Systems Engineer (BE-CO-IN-2019-27-LD)

  • Geneva, Switzerland
  • Contract

Company Description

At CERN, the European Organization for Nuclear Research, physicists and engineers are probing the fundamental structure of the universe. Using the world's largest and most complex scientific instruments, they study the basic constituents of matter - fundamental particles that are made to collide together at close to the speed of light. The process gives physicists clues about how particles interact, and provides insights into the fundamental laws of nature. Find out more on

Job Description


Does the idea of developing the mission-critical computing infrastructure of the Accelerator complex at CERN, the largest particle physics laboratory in the world, and providing operational support, attract you? Become involved in the operation and evolution of the CERN accelerator computing infrastructure. CERN, take part!

You will join:

  • The Beams Department that is responsible for the operation and performance of the entire CERN accelerator complex, including the injector complex and their experimental areas and the LHC;
  • The Controls Group that is responsible for the specification, design, procurement, integration, installation, commissioning and operation of the controls infrastructure for all CERN accelerators, their transfer lines and the experimental areas. Support is also provided to the technical infrastructure services that rely on standard controls facilities provided by the Group;
  • The Infrastructure Section that is in charge of the specification, procurement, administration and support of the CERN accelerator computing infrastructure. This portfolio covers the high-performance server platforms of the accelerator data center, operator workstations and accelerator real-time hardware platforms with their associated fieldbus networks.


As a Systems Engineer, you will participate in the engineering processes involved in the operation and evolution of the CERN accelerator computing infrastructure.

You will join the system administration team of the CERN accelerator computing infrastructure.

You will contribute to the mandate of this team, covering the following domains:

  • Integration and monitoring of all systems connected to the accelerator control system (consoles, servers, real-time embedded platforms, network agents, etc.);
  • Installation, configuration and support of the control system computing platform for development and accelerator operation, based upon the Linux operating system;
  • Operation of central control system computing servers;
  • Computer and network security;
  • Deployment and management of virtualized hosts;
  • User support.

Your main activities will consist more particularly of:

  • Taking responsibility for different components and work-packages of the software infrastructure and taking a role as second level support for other components;
  • Taking active part of responsibility in the integration, knowledge and diagnosis of the operational services and applications deployed over of the control system architecture;
  • Participating in the CO-IN projects and studies (e.g.: monitoring system, services containerization, etc.) conducted in the perspective of the LHC Run 3 during the current 2 years shutdown of the accelerators complex and beyond.


Master's degree or equivalent relevant experience in the field of information technologies or a related field.


  • Proven experience in the operation of large scale distributed computing infrastructures, in particular:
  • High-performance and high-availability commercial server platforms.
  • Embedded platforms used for real-time computing (e.g. VMEbus, PCI).
  • Diagnostic and monitoring solutions for the above-mentioned platforms running the Linux operating system.
  • Experience with the management of a medium to large-scale computing infrastructure with a Linux operating system, using a configuration management tool such as Ansible, Puppet, Chef, or similar and a version control system such as Git or Subversion.
  • Proven experience and interest for software failure analysis, diagnosis and validation in Linux network environment (in particular for Java and C++ applications).

Technical competencies:

  • Knowledge of communication technologies and protocols.
  • Installation, operation and maintenance (preventive and corrective) of computing systems: management and configuration of large control system and distributed systems.
  • Knowledge of programming techniques and languages: familiarity with software development and/or debugging of JAVA, C++ or Python programs.
  • Knowledge of operating systems: Linux operating system, support and maintenance.

Behavioural competencies:

  • Working in teams: working well in groups and readily fitting into a team; participating fully and taking an active role in team activities.
  • Achieving results: having a structured and organised approach towards work; being able to set priorities and plan tasks with results in mind; delivering prompt and efficient service taking into account customer needs.
  • Communicating effectively: demonstrating a pro-active approach to resolving differences; addressing issues of conflict constructively; expressing opinions, ideas and suggestions with conviction and in a logical/structured manner; keeping to the point.
  • Managing self: working well autonomously; taking on activities and tasks without prompting.

Language skills:

  • Spoken and written English or French: ability to understand and speak the other language in professional contexts. 
  • Ability to draw-up technical specifications and scientific reports and to make oral presentations in at least one of the two languages.

Additional Information

Eligibility and closing date:

Diversity has been an integral part of CERN's mission since its foundation and is an established value of the Organization. Employing a diverse workforce is central to our success. We welcome applications from all Member States and Associate Member States

This vacancy will be filled as soon as possible, and applications should normally reach us no later than 28.04.2019

Employment Conditions

Contract type: Limited duration contract (5 years). Subject to certain conditions, holders of limited-duration contracts may apply for an indefinite position.

These functions require:

  • Work in Radiation Areas.
  • Interventions in underground installations.
  • A valid driving licence.
  • Work during nights, Sundays and official holidays, when required by the needs of the Organization.
  • Stand-by duty, when required by the needs of the Organization.

Job grade: 6-7

Job reference: BE-CO-IN-2019-27-LD

Benchmark Job Title: Computing Engineer

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