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Scientists/Engineers/Analysts - Underwater Group (UWG)

Defence Science and Technology Laboratory
Fareham, UK
Closing date
23 Apr 2023

Job Details

Job summary

We are Dstl, Underwater Group and we’re recruiting up to 14 Scientists/Engineers, Analysts and IT Administrators.

The Reason

If you enjoy working with complex systems, have an appetite for problem solving and a desire to understand how things work, join us in the quest to make the UK a Science and Technology Superpower.

The Defence Science and Technology Laboratory (Dstl) is the science, technology and engineering arm of the UK’s Ministry of Defence.

Underwater Group (UWG) of Dstl is recruiting up to 14 Engineers, Scientists,Analysts and IT Administrators to meet the challenges and requirements of the ‘Integrated Defence and Security Review’. We are ideally looking for those with an interest and experience in Underwater Science, Acoustics and Sonar. We are looking for Systems Engineers, Scientists, RF Communication Engineers, Software and System Engineers and IT Administrators. You’ll join a world class team of 100 staff supporting “UK Defence & Security”.

The Group is made up of 5 capability teams with the following vacancies:

UW Acoustic Analysis Team - Acoustic Analyst (1 Post)

UW Combat Systems Team - Combat Systems Scientist (1 Post), Acoustic Systems Analyst & Data Scientist (2 Posts)

UW Enablers Team - RF Engineer/Physicist (1 Post), Military Diving & Systems Specialist (2 Posts)

UW Sensing Team - Underwater Domain Scientist (3 Posts)

Special Fit Team - Electronic Warfare Engineer (1 Post), IT Administrator (1 Post), Systems Engineer (1 Post), Research Scientist (1 Post)

Job description

“Support the Underwater Fighting Force”

Successful applicants will be contributing to projects such as:

  • Research and evaluation of the latest maritime technology systems, platforms or vehicles;
  • Design and testing next generation sonar systems;
  • Integrating cutting edge technologies onto Future Command Systems. Including human machine interface considerations to optimise future command and control;
  • Assessing novel concepts and demonstrate crewed and un-crewed platform teaming concepts;
  • Acoustic systems analysis and data scientists to develop the next generation of tools to analyse surface and sub-surface threats;
  • Assessing the trade-offs between crewed and un-crewed platforms and potentially develop algorithms to allow for autonomous operation. Are Autonomous and AI the way to go?;
  • Design and prototype the next generation of maritime threats within the underwater battlespace;
  • Test technologies and techniques that make lab-based representations of real-world systems using your technical experience in Digital Signal Processing and Field Programmable Gate Arrays;
  • Engage in the Future Underwater RF communications systems technologies;
  • Stealthy designs and technologies: Consider novel techniques to hide military platforms and improve their survivability;
  • Understanding the increasingly complex threat environment, to develop User and System level requirements to integrate sensors and countermeasures to optimise intelligent platform responses.

We recognise the unique skills and aspirations of our employees and are able to present them with an unparalleled range of opportunities to develop both the UK’s military capabilities and themselves.

Person specification

You have me intrigued! How can I apply? Click on the Apply Now button and tell us all about you! Once you’re on the ‘inside’ we can tell you so much more….

We are recruiting Scientists, Engineers and Analysts with experience or an interest in developing knowledge in the following subject areas:

  • Autonomous Systems;
  • Combat Systems trials planning and execution;
  • Data Analysis;
  • Engineering (Radio Frequency, Electronic Warfare, Software, Systems, Electrical);
  • Military Maritime Platforms;
  • Underwater Environment;
  • Underwater sensors;
  • Underwater Vehicles – Crewed/Un-crewed;
  • UW Weapons;
  • Non specialist: If you have a STEM degree, an interest or experience in Defence, Science and Technology and you can’t see what interests you above, please apply and we can try and match you to the best opportunity.  Please check the attached Job Profiles for more information about the specific requirements.

Important Information

Our work in defence, security and intelligence requires our employees to be UK Nationals who are able to gain a high level of security clearance to undertake the projects we are involved in to protect us from security threats. For this reason, only UK Nationals will be able to apply for this role. If you are an international or dual-national candidate, and you think you have the skills we need, please consider applying to any of our government, security or defence partners.

This role will require full UK security clearance and you should have resided in the UK for the past 5 years. For some roles Developed Vetting will also be required, in this case you should have resided in the UK for the past 10 years.

Work location

Dstl is strongly encouraging blended and flexible working either at one of our sites or from home or both. We want to empower you to undertake your duties at the most appropriate location for the task, however you will be allocated a Dstl site as a base. You may be required to travel to other Dstl and MoD sites as required


We’ll assess you against these behaviours during the selection process:

  • Leadership;
  • Communicating and Influencing;
  • Working Together;
  • Delivering at Pace.

