Real-Time Control Software Engineer

Devens, MA
SPARC Team – Software /
Full-time /
Commonwealth Fusion Systems (CFS) has the fastest, lowest cost path to commercial fusion energy.

CFS collaborates with MIT to leverage decades of research combined with groundbreaking new high-temperature superconducting (HTS) magnet technology. HTS magnets will enable compact fusion power plants that can be constructed faster and at lower cost. Our mission is to deploy these power plants to meet global decarbonization goals as fast as possible. To that end, CFS has assembled a team of leaders in tough tech, fusion science, and manufacturing with a track record of rapid execution. Supported by the world’s leading investors, CFS is uniquely positioned to deliver limitless, clean, fusion power to combat climate change. To implement this plan, we are looking to add dedicated people to the team who treat people well, improve our work by adding multifaceted perspectives and new ways of solving problems, have achieved outstanding results through a range of pursuits, and have skills and experience related to this role.

The SPARC Software team seeks an exceptional software engineer to develop real-time software for the SPARC control system. SPARC senses thousands of physical measurements while controlling millions of amps to superconducting magnets and millions of watts of RF power to the plasma.  These systems must interface with the SPARC plasma control system, data system, and other plant systems running on industrial control platforms.

As a member of the SPARC software team, you will be a hands-on technical leader, in charge of writing excellent quality, production-ready code for mission-critical real-time systems. You will collect functional requirements from plant engineers, operations engineers, and physicists and produce software solutions to meet these requirements. 

You will work with simulation and test engineers to integrate your software into software testbeds, hardware testbeds, and the SPARC Control system. The culmination of your team’s work will control SPARC through first plasma, fusion operations, and the first time a controlled fusion reaction produces more energy than it consumes.

This team member will:

    • Develop real-time software platforms and associated toolchains
    • Contribute to the software development lifecycle for control and data acquisition software across SPARC
    • Write and maintain the documentation of SPARC software functional requirements from design engineers, operations engineers, and plasma physicists
    • Work with instrumentation and controls engineers to specify hardware components and integrated systems for fast control and measurement systems
    • Support SPARC system integration, commissioning, and plasma fusion operations

The ideal candidate will have most, if not all, of these requirements:

    • Engineering degree in related fields, such as computer science, computer engineering, electrical engineering, etc.
    • Experience in developing software in C, C++, Python, PLC languages, or similar language.
    • Understanding of the fundamentals of real-time software systems.
    • Experience programming real-time controls on PLCs

Additional experience and/or qualifications:

    • Broad control system software development experience including SCADA system development, real-time application development, software architecture development and fault-tolerant systems
    • Low-latency network communication
    • Linux
    • TwinCAT and/or TIA Portal 
    • Networking (IP/UDP/TCP)
    • Software/hardware interfaces (ADCs/DACs, uarts, ethernet, etc.)
    • Experience deploying software to industrial control hardware
    • Ability to lift up to 50 lbs occasionally
    • Perform activities such as typing, standing, stooping, and sitting, for extended periods of time
    • Work in a facility that contains industrial hazards including heat, cold, noise, fumes, strong magnets, lead (Pb), high voltage, high current, pressure systems, and cryogenics
    • This role will be expected to work primarily onsite to support prototyping, testing, commissioning, and operation of SPARC in Devens, MA
    • Willingness to occasionally travel or work required nights/weekends/on-call
    • #LI-Onsite
CFS team members thrive in a fast-paced, dynamic environment and have demonstrated exceptional results through a range of different pursuits. We all tightly align with our company values of integrity, execution, impact and self-critique. As we grow, we are looking to add talented people who are mission driven and bring diverse perspectives and new ways of solving problems.

At CFS, we deeply value diversity and are an equal opportunity employer by choice. We consider all qualified applicants equally for employment. We do not discriminate on the basis of race, color, national origin, ancestry, citizenship status, protected veteran status, religion, physical or mental disability, marital status, sex, sexual orientation, gender identity or expression, age, or any other basis protected by law, ordinance, or regulation.