided in the UK for the past 5 years. For some roles Developed Vetting will also be required, in this case you should have resided in the UK for the past 10 years.

Technical skills

We'll assess you against these technical skills during the selection process:

  • Please state which roles you are interested in an why.
  • Please state what your skills are and how they meet the requirements for you chosen role
  • Please give examples of projects that you have completed using those skills and how you delivered it. Use STAR (situation, task, action. result) to structure your answers.


Dstl’s full range of great benefits can be found in the information pack which includes:

  • Financial: An excellent pension scheme starting from 26% employer contribution. In Year Rewarding Achievement bonuses and thank you vouchers. Rental deposit scheme and cycle to work scheme.
  • Flexible working: Full flexibility working options include alternative working patterns, compressed hours, job shares and annualised hours. Remote working may be available dependent on role.
  • Flexible working hours: Ability to bank hours in a 12 month reference period including the ability to accrue and use 3 days per calendar month.
  • Annual leave: 25 days pro rata (rising to 30 after 5 years) plus 8 public holidays with the ability to buy/sell 5 additional days per annum.
  • Family: Maternity, adoption or shared parental leave of up to 26 weeks with full pay, an additional 13 weeks statutory pay and a further 13 weeks unpaid
  • Learning and Development: Dstl encourages and supports charterships, accreditations and provides employees access to fully funded apprenticeships up to level 7 (Masters Degree). Dstl will pay for 2 memberships with relevant bodies/institutions. Employees also have access to Civil Service Learning.
  • Facilities: Onsite parking, EV Charging points, restaurants, cafés and gyms.

The information pack can be found attached to the job specification on Civil Service Jobs. 

Our Diversity Networks

We have a number of support networks to ensure all employees feel supported at work. These include the following:

  • Sexual Orientation and Gender Identity Network
  • Race, Faith and Culture Network
  • Parents and Carer Support Network
  • Alternative Working Network
  • Gender Equality Network
  • New Starters Network
  • Enabled Network, for people with visible and non-visible disabilities.

Things you need to know Security

Successful candidates must pass a disclosure and barring security check.

Successful candidates must meet the security requirements before they can be appointed. The level of security needed is security check.


About us

The Defence Science and Technology Laboratory (Dstl) is the science inside UK defence and security. A proven national asset, Dstl is an executive agency of the Ministry of Defence (MOD) providing world class expertise and delivering cutting-edge science and technology for the benefit of the nation and allies.

Who we are

Dstl is one of the principal government organisations dedicated to science and technology in the defence and security field.

Dstl supplies specialist services to MOD and wider government, working collaboratively with external partners in industry and academia worldwide, providing expert research, specialist advice and invaluable operational support.

We are innovative, collaborative and impactful.

Our responsibilities

Our responsibilities include:

  • supplying sensitive and specialist science and technology services for MOD and wider government
  • providing and facilitating expert advice, analysis and assurance on defence procurement
  • leading on the MOD’s science and technology programme
  • understanding risks and opportunities through horizon-scanning
  • acting as a trusted interface between MOD, wider government, the private sector and academia to provide science and technology support to military operations by the UK and her allies
  • championing and developing science and technology skills across MOD

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