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Wafer Fab Process Engineer III

Thorlabs, Inc., Jessup, MD, United States
Employer Description

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 over 1800 employees with manufacturing and sales offices in the United States, 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.

Job Description

Job activities include new process/product development, new equipment introduction, process improvement, equipment improvement, process maintenance, equipment maintenance, lean manufacturing projects, and maintaining fab documentation. This position requires deep knowledge of semiconductor fab processes, process engineering core skills, equipment trouble-shooting skills, and a track record of using data-driven problem solving techniques (e.g. Six Sigma methods). Preference will be given to experienced candidates with a track record in project management and leadership positions within a semiconductor fabrication experience.

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

  • Introduce new product, process, equipment and material technologies into wafer fab in timely manner, using effective design input, evaluation testing, and project management.
  • Utilize continuous improvement tools, project management skills, team leadership, and basic engineering skills to 1) reduce manufacturing costs, 2) improve/sustain tight control of wafer fab manufacturing process.
  • Lead in all wafer process integration efforts to 1) develop robust/sustainable processes including, 2) determine/control the key process inputs that drive the required process outputs, 3) perform detailed root cause analyses and implement effective correction actions when process fails. Also includes creation and maintenance of all process documentation and training to technicians who perform the processes.
  • Provide engineering equipment ownership via creating/maintaining equipment operation procedures, training personnel, setting up tool qualification checks, developing effective PMs, and supporting maintenance/ops team during equipment down events.
  • Support wafer fab operations team in writing required documentation and leading various wafer fab improvement projects (e.g. Lean Manufacturing, 5S).
  • Support IT and wafer fab operations team in maintaining and improving all information systems related to the wafer fab. This include the creation of reports for wafer fab operations and engineering team to maintain and improve the production process.



  • Minimum of 8 years’ experience with semiconductor fab processes including CVD, Etch, photolithography, and e-beam evaporation (metals and optical coatings) processes.
  • Experience in semiconductor device and materials test/characterization.
  • Track record of using Six Sigma process improvement methods
  • Experience with troubleshooting and resolving semiconductor processing equipment issues, especially repair and maintenance of high vacuum systems.


  • A minimum of Master’s degree in Engineering or Physics

Specialized Knowledge and Skills:

  • Design of Experiments (DOE).
  • Statistical Process Control (SPC).
  • Project management and team leadership skills.
  • Working knowledge of the following software/programming languages: SQL, Visual Basic, C++, Matlab, JMP, R, SAS, L-edit, Microsoft Sharepoint, and Microsoft Office.
  • Semiconductor device physics, especially optoelectronic devices.
  • Knowledge of ISO 9001 Quality Management Systems.

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.


06 February 2020
07 March 2020
Masters Degree
Advanced Manufacturing