Specialized Design Technician

Payroll Title: UCP V
Class Code: 0537-9085
Job Family: TLR
FLSA Code: E
Score: 488


Under the general direction of a designated supervisor or faculty member, designs, constructs and maintains complex equipment and instruments to support specialized research and teaching activities at the University.


Incumbents in this position are expected to solve new and unusual technical problems with minimum recourse to a supervisor and to be thoroughly familiar with all standard equipment, instruments, and methods.  Incumbents may have knowledge of complex mechanical methods or be highly skilled artisans in fields such as glassblowing, forging or ceramics, and may be required to create new equipment designs, requiring complex procedures and equipment.  Incumbents may also have responsibility for operating one or more laboratories and for supervising others.


  1. Designs, constructs, tests, trouble shoots and installs devices, equipment and instruments, which may be complex or specialized, e.g. electron gun components, electron scattering apparatus support and alignment devices, diffusion pumps, helium cryogenic dewars, and high vacuum systems.
  2. Adjusts, calibrates, aligns, tests and modifies complex equipment and instruments, e.g. laboratory and unusual test equipment involving the use of machine tools (power and hand), metal bonding equipment (arc, gas, resistance welding), lathe operations.
  3. Performs preventive maintenance and repairs, which may be complex, on a variety of scientific and mechanical equipment, e.g. including fatigue machines, vacuum systems, hydraulic presses, shop equipment, stages etc.
  4. Advises faculty, researchers, technicians and students on equipment and component capability and performance; recommends or designs appropriate equipment for experimental purposes.
  5. Monitors inventory of supplies and may estimate time, material and cost of impending projects.
  6. Resolves complex design and malfunction problems of equipment.
  7. Instructs others in the proper and safe use of a variety of shop, mechanical, or trade specific equipment and instruments, e.g. metal cutting machines, hand tools, precision measuring instruments, glassblowing machinery, forging tools.
  8. Operates a variety of specialized instruments and devices, e.g. rolling mill, swaying machine, specimen peeling tools, glass working lathes, grinding equipment, torches, vacuum systems, etc.
  9. Provides general laboratory and instructional support, as needed or required.
  10. If applicable, may oversee daily operations of one or more research or teaching laboratories.
  11. May provide related research or instructional support as needed.
  12. Keeps informed regarding current developments in related field or industry, and specific academic discipline, if applicable.
  13. May train and/or oversee the work of other technicians and student help.
  14. Performs related duties as required.


  1. Mechanical institute graduation with an associates degree in Mechanical Engineering or related field; three to five years progressively responsible experience in the construction, maintenance, testing, repair, and design of scientific or experimental equipment or equivalent combination of education and experience. For technical specialty: Bachelor’s degree in related field and three to five years post-apprentice experience in design, fabrication, and repair of equipment used in research and teaching, or equivalent combination of training and experience.
  2. Knowledge of principles of mechanics, technical specialty area, or of scientific discipline in department to be served, if applicable.
  3. Knowledge of the methods and materials used in repair and maintenance of scientific and mechanical instruments and devices, and related technical specialty.
  4. Ability to read and interpret complex diagrams and specifications, and to modify complex mechanical and scientific instruments and devices.
  5. Ability to independently resolve complex problems.
  6. Ability to oversee laboratory operations


Revised: 12/01
Previously Mechanical Design Technician III