Robotics Position in Hawaii

Job Description

Makai’s Subsea Technology Group is looking for a Robotics and Test Engineer with strong analytical skills and domain knowledge in robotics, autonomous systems, physics, or engineering.

Candidates should have demonstrated ability working with ROS/ROS2, implementing real-time software to monitor and control autonomous systems, and experience performing and setting up continuous integration processes to conduct automated testing of algorithms and software products. Candidate will become a key member working on a team with collaborative engineers developing innovative solutions for both Commercial and Department of Defense (DoD) applications.

The successful candidate will work in a collaborative, multi-disciplinary engineering and testing environment with real-time software, and autonomous systems. Projects will include the development and testing of data processing and control software of remote, autonomous subsea robotics systems, as well as defining and implementing continuous integration processes for testing software and algorithms using playback and/or synthetically generated data.

The ideal candidate should have a strong interest in robotic systems and data analysis, demonstrated software, firmware or algorithm experience, and be energized by working on challenging, cross-disciplinary problems.

This is a permanent, full-time, in-person position in Waimanalo, Hawaii. See an aerial video of our location here.


  • Design, modify, debug, and test real-time control system software using C, C++, Python, FORTRAN and other programming languages targeting Linux and Windows operating systems, as well as embedded operating systems;
  • Interface hardware and software systems with in-house, 3rd party, and Government systems;
  • Develop and document software APIs and user interfaces;
  • Review technical datasheets for sensors, actuators, and microcontrollers and implement drivers for them.
  • Utilize data processing software programs and write custom scripts to analyze software and algorithm performance against objectives, identify issues, generate insights, and produce plots and other graphical outputs to communicate findings to stakeholders both internal and external to Makai.
  • Support the specification of test plans and setup and maintain continuous integration processes to automate the building and testing of software products.
  • Periodically support offsite testing of software in both laboratory and off-shore settings.
  • Organize reports and give presentations to communicate results internally to team members and externally to customers.

Minimum applicant requirements include:

  • Possession of a graduate degree (M.S. or higher) in a STEM related discipline (Physics, Mathematics, Statistics, Computer Science, Electrical Engineering, Physical Oceanography, or similar) with 2+ years of relevant experienced, or possession of a Bachelor’s degree (B.S.) in the above and 5+ years of experience.
  • Strong proficiency using Python and data analysis libraries.
  • Strong proficiency using C/C++. Additional proficiency in FORTRAN and CI/CD tools such as Jenkins or GitLab is a big plus.
  • Experience with the Robot Operating System (ROS/ROS2) framework.
  • High degree of intellectual curiosity, willingness to learn new technical skills and flexibility to support innovative projects that may be initially “out of your comfort zone”.
  • Organized approach to developing and executing test processes for software programs.
  • Demonstrated ability to both work collaboratively within a multidisciplinary team as well as independently.
  • Strong written and verbal communication skills including writing reports and presenting to internal and external stakeholders.
  • Are willing and able to travel periodically (~4-6 weeks per year) to attend meetings or conduct tests and at facilities on the mainland USA or on vessels in port or at-sea.
  • Either already live on Oahu or be willing to relocate to Oahu to work in-person at Makai’s offices in Waimanalo, HI.
  • Possession of U.S. citizenship is required.
  • Either already possess or are able to obtain a Department of Defense security clearance. Applicants with clearances that are active or were previously held and currently in good standing are preferred.

Additional desirable qualifications include:

  • Most of Makai’s work is in the ocean or is marine related. Therefore, ocean experience or background (commercially and/or recreationally) is desirable.
  • Experience simulating robotic systems with Gazebo, Nvidia Isaac or similar is a plus.
  • Demonstrated experience with the Agile Software Development process.
  • Strong understanding of feedback control systems;
  • Experience with analog, digital, and serial electronic sensor selection and integration is highly desirable;
  • Experience selecting, integrating and testing electrical, pneumatic and/or hydraulic actuators is desired.
  • Previous experience working in a dynamic, fast-paced environment.
  • You enjoy being in, on or near the ocean.

Candidates with many of the above qualifications will be most highly considered.

Makai provides engineers and scientists with interesting and challenging projects, a competitive salary, full health and dental coverage, company matching retirement plans, excellent comp time and vacation policies, a dynamic and innovative company culture, and a beautiful and unique work atmosphere. Watch a video of Makai’s Oahu offices here:

Makai participates in the Department of Homeland Security “E-Verify” Employment Eligibility Verification system for all new employees. All qualified applicants will receive consideration for employment without regard to race, color, religion, sex, sexual orientation, gender identity, or national origin.

How to Apply
To apply for this position, please email the following two documents to Hermann Kugeler at

  1. Comprehensive Resume including your overall GPA in graduate and undergraduate studies, year(s) of graduation, current location, and U.S. citizenship status.
  2. Cover Letter highlighting how your education, experience and training relevant to this position and why you want to work for Makai Ocean Engineering, Inc.