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Principal, Robotics & Automation Engineer

GE Appliances, A Haier Company

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Posted on 07/25/2022

Location

USA, Louisville, KY

Description

The GE Appliances Robotics Principal AME (Advanced Manufacturing Engineer) will play a high visibility, leader role in furthering our robotic automation strategy by using their successful development and implementation experience in cutting-edge robotic automation applications including 3D Vision and cage-less safety. Work will include building robotic solutions that improve manufacturing quality, quantity and productivity. The Principal is also responsible for managing and executing electrical, robotic & automation equipment projects, ensuring all procured or modified equipment is compliant with standards.

Major Duties & Responsibilities

  • As a Principal Engineer, you will be expected to manage multiple projects and/or provide leadership for larger equipment control projects.  Must be able to analyze needs and determine best recommendations for equipment / process to optimize cost & performance.
  • Act as a key liaison between the project team and the plant operation and manufacturing teams; ensuring that plant priorities and objectives are clearly understood and considered for the area under their ownership.
  • Provide advanced automation robotic, electrical and controls expertise in leading detailed and comprehensive planning for conceptualization, specification, development and implementation of right-sized manufacturing and facility equipment. 
  • Serve as primary technical expert to investigate and drive the development of robotic, electrical, controls and safety equipment standards for all equipment. 
  • Responsibilities can extend across all areas of manufacturing and warehouse facilities.
  • When assigned to New Product Introduction (NPI) programs and/ or Run the Plant (RTP) projects drive product cost out and improve factory productivity. 
  • Responsible in providing a supportable, reliable infrastructure for manufacturing systems and ensure all national codes and regulations are met.
  • Deliver guidance, mentoring, training and leadership for more junior engineers and/or cross-functional team members with regard to robot, electrical, safety circuits and control equipment design and execution.
  • Utilize technical and project experience to add to the Test and Control AME teams’ body of knowledge to drive continuous improvement throughout the organization and company.
  • Lead advanced manufacturing engineering activities in support of NPI, TCO, and LEAN.
  • Investigate new technologies (special emphasis on robots, robotic tooling/ fixturing and controls) for appliance manufacturing and recommend applicable new technologies to business leaders.
  • Participate within Production Preparation Process (3P) in developing manufacturing tooling, equipment and processes.  Utilize cross-functional groups to ensure that the tooling, equipment and processes are compatible with the entire value stream.  Efforts should include: right-sized equipment, workstation design, material presentation, standard work and single piece flow.  Use data and statistics to characterize delivered manufacturing process capabilities in qualifying the release of processes and equipment.
  • Work with factory operations and Lean teams to understand the Value Stream and how your projects impact this.  Ensure material flow, tooling setup, model mix, etc. are considered when equipment is designed.
  • Manage robotic, electrical and control portions of capital equipment expenditures that support new product designs, factory capacity or efficiency additions, and quality improvement goals (typical project scope involves the development of specifications, supplier management, purchase, installation and qualification of the Work with design team to ensure Design for Manufacturing & Assembly (DFMA) is considered within the product designs.
  • Comply with EHS and ergonomic requirements; utilize Human Organizational Performance (HOP) principles to ensure that all equipment / processes are implemented with the health and safety of the operators in mind. 
  • Develop mockups and prototypes to validate NPI designs and test designs within shop floor for confirmation.
  • Provide documentation and training to maintenance and shop floor personnel to ensure seamless new equipment introductions.
  • Troubleshoot and correct issues with equipment and processes.
  • Provide technical sourcing support as needed.

Minimum Skills & Abilities

Computer Literacy skills required

  • Familiar with at least one CAD package, preferably Solidworks, AutoCAD, ProE, Inventor and experienced with 3D additive printing
  • Comfortable with hands on in the lab assembling mechanical components and electronics, soldering boards, wiring connectors
  • Hands on experience with sensing technologies (e.g. sensors, camera 2D, 3D, LIDAR, IMU, encoder)

Vision:

  • Machine Vision –
  • Industry Traditional: Fanuc iR, Cognex, Keyence
  • Advanced Vision: OpenCV, Haclon, 2D, 3D.

Programming:

  • Experienced with coding Python, C#, VB
  • Algorithm prototyping and coding skills (Matlab/Python/C/C++/C# or VB.Net)
  • Solid understanding of Software Development Life Cycle (SDLC), Object Oriented Programming, Design Patterns

AI:

  • Understanding of Machine learning algorithms and applications
  • Deep Nets
  • Experience with Caffe, Torch, Tensorflow or OpenCV

Working Conditions

  • Working conditions are normal for a high volume manufacturing environment.
  • Work may involve lifting of materials and product up to 30 pounds and working in and around heavy equipment.
  • 20-30% travel may be for domestic and/or international travel to supplier sites/ plants, etc.
  • Hours & Weekends: Working off-shift and weekends will be required.
  • Working in this environment requires the use of safety equipment to include but not limited to; eye safety glasses, hearing protectors, work boots, and hardhats.
  • These roles will require frequent walking in a manufacturing plant environment.

Minimum Education & Experience

Qualifications / Requirements

  • 7+ years hands on & relevant robotic and controls engineering experience with electrical, automated manufacturing equipment and processes
  • Advanced Technical Degree
  • Practical, extensive FANUC and ABB robot mechanical, entire programming development, 3D vision guidance and line-tracking integrations, TCP (with urethane and/ or welding tool applications) setup, payload ID setup, DCS and Handling Tool expertise.
  • Practical, extensive FANUC Roboguide and ABB RobotStudio simulation expertise.
  • Experience implementing robot automation and electromechanical equipment procurement projects:  Including specification development, supplier selection, technical reviews, installation and qualification of equipment
  • Excellent project tracking and detailed planning skills required
  • Ability to work in large cross-functional teams and at multiple levels in the organization (both salaried and shop floor operators / skilled trades team members)
  • Good oral and written communication skills – will be expected to provide status report outs to cross-functional team and train other engineers to electrical standards
  • Demonstrated ability to take ownership of cross-functional program deliverables and ability to drive decisions based on the overall benefit to the company
  • Significant travel may be required- see working conditions.

Desired Characteristics

  • PhD Degree in Engineering, Electrical, Mechanical or Mechatronics Engineering is highly preferred
  • Prior work experience within OEM integrator of industrial robotic workstations.
  • Karel programming experience.
  • Working knowledge of controls software, PROFICY, RXLOGIX and SIMATIC or SIMOTION preferred, along with experience integrating Industrial Safety and Security  
  • Experience designing robot tooling & fixturing
  • Very creative talent with a proven ability to look past what is currently done and develop a practical, implementable vision for future electronic control systems with a strong history of executing to vision
  • Prior NPI program experience
  • Six Sigma Certification Green Belt, Black Belt, or Master Black Belt

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At GE Appliances, we make life better by designing and building the world's best appliances. From design to production to service, our goal is to help people improve their lives at home. We value teamwork, innovation, reliability, speed and, above all, a passion to help people. Each of our appliances is designed purposefully with our consumers in mind.

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