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Principal Process Engineer - PECVD

Req ID:  75063

Do you want to change the world? We do, too.
The energy market is roughly $4 trillion globally, and solar penetration is less than 1%.  But just one hour of sunlight, if harnessed, could power the entire world for a year. We have the opportunity to completely change the way energy is produced, distributed and consumed on a global scale, and we’re looking for talented, committed people to help us drive our growth and achieve our goals.
SunPower is a global solar energy solutions company with a rich heritage of pioneering the best energy technologies in the world. Our solutions are unrivaled in terms of long-term reliability, efficiency and guaranteed performance, and our company is unmatched in terms of global reach and scale. Through design, manufacturing, installation and ongoing maintenance and monitoring, SunPower provides its proprietary, world-record efficient solar technology to residential, commercial and utility customers worldwide.
SunPower is changing the way our world is powered every day with a brilliant, passionate and driven team of more than 7,000 in North America, Europe, Africa, Asia and Australia. In an industry that is reshaping the world’s energy future, there’s no better place to be than SunPower.
We believe that our employees create our brand – with each project, each communication, each task completed and each interaction. Experience is critical to SunPower in regards to not only our customers but also our employees and dealer partners. As such, we strive to hire candidates that are service focused. The experience we would expect the ideal person to deliver is:

Role Description

As a Principal Thin Film Process Engineer within SunPower’s solar cell R&D team, you will be a key contributor on a team that is pushing the limits of thin-film processing, equipment and metrology for current and next-generation solar cell technologies.  You are an expert in plasma-enhanced chemical vapor deposition (PECVD) and process integration relating to thin-film technology.  You’ll use this deep PECVD knowledge, together with your experience integrating thin film processes into semiconductor technology, to develop new generations of SunPower’s industry-leading solar cell architecture.  This includes establishing robust thin film deposition processes through rigorous characterization and statistical validation before ramping them into high volume manufacturing.  You will team with equipment, integration and reliability engineers to assess and develop the necessary films, metrology and toolsets to achieve these objectives.  You will have a significant role in guiding and contributing to technology roadmaps, in addition to your responsibilities for process development and optimization.


Essential Duties and Responsibilities

  • Primary responsibility is the development of novel thin-film materials, using plasma-enhanced chemical vapor deposition (PECVD) to improve the efficiency, cost, reliability and quality of solar cells.
  • Coordinating/executing experiments in the laboratory, at production sites, and at vendor sites.
  • Analyzing and presenting data clearly and concisely, with recommendations
  • Integration of new processes to upstream and downstream processing and product requirements.
  • Identifying critical process/equipment interactions and working with equipment engineers to ensure that existing and future PECVD tooling can deliver robust and scalable processes.
  • Owning a project from initial development through transfer to high volume manufacturing (HVM).
  • Communicating within a development team, with internal project customers, and with outside vendors.
  • Training other engineers and technicians on all aspects of PECVD film process development/integration.


Qualifications and Experience

Minimum Requirements:

  • Graduate degree in Materials Science, Physics, Electrical Engineering or related fields and 7+ years of thin-film processing experience.
  • Extensive industry experience with plasma-enhanced chemical vapor deposition (PECVD).
  • Broad knowledge of thin-film characterization techniques (e.g. ellipsometry, FTIR, XRD, SEM, EDX, RBS, and SIMS).
  • Self-starter, comfortable with owning a development project from ideation through transfer to high volume manufacturing. 
  • The candidate should have a demonstrated track record of developing novel thin-film process/equipment solutions and scaling these up into high volume production.
  • Flexible, creative problem solver, willing to adapt to unexpected situations to get results.
  • Team player, positive outlook, good at working with diverse groups.
  • Excellent communicator.
  • Willing to travel up to 10% of the time.


Preferred Qualifications:

  • Ph.D. in Materials Science, Physics, Electrical Engineering or related fields.
  • 10+ years of PECVD experience in a leading semiconductor or solar cell company.
  • Knowledge of solar cell processing and characterization.
  • Solar cell device physics background or equivalent (i.e. semiconductor physics) a plus.
  • Extensive experience with Semiconductor process development, integration and problem-solving methodologies.
  • Demonstrated project leadership ability, inclusive of management and delivery of technical, project schedule, and cost milestones.  Demonstrated ability to lead 5-10 person technical teams in fast-paced and high-pressure environments a plus.
  • Engineering statistics and experience with statistical software (e.g. JMP) a plus.
  • Experience with statistical process control (SPC) in a production environment.


Equal Employment Opportunity
The Company is an equal employment opportunity employer and makes employment decisions, including but not limited to, hiring, firing, promotion, demotion, training, and/or compensation, on the basis of merit. Employment decisions are based on an individual’s qualifications as they relate to the job under consideration. The Company’s policy prohibits unlawful discrimination based on sex (which includes pregnancy, childbirth, breastfeeding, or related medical conditions, the actual sex of the individual, or the gender identity or gender expression), race, color, religion, including religious dress practices and religious grooming practices, sexual orientation, national origin, ancestry, citizenship, marital status, familial status, age, physical disability, mental disability, medical condition, genetic information, protected veteran or military status, or any other consideration made unlawful by federal, state or local laws, ordinances, or regulations. The Company is committed to complying with all applicable laws providing equal employment opportunities. This commitment applies to all persons involved in the operations of the Company and prohibits unlawful discrimination by any employee of the Company, including supervisors and co-workers.

EOE Minorities/Females/Protected Veterans/Disabled

SunPower Supports EEO

Accommodation for Applicants to SunPower Corporation
SunPower Corporation is an Equal Employment Opportunity / Affirmative Action employer and provides reasonable accommodation for qualified individuals with disabilities and disabled veterans in job application procedures. If you have any difficulty using our online system and you need a reasonable accommodation due to a disability, you may use the following alternative email address to contact us about your interest in employment at SunPower Corporation: Please indicate in the subject that line of your email that you are requesting accommodation. Only candidates being considered for a position who require an accommodation will receive a follow-up response.



Availability of Affirmative Action Plan for Review

SunPower is a federal government contractor. As a part of the Company’s obligations under law, it must develop a written Affirmative Action Program (AAP) for the Disabled, Recently Separated Veterans, Armed Forces Service Medal Veterans, Disabled Veterans and Active Duty Wartime Or Campaign Badge Veterans and for Women and Minorities as specified by law. Non-confidential and non-proprietary aspects of the AAP are available for inspection by applicants and employees, consistent with applicable law, which will be made available during office hours by contacting the EEO Officer.




SunPower Values

  • Put Customers First
  • Win Together
  • Lead Decisively
  • Innovate Relentlessly
  • Do the Right Thing

Nearest Major Market: San Jose
Nearest Secondary Market: Palo Alto

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