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Mechanical Engineering Group Leader

United Kingdom Atomic Energy Authority, (UKAEA)
UKAEA Culham, Oxfordshire
£63,856 (inclusive of MPP) + excellent benefits including outstanding pension
Closing date
21 Jun 2023

Job Details

Company Description

By 2050, the planet could be using twice as much electricity compared to today. Are you interested in managing a team to contribute to shaping the future of the world’s energy? If so, read on.

Fusion, the process that powers the Sun and Stars, is one of the most promising options for generating the cleaner, carbon-free energy that our world badly needs. UKAEA are at the forefront of realising energy from fusion, working with industry and research partners to deliver the ground-breaking developments that will underpin tomorrow's fusion power stations with the aim of bringing fusion electricity to the grid.

RACE is a leading laboratory, solution provider and operator of robotics and autonomous systems. Our cross-functional competencies enable us to deliver innovative solutions that combine advanced control systems, sophisticated mechanical designs, state-of-the-art sensing, and extraordinary performance. We also develop sophisticated VR, optimisation, and planning tools to enhance these systems. We have a dynamic, and highly motivated team of 80 engineers, scientists and technicians devoted to building systems that perform tasks in some of the most extreme environments in the world.

As we work towards our mission and goals, UKAEA has devised values that capture the spirit of how we work. These values include being: Innovative, Committed, Trusted and Collaborative.

Job Description

Who are we looking for?

RACE has exciting and novel projects in the world of robotics and remote maintenance that offer a chance to be more innovative and creative in coming up with solutions to customer requirements.

We are looking for an innovative and collaborative Group Leader to lead one of the mechanical engineering groups in RACE, providing line management and group leadership whilst maintaining a delivery focus.

What will you be responsible for?

- Leading the assigned group, working with section leaders with responsibility for allocation and professional development of engineers.
- Ensure adherence to the quality management system with particular focus on technical control to ensure high quality (right first time) output of the units engineering design work.
- Recruit and develop engineering staff to expand the unit’s capabilities, matching this with the growing diverse project portfolio; enabling knowledge capture and transfer to maximise the capabilities of the unit.
- Provide technical and project leadership on projects of large significance or scale, influencing the direction of the organisation and/or external collaborators. The role holder provides specialist technical knowledge and direction in a complex field.
- Propose, define, manage and deliver major projects and lead project teams on complex projects for external and/or internal customers that are applicable to future fusion devices and applications of related technology.
- Serve as a point of authority in mechanical engineering design and advise on technical solutions, designs and/or critical plant operational issues.
- Overcome cultural and procedural barriers to delivery, working across UKAEA departments to identify and execute continuous improvement in line with the evolving project portfolio.
- Occasional travel to customer / client locations may be required.

As part of your role you could be asked to work in radiation-controlled areas or in beryllium controlled areas. Full training and medical assessments will be provided if this is necessary.


Essential Skills & Experience:

- A relevant engineering degree or equivalent.
- Chartered Engineer status with a suitable professional institution.
- Ability to perform exploratory design calculations using first principles.
- Substantial proven capability in engineering analysis and a good working knowledge of engineering materials and their properties.
- Demonstrable experience with relevant environmental factors such as radiation hardness, human access restrictions and radiological safety.
- Proven ability to lead multidisciplinary teams, including; mechanical, structural, electrical and control engineers, and also finance and procurement representatives.
- Ability to identify, prioritise and manage risk in a proportionate manner.
- Good working knowledge of structural, solid mechanics and engineering materials.
- Extensive experience of working to legislation and design standards (particularly those related to mechanical handling).
- Good communication and technical writing skills.
- Excellent interpersonal skills.

Additional Information


RACE work is fascinating, exciting, and challenging. Learn more about some of the exciting RACE projects that you can be involved with, such as JET, ITER, ESS Active Cell Facility, LongOps, and many others.

Some of the benefits that we offer:

- Competitive salary

- Hybrid working

- Flexible working options, including family-friendly policies and part-time arrangements

- Generous 30.5 days’ annual leave allowance, increased with the length of service

- Outstanding defined benefit pension scheme

- Employee Assistance Programme and trained Mental Health First Aiders

- Emergency paid leave

- Wide range of career progression opportunities supported by our employee development programme

- Corporate bonus scheme, up to 7% Base Salary

- Relocation allowance (up to £8K, subject to eligibility)

Additional information

We welcome applications from under-represented groups, particularly from individuals from black and other ethnic minority backgrounds, including nationality and citizenship, people with disabilities and women.

Please note all employees working at the UK Atomic Energy Authority will be required to complete an online Disclosure Certificate application as part of their clearance. The Disclosure & Barring Service (DBS) checks will show the details of all current criminal convictions or confirm no such convictions.

Note for applicants who are applying for employment with UKAEA either from outside the United Kingdom or who have spent time outside the United Kingdom in the last five years. Please visit the UK Government website. If the country you reside in or have resided in is not listed on this website or the UK Government is not aware of how to obtain a criminal records check from that state, then we cannot process your application.



Do you want to help shape the future of the world's energy? If so, Culham Centre for Fusion Energy is the place to be and we can offer a range of career opportunities. These include scientific and engineering roles, as well as technical and administrative positions supporting our research programme.

We have professionally accredited training schemes for graduate engineers and apprentices, and strong links with universities around the UK for PhD placements, as well as job vacancies for various positions when they occur, working in a friendly international environment. 


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