Instrument Maker I

The Facility for Rare Isotope Beams (FRIB) will be a new scientific user facility for nuclear science, funded by the Department of Energy Office of Science (DOE-SC), Michigan State University (MSU), and the State of Michigan. Under construction on campus and to be operated by MSU, FRIB will provide intense beams of rare isotopes (that is, short-lived nuclei not normally found on Earth). FRIB will enable scientists to make discoveries about the properties of these rare isotopes in order to better understand the physics of nuclei, nuclear astrophysics, fundamental interactions, and applications for society. 

This position affords an exciting opportunity to become part of the world-class FRIB Project, and to get in on the ground floor of an emerging scientific user facility that will expand nuclear science into a whole new realm of possibility.

Position overview

FRIB is searching for an Instrument Maker I to join the FRIB Project Team. The successful candidate will support the assembly, installation, testing, and commissioning work for FRIB. The Instrument Maker I will fabricate, maintain, adjust, assemble, repair, and/or participate in the modification of precise and specialized instruments, assemblies, and parts for research purposes, and assist in the design and development of parts, equipment and devices using a combination of moderately complex electronic, electro/mechanical, and cryogenic equipment.

Major position responsibilities

  • Responsible for power coupler processing and assembly

  • Responsible for inspecting and cleaning of components

  • Perform cold testing and leak checking

  • Assist with coldmass assembly

  • Assist in documentation

  • Safe operation and maintenance of clean room equipment

  • Under direction of group leader, assemble and process the fundamental power couplers for FRIB cryomodules

  • Under the direction of the group leader inspect and clean in ultrasonic bath components of the FRIB cryomodule coldmass

  • Perform cold shocking, with liquid nitrogen, and leak checking with helium mass spectrometer coldmass components and superconducting cavities

  • As member of the assembly team, participate in assembly of superconducting radio frequency cavities, superconducting solenoids, and associated components on the coldmass following detailed specifications and procedures

  • As member of the assembly team, participate in documenting the assembly processes of the coldmass and test result in activity logs

  • Read, understand, and interpret engineering drawings, specifications and procedures.

  • As a member of the SRF team, maintain the integrity of the SRF clean room, its equipment and operations

  • Safely operate systems with hazards following detail operation and safety procedures



  • Knowledge normally acquired by completing a two-year associates degree in mechanics or related field or an equivalent combination of related technical training

  • Two years experience as a Research Trades Assistant II or equivalent experience in one or more skilled trades areas specific to the job duties to be performed

  • Thorough knowledge of the methods, materials, tools, equipment, occupational hazards, and safety precautions of the trade areas specific to the job duties to be performed

  • Occasional to frequent lifting of twenty-six pounds or more

  • Ability to use ladders and elevated work platforms to perform work


  • Ability to work and communicate completely with people of diverse backgrounds and education

  • Basic knowledge of personal computer terminology and operations and the ability to use email and the internet

  • Work experience in component engineering, assembly, and leak checking procedures (i.e. HVAC repair, contracted plumbing, automobile mechanics, welding)

  • Demonstrated mechanical aptitude of assembly techniques, tools, and equipment

  • Ability to recognize actual or potential non-conformances

  • Ability to document work and data

  • Motivated, detail-oriented, and ability to follow and uphold critical process protocols



MSU employees receive excellent benefits including health/dental plans, a generous retirement plan, and educational assistance.

How to Apply

For immediate consideration, please visit, search for posting number 4881 and follow the application process.

MSU is committed to achieving excellence through cultural diversity. The university actively encourages applications and/or nominations of women, persons of color, veterans and person with disabilities.

About FRIB and MSU, and the East Lansing Community

FRIB is currently under construction and baselined at a total project cost of $730M. Upon start of user operation in 2022, FRIB will enable scientists to make discoveries about the properties of rare isotopes in order to better understand the physics of nuclei, nuclear astrophysics, fundamental interactions, and applications of rare isotopes to benefit society.

MSU is one of the largest university campuses in the U.S. with a beautiful campus of 5,000 tree- filled acres. It has 17 degree-granting colleges and is a center for academic and research activities as well as the arts and athletics.

The campus sits between Lansing (Michigan’s capital city) and East Lansing. The Lansing area has a population of 350,000 and offers lovely suburban areas, loft condos and other urban living opportunities as well as easy-to-get-to rural areas. A symphony orchestra, excellent health care, many community and professional theatres, rivers, lakes, outdoor festivals, close access to large cities and Lake Michigan make for a near perfect living environment.


MSU is an affirmative action, equal opportunity employer.

Job Type:
Skilled Trades