Quantum computing laboratory manager

Research group leader: Professor Michelle Simmons
Salary range: AU $101–126k plus 17 per cent employer superannuation and leave loading
Contract: Three years fixed term with possible extension


This is a prestigious technical position, within a dynamic and highly collaborative international research environment. The role is based at Silicon Quantum Computing Pty Ltd, a start-up company attached to the headquarters of the Centre of Excellence for Quantum Computation and Communication Technology at the University of New South Wales in Sydney, Australia. The company is a unique start-up, being a public-private partnership between industry, government and UNSW Sydney that seeks to commercialise silicon quantum computing technology being developed in Australia – technology that has the potential to revolutionise computing worldwide.

The successful candidate will join the world-leading team of Professor Michelle Simmons, who has an international reputation for developing a radical new technology for building precision single atom qubits in silicon. With the recent demonstration of single atom qubits in natural silicon with world record coherence times and the highest fidelity single shot spin read-out, this group is poised to scale to 10-qubit architectures within the next five years.

Within this environment the laboratory manager will oversee the company’s ultrahigh vacuum scanning probe and cleanroom facilities. They will have responsibility for installing, testing and maintaining UHV and cleanroom equipment. This role will be at the heart of ensuring design and fabrication of the quantum computer, working alongside electronics engineers and physicists for the testing stages of silicon based quantum computers. Responsibilities will include expanding our extensive research facilities for the development of atomic-scale electronics in silicon as well as general maintenance of equipment to ensure a safe operating environment for staff and students.

The research program is focused on the development of a 10-qubit quantum integrated circuit prototype requiring the multiple detection and control of individual spins in silicon, the controlled coupling between them, and the coherent transport of quantum information.

This is one of more than 20 positions currently open for applications. View the full list of available roles.



Specific responsibilities for this role include:

Level 8

  • Ensure the safe and efficient operation of the SQC’s prototyping atomic-electronics research and development facilities, including ultrahigh vacuum and cleanroom laboratories.
  • Provide expert technical advice to the research staff and students working on the SQC’s research and development programs.
  • Oversee the operation and servicing of the scanning probe and cleanroom laboratories including installation and maintenance of water, gas, power, vacuum and liquid nitrogen cryogenic services for the UHV MBE/STM and cleanroom facilities. This includes adhering to a minimal-down time policy by careful routine maintenance and instant repair philosophy.
  • Repair, or organise the repair of, laboratory equipment and systems.
  • Responsible for monitoring of research and safety equipment and preventative maintenance.
  • Responsible for maintaining a stock of consumables (eg ultrahigh vacuum parts, gaskets etc.) for the ultrahigh vacuum systems. This involves the negotiation of prices with outside suppliers, ensuring that SQC gets the best deal on all purchases.
  • Responsible for the efficient operation of the computing facilities within the laboratories, including efficient back-up of data.
  • Ensure that the work for which staff and students are responsible is carried out in ways which safeguard the WHS of staff or students in their charge and visitors, including contractors whom they engage.
  • Produce clear, up-to-date, compliant safety documentation and procedures. Ensuring that Occupational Health and Safety policies are adhered to at all times in the laboratories.
  • Liaise with UNSW Facilities and subcontractors as required.

Level 9

  • Responsible for the design and construction of new equipment or modification of existing systems as required by current research projects.
  • Perform routine daily measurements and operations.
  • Develop and implement plans for major equipment purchases (within allocated budget) and/or replacement to ensure that laboratories remain state of the art facilities, including preparing recommendations and business cases as relevant.
  • Independent application of laboratory related policy and procedure for best practice within the laboratories.
  • Drive a culture of continuous improvement, leading the evaluation of existing equipment, infrastructure, service delivery and training, as well as systems, procedures and protocols, and lead knowledge transfer across the team of current and future trends and technologies, to identify opportunities for improvement.
  • Provide recommendations for new methodologies and solutions and implement change.



Level 8

  • A relevant technical qualification with substantial experience or equivalent level of knowledge gained through an appropriate combination of education/training and/or relevant experience in laboratory maintenance and operations.
  • Proven experience with high vacuum (<110-6mbar) and ultrahigh vacuum.
  • (<110-10mbar) systems, technologies and techniques.
  • Proven experience with semiconductor research laboratory equipment including knowledge of gas handling systems, cooling water supplies, back-up generators, uninterruptible power suppliers and clean rooms.
  • Demonstrated experience in technical expertise of research laboratories, including conducting maintenance, overseeing efficient operation of equipment, oversight of consumables, oversight of building infrastructure and safety documentation.
  • Able to diagnose and/or repair electronic equipment, including high voltage (>5kV).
  • Hands-on experience and certifications in using mechanical and electrical work-shops; ability to read technical drawings.
  • Demonstrated initiative and a high level of self-motivation with proven organisational and technical skills.
  • An ability to work in a team, to meet deadlines and to prioritise competing demands.
  • Ability to implement equal opportunity and diversity policies and programs.
  • Capacity to implement required WHS policies and safe work practice.

Level 9

  • Demonstrated ability to lead others in a technical capacity and manage projects on a given budget.
  • Demonstrated dedication to continuous improvement through long-term planning and expansion of laboratory policy and facilities.
  • Experience in developing, implementing and managing Work Health & Safety and risk management systems and processes in a laboratory environment.


DOWNLOAD the full position description

Closing date: Applications close at 11:59pm on 31 December 2017 AEDT. We encourage all candidates to complete the application process as soon as possible. Potential start dates are negotiable for the successful candidate.

Contact: michelle [dot] simmons @unsw.edu.au


An appointment to this position is subject to the approval of Silicon Quantum Computing Pty Ltd. Personal information submitted as part of an application for this position may be disclosed to SQC for the purpose of processing the application.

UNSW aspires to be the exemplar Australian university and employer of choice for people from diverse backgrounds. UNSW aims to ensure equality in recruitment, development, retention and promotion of staff and that no-one is disadvantaged on the basis of their gender, cultural background, disability, sexual orientation or identity or Indigenous heritage. We encourage everyone who meets the selection criteria to apply.

UNSW partners with Australia’s leading diversity organisations, networks, and campaigns. Please refer to UNSW’s diversity offerings for further information on our flexible work and leave options, and support for carers (childcare, parent rooms, parental leave).