Technical skills

We’ll assess you against these technical skills during the selection process:

  • Please state which Capability Team post/posts you are interested in?
  • Provide an example of a technical challenge you have overcome and how you approached solving it.


Dstl’s full range of great benefits can be found in the information pack which includes:

Financial: An excellent pension scheme starting from 26% employer contribution (find out more here). In Year Rewarding Achievement bonuses and thank you vouchers. Rental deposit scheme and cycle to work scheme.

Flexible working: Full flexibility working options include alternative working patterns, compressed hours, job shares and annualised hours. Remote working may be available dependent on role and the classification of the work you will do.

Flexible working hours: Ability to bank hours in a 12 month reference period including the ability to accrue and use 3 days per calendar month.

Annual leave: 25 days pro rata (rising to 30 after 5 years) plus 8 public holidays with the ability to buy/sell 5 additional days per annum.

Family: Maternity, adoption or shared parental leave of up to 26 weeks with full pay, an additional 13 weeks statutory pay and a further 13 weeks unpaid

Learning and Development: Dstl encourages and supports charterships, accreditations and provides employees access to fully funded apprenticeships up to level 7 (Masters Degree). Dstl will pay for 2 memberships with relevant bodies/institutions. Employees also have access to Civil Service Learning.

Facilities: Onsite parking, EV Charging points, restaurants, cafés and gyms.

The information pack can be found attached to the job specification on Civil Service Jobs.

Our Diversity Networks

We have a number of support networks to ensure all employees feel supported at work. These include the following:

  • Sexual Orientation and Gender Identity Network;
  • Race, Faith and Culture Network;
  • Parents and Carer Support Network;
  • Alternative Working Network;
  • Gender Equality Network;
  • New Starters Network;
  • Enabled Network, for people with visible and non-visible disabilities.



DSTL profile imageThe Defence Science and Technology Laboratory (Dstl) is the science and technology arm of the Ministry of Defence. As part of the UK Government we do sensitive and specialist work that cannot be done anywhere else. We’re dedicated to keeping the UK safe and secure by using world-leading science and technology. Our work has one aim – protecting lives. Our experts make innovative scientific advancements, sometimes with international impact.

Why work for us
At Dstl, we bring together the best people with the best ideas and apply science and technology in unexpected ways. Our position in defence brings strong links to the armed forces, giving us access and insight to our military personnel and their operational challenges. The solutions we deliver cover everything from long-term research and analysis, through to rapid development in support of current operations with the potential to save lives. Working with other government departments, universities and businesses, we develop battle-winning technologies that support UK military operations – now and into the future.

At Dstl, you’ll find a workforce of respected scientists and professionals who specialize in many different disciplines. We value and champion collaboration, impact and innovation, and we work with some of the most talented professionals and academics in the world. To achieve our goals, we promote and support the use of flexible working patterns to enable staff to enjoy a healthy work/life balance.

We’re always looking for the best technical and scientific minds who are looking for a career with a difference. You’ll need a relevant qualification, a flair for solving problems and a passion for new technologies. Above all, you must want to make a difference now and in the future.

Training and development
We offer an extensive range of technical and professional training that’s relevant for your career and your future ambitions, delivered both in-house and externally. We’ll support you with Chartership and accreditation, and fund up to two professional memberships for you each year.

What we are looking for
Launch your career at Dstl as a:

  • Graduate: if you join Dstl as a graduate you will put theory into practise, applying what you’ve learnt to the real-world problems that we’re solving right now. You will be contributing to important projects and supported by mentors and leading scientists.
  • Student: we have 12- or three-month internships available to experience what a career in science means.
  • Apprentice: we offer apprenticeships, up to degree level, giving you the chance to earn while you learn.

We have a variety of roles advertised on our website all year round as well as graduate and apprenticeship opportunities.

UK; Porton Down (Salisbury, Wiltshire), Portsdown West (Fareham, Hampshire)

Number of employees

Positions recently recruited for
Graduate engineer, graduate scientist, graduate statistician, graduate operational researcher and analyst, graduate project manager, analysts, scientist, engineer, cyber, software

Desired degree disciplines/class
A STEM degree

UK national and eligibility to work in the UK (for security clearance purposes)

How to apply
Apply online at and search for Dstl

Closing date
All year round. Graduate and apprenticeships recruitment every autumn/winter

Tel +44 (0)1980 950000

Find Us
+44 (0)1980 618484
Room G01 Building
5 Porton Down

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