Sr. Structural Engineer- Solar

Job Description
Job Description:
Our high growth and leadership position in the renewable energy business offers outstanding opportunities to individuals seeking an exciting work environment in one of the most important industries for the 21st century. First Solar is a leader in the development and manufacturing of thin film solar modules used in grid-connected solar power plants, as well as a provider of complete solar generation solutions for U.S. utilities. Our culture is one where teamwork, continuous improvement, achievement of results, and environmental responsibility are core values. We are seeking new associates who are motivated to contribute their talents to making cost-effective solar energy an important part of the worlds energy mix.

Basic Job Functions:

Responsible for performing structural and mechanical design, analysis and engineering of photovoltaic mounting systems and structures in compliance with US and International Building Codes.


7+ years in advanced structural design of mechanical systems in harsh environments in compliance with Building Codes

5+ years Solidworks CAD experience

3+ years of Finite Element Analysis (FEA) experience required

3+ years of Computational Fluid Dynamics (CFD) experience required

3+ years experience with US (mandatory) and International Building Codes

Experience with part manufacturing for low cost mass production

Working experience with GD&T methods

Masters degree in Civil Engineering or Structural Engineering required
Must possess Professional Engineer (PE) license or ability to obtain the same

Required Skills:

Ability to perform static and dynamic structural design and analysis of structures involving steel, aluminum, concrete and glass material.

Ability to research and analyze the effect of wind loads on individual structures and the repercussions and effects of grouping structures (ex: into integrated solar racking arrays)

Ability to perform aerodynamics analysis including flutter stability, galloping instability, vortex shredding excitation, and torsional divergence; and numerical analysis, including finite element analysis (FEA), computational fluid dynamics (CFD), and hand calculations.

Demonstrated skills interfacing with internal teams to implement product designs conforming to requirements and specifications; designing shallow and deep/pile foundations; working with vendors, supply chain, and manufacturing groups to introduce new products and control yields; prototyping new products and sustaining existing products.

Demonstrated familiarity with design codes including: IBC, ASCE, AISC; ADM, ACI, CBC, and EUROCODE;

Previous use of CAD tools including SAP2000, ANSYS, CFX, Fluent, AutoCAD, Solid Works/PDM and LPILE

Demonstrated development of innovative solutions to mechanical and structural problems based on high level requirements

Extensive Design For Manufacturability (DFM) experience, including working directly with suppliers

Demonstrated success in design of products for low cost and mass production through interface with suppliers and performing value engineering

Experience working with formal documentation control processes and tools

Ability to design and specify metal coatings, including galvanization in conformance with specific standards (ASTM etc.) and environmental conditions

Ability to read and understand plans, specifications, drawings, and documents related to engineering and construction

Ability to perform standard civil/structural engineering discipline mathematical calculations and

Ability to work with equations, including but not limited to geotechnical analysis, static force calculations, wind

Ability to perform analysis of concrete and steel design, site development drawings etc.

Ability to effectively direct and manage detailed structural design work performed by outside consultants.

Essential Functions & Responsibilities

Integrate into existing multi-disciplinary team designing state-of-the-art solar mounting systems for massive deployment at very low cost and take strong role in technical development and direction

Propose, design, and validate new ways of reducing the total amount of structural material in racking systems to reduce the overall cost of the system.

Perform Load resistance factor design and allowable stress design;

Perform Dynamic analysis for wind and earthquakes;

Develop Statistics for wind data; foundation design for shallow and deep pile foundations;

Develop and improve structural systems to optimize for cost, manufacturability, long life, reliability

Specify and document structural and mechanical systems for part and subassembly detailing by others

Work with suppliers and manufacturers to develop designs to ensure ease of manufacture at multiple suppliers while improving costs and throughput

Work with internal Quality and Supply Chain organizations to ensure designs and supplies meet quality and ramp targets

Use Solidworks CAD tools to design and document all part design work

Work with field teams to understand construction and assembly needs and develop solutions and roadmaps to reduce time and cost of product installation and maintenance

Execute projects according to the company's formal New Product Introduction process while maintaining high standards of design information configuration management.

Ability to work on multiple aspects of a product and required technologies, including adapatation for worldwide use

Company Description: This goal has driven First Solar to become one of the fastest growing manufacturers of solar modules in the world. First Solar FS Series 2 PV Modules represent the latest advancements in solar module technology, and are rapidly driving the cost of solar electricity to rates comparable with traditional fossil fuel-based energy sources.


First Solar

Job Code

State or Province

New Jersey

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