Optics Manufacturing Technician II-CNC – Newton, NJ

Optics Manufacturing Technician II-CNC

Thorlabs, Inc.

Newton, NJ


Optics Manufacturing Technician II-CNC

Thorlabs, Inc., Newton, NJ, United States

Employer Description

Founded in 1989, Thorlabs seeks to accelerate the forward movement of scientific discovery and advancement! As a vertically integrated manufacturer of photonics components, instruments, and systems, our vast product portfolio includes over 20,000 items, ranging from optics and optomechanical positioning components to imaging systems, many of which are customer inspired.

Photonics is the foremost technology driving innovation in science and engineering. As the number of technological innovations has grown, Thorlabs has extended its core competencies in an effort to play an ever increasing role serving the Photonics Industry at the research end, as well as the industrial, life science, medical, and defense segments.

Headquartered in Newton, NJ, Thorlabs has grown to over Approximately 2,300 employees with manufacturing and sales offices in the United States, United Kingdom, Germany, France, Sweden, Japan, China, and Brazil. As light-based technologies push into new markets, Thorlabs plans to enter early with the products and services required to ensure the ultimate success of our customers.

Job Description

This position is responsible for the fabrication of precision spherical and aspherical optical elements using established procedures and processes. Items include but are not limited to Lenses, Windows, Mirrors etc. made from specialty glasses and/or crystals. This position is also responsible for training of other optics manufacturing technicians. Although the location of the position is in Newton, NJ, from time to time it may be required to undertake duties at other Thorlabs locations.


Essential Job Functions  include the following, but are not limited to:

  • Cleaning, handling, and packaging of precision optical components.
  • Inspects all work before passing on to the next operations and/or to inventory using traditional and advanced metrology tools like microscopes, interferometers, micrometers, and test plates.
  • Complies with safety regulations and maintains clean and orderly work areas.
  • Perform all aspects of CNC optical fabrication including grinding, polishing, post polishing, beveling, cleaning and inspection.
  • Works with supervisor to alleviate issues that would negatively affect production.
  • Understanding of various causes and mitigation of subsurface damage.
  • Understanding of various causes and mitigation of mid-spatial frequency errors.
  • Proficient in MIL-PRF-13830B and ISO10110 manufacturing standards.
  • Programming of CNC machines based on technical drawings.
  • Design machine tooling based on lens requirements.
  • Adept in various blocking techniques like pitch, wax, epoxy, WAMP and optical contacting.
  • Polish aspherical lenses in volume to 150nm RMS irregularity with 10-5 surface quality with less than 1% rejected annually.
  • Polish spherical lenses in volume to ?/10 PV irregularity with 10-5 surface quality with less than 1% rejected annually.


In addition to the essential functions and duties listed above, all positions are also responsible for:

  • Meeting company standards pertaining to quantity and quality of work performed on an ongoing basis, performing all work-related tasks in a manner that is in compliance with all Company policies and procedures.
  • Adhering to Company policies, procedures, and directives regarding standards of workplace behavior in completing job duties and assignments.

The Company retains the right to change or assign other duties to this position.


Physical Activities:


Must grasp, manipulate, or assemble parts and components that are often very small. As a result, Technicians should have a steady hand and good hand-eye coordination to not only assemble but grind and precisely place pieces. Work may be sedentary, could stand or sit for long durations and/or perform repetitious work at times. Individual may exert up to 10 lbs. of force occasionally. Some Technicians may come into contact with potentially harmful chemicals or fumes, but ventilation systems normally minimize any harmful effects. Technicians may come in contact with but not limited to acetone and epoxy, and their work cell areas may be noisy at times.


Thorlabs values its diverse environment and is proud to be an Equal Employment Opportunity/Affirmative Action employer. All qualified individuals will receive consideration for employment without regard to race, color, religion, gender, gender identity or expression, sexual orientation, national origin, genetics, disability, age or veteran status. Job descriptions are not intended as and do not create employment contracts. The organization maintains its status as an at-will employer. Employees can be terminated for any reason not prohibited by law.



Job Requirements



  • 3 years minimum experience in CNC Machining of precision optical components is preferred
  • 5-10 years minimum experience in conventional optics manufacturing
  • Manual Machine shop milling and turning experience is a plus
  • Understand all aspects of blue prints



  • High School diploma or equivalent required, AA or BA/BS degree is desirable


Specialized Knowledge and Skills:

  • Good manual dexterity
  • Proficient math skills
  • Ability to follow directions
  • Good communication skills
  • Blue print reading
  • Analytical troubleshooting / problem solving
  • Basic computer skills, including familiarity and use of Microsoft Office applications
  • Decision making
  • Good hand / eye coordination



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