Pennsylvania State University
Company Website
Full Time
Closes: 7 July 2023
  • July 7, 2023
  • LIGO High Performance Computing (HPC) Operations Engineer

    LIGO High Performance Computing (HPC) Operations Engineer

  (ICDS) seeks a talented and goal-oriented individual to join our Operations Team as a High-Performance Computing (HPC) Operations Engineer. The Operations Team includes a group of HPC engineers to assist in the design, development, and implementation of engineered solutions to support the scientific goals of the Laser Interferometer Gravitational-wave Observatory (LIGO) project.


    Penn State is a research powerhouse, and the Institute for Computational and Data Sciences supports a broad swath of this research—from studying the origins of far-away galaxies to developing materials for next-generation energy production, and from looking at ways to overcome misinformation and societal discord, to understanding how communities worldwide can adapt to a changing climate. ICDS works with researchers from more than 70 academic departments from nearly all of Penn State’s academic colleges and campuses, facilitating new collaborations, funding new areas of research, collaborating to overcome computational and data science challenges, building a diverse community of scholars, and providing a robust supercomputer for the Penn State community, called Roar. ICDS seeks to equip researchers with the most cutting-edge computing tools and resources to further their science, and as a part of ICDS, you will be contributing to this goal.


    As the LIGO HPC Operations Engineer, you will:


    • Assist in providing solutions to ensure the prompt availability of data from the world-wide gravitational-wave detector network to Penn State resources and for ensuring compatibility with specific gravitational wave analysis software


    • Lead the development, maintenance, and implementation of engineered solutions for the ICDS LIGO cluster and research cyberinfrastructure


    • Actively collaborate with LIGO faculty members at Penn State and engage with researchers and computing staff across the international LIGO and Open Science Grid collaborations


    • Proactively contribute to engineering plans, schedules, requirements, and documentation for system enhancements


    • Collaborate with team members, scientific researchers, and vendors to analyze system issues and develop innovative solutions


    • Assist in developing engineering methods to pro-actively monitor and enhance LIGO performance, operability, and stability


    • Create and maintain system and operational documentation


    Candidates must be able to demonstrate experience in the following areas:


    • Configuration management, system administration, and server provisioning in a Linux environment


    • Familiar with containerization tools such as Docker and Singularity


    • An understanding of programming techniques


    Desired qualifications and skills include:


    • Working knowledge of the Open Science Grid (OSG), working knowledge of programming common Linux scripting languages, such as Bash, Python, Perl, Ruby


    • Experience with Foreman, Satellite, Puppet, and/or Ansible configuration management systems


    • Experience with the HTCondor job scheduler


    • Experience with programming languages, such as C/C, FORTRAN, CUDA, MPI, OpenMP


    • Experience in High Performance Computing (HPC) engineered components, such as storage systems, cluster computing, networking


    Education and Experience Requirements:


    • Bachelor’s Degree in an Engineering or Science discipline


    Candidates must also have impeccable ethics and integrity with a strong work ethic as well as strong interpersonal and written skills and the ability to work well in a team environment.


    At this time, work for this position has the potential to be performed in a hybrid model with a combination of remote and on-campus presence.


    Specific duties of this position require US citizenship.


    The following background checks must be successfully completed for this position:


    • This position will require successful completion of standard background checks


    To learn more about working for ICDS, please visit

  is committed to and accountable for advancing diversity, equity, and inclusion in all of its forms. We embrace individual uniqueness, foster a culture of inclusive excellence that supports both broad and specific diversity initiatives, leverage the educational and institutional benefits of diversity, and engage all individuals to help them thrive. We value inclusive excellence as a core strength and an essential element of our public service mission.


    Employment with Penn State includes many benefits and rewards, including:


    • Generous paid time off program


    • Competitive health and medical insurance


    • 75% Penn State tuition discount for employees and dependents


    • Professional development programs


    • Career advancement opportunities


    • Nationally recognized arts, entertainment, and sporting events


    • Welcoming local community


    • Well-respected and top-ranked public-school systems


    To learn more about our benefits, visit our


    Apply online at


    CAMPUS SECURITY CRIME STATISTICS: For more about safety at Penn State, and to review the Annual Security Report which contains information about crime statistics and other safety and security matters, please go to, which will also provide you with detail on how to request a hard copy of the Annual Security Report.


    Penn State is an equal opportunity, affirmative action employer, and is committed to providing employment opportunities to all qualified applicants without regard to race, color, religion, age, sex, sexual orientation, gender identity, national origin, disability or protected veteran status.


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