Industrial Equipment Mechanic
Department Of Agriculture - Wyndmoor, PA

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Find Solutions to Agricultural Problems that Affect Americans Every Day, From Field to Table

The position is located in The Scale-up, Process and Economic Research (SUPER) Group, Eastern Regional Research Center, Wyndmoor, PA. The mission of the Unit is to enable the conversion of agricultural crops, crop residues, food and crop processing byproducts, dedicated energy crops, and agricultural wastes into economically and environmentally sustainable bio-fuels and value-added co-products. The incumbent will serve as an Industrial Equipment Mechanic for the thermo chemical conversion group.

This position requires the selectee to undergo a pre-employment check and a full background investigation. Any offer made is considered a tentative job offer pending the outcome of the pre-employment check. Retention in the position is based upon a favorable adjudication of the background investigation. The incumbent will be subject to periodic reinvestigations.

Physical Requirements:
Work involves walking, standing, stooping, kneeling, crawling and bending. Work is frequently done in uncomfortable positions or in cramped areas. It consists of lifting, placing and joining various parts of systems that require continuous stretching, reaching and other tiring movements. Heavy parts of systems, as well as equipment, weighing as much as 45 pounds, are carried, lifted or set up. Hoists and hydraulic lifts are used when removing or replacing large units.

Supplemental Questionnaire: Applicants will be required to complete a supplemental questionnaire. The questionnaire IS ATTACHED. Applicants who fail to complete and return the questionnaire WILL NOT receive further consideration for the position. TRAVEL REQUIRED

You must be a U.S. Citizen to apply for this position
Suitable for Federal employment, determined by a background investigation
Males born after 12/31/59 must be registered with Selective Service DUTIES:

Duties include, but are not limited to the following:
The incumbent will lay out, install, align, repair, modify, and maintain chemical process equipment; auxiliary equipment and support structures used in the Food Processing or Industrial Pilot Plant and associated laboratories. The equipment used will cover a broad range of batch and continuous type equipment in the food processing, industrial production and pollution control areas of pilot plant research. A variety of driers and dehydrators, VSV processing, comminuting equipment, various evaporators, compressors, centrifuges, filters and presses will be used in accomplishing work assignments. The equipment used will vary in size from bench scale to commercial production models. Milling, turning, threading, grinding, cutting, welding, as well as other general hand and power tools are used in the accomplishment of the work.

Working Conditions:
The work is performed in a machine shop and a pilot plant. The shop is not air conditioned, and the pilot plant conditions are often warm and humid in Summer and cold in Winter. Safety glasses must always be worn in both areas and appropriate safety goggles, gloves etc. worn for particular activities such as welding, grinding or machining. There are occasional malodorous or noisy periods of experimentation or construction.

Physical Examination Is Required.

Basic Requirements:
Applicants must have experience and/or training of sufficient scope and quality to perform the duties required. Applicants will be rated in accordance with their knowledge and skill in the job elements listed below.

1. Ability to do the work of an industrial equipment mechanic without more than normal supervision. (This is the screen-out element. Applicants who are not rated satisfactory on the screen-out element will not be rated on the remaining elements.)
2. Knowledge of industrial equipment, assembly, installation, repair, etc.
3. Ability to interpret instructions, specifications, etc, (including blueprints reading)
4. Ability to use and maintain tools and equipment.

5. Troubleshooting.

Additional Requirements:

SUPPLEMENTAL QUESTIONNAIRE: All applicants are required to complete the supplemental questionnaire found below. Applicants who fail to complete and return the questionnaire with their other application materials will not receive further consideration.


Vacancy Announcement #: ARS-X14E-0017


This includes the ability to work independently, make decisions, plan operations, show job responsibility, exhibit independence, exercise initiative, etc.

1A. From the descriptions below, choose the letter beside the statement that best describes the highest level of experience that you posses that demonstrates your ability to perform the duties of an Industrial Equipment mechanic without more than normal supervision. Select only one letter.

A. I have completed vocational training in trades relevant to fabricating, modifying, and repairing process or similar industrial equipment.

B. I have experience performing the work of an Industrial Equipment Mechanic under normal supervision operating machine tools repairing and fabricating process or industrial equipment with some emphasis on tolerances.

C. I have experience performing the work of an Industrial Equipment Mechanic under normal supervision having operated machine tools in the production or repair of equipment to close tolerances. I have direct work experience using these tools fabricating Stainless Steel and mild steel.

D. I have experience performing the full range of duties of an Industrial Equipment Mechanic. I am consulted by other workers because of my expertise performing a full range of equipment operation duties such as machining, and fabricating stainless steel. I am well versed in all machine shop practices including turning, milling, welding, cutting, assembling, grinding, and finishing.

____ Response 1a

1B. Use the numbers below to describe your highest level of experience in the following areas:

1.- Advanced Journeyman/Expert Professional

2.- Journeyman

3.- Somewhat Experienced

4.- Limited Experience

5.- Trainee/Apprentice

6.- No Experience





ELEMENT 2-E. Knowledge of Industrial Equipment, Assembly, Installation, Repair, etc.

Choose the number below that best describes your experience level

a) I have not installed, maintained or repaired any equipment.

b) I have experience with planned maintenance of industrial equipment.

c) I have experience with installation, maintenance and repair of equipment where there are clear procedures.

d) I have experience with the installation, maintenance and repair of equipment where procedures or documentation are not available. In some cases replacement parts were not available and had to be made.

e) I have experience installing, maintaining, and repairing prototype equipment where procedures and documentation are not available, and configurations are not always known. I have experience reverse engineering to repair machines that are not commercial or documented.

____ Response


This includes the ability to plan and layout work using blueprints, drawings or other specifications to determine dimensions, and specific requirements associated with the installation and operation of various types of equipment.

3A. Choose the letter below that best describes your experience level:

a) I am not comfortable following drawings, specifications, tolerances associated with fabricating equipment and machining components.

b) I can work with fractional dimensions on fabrication drawings to 1/16” tolerances.

c) I can work with fractional dimensions to 1/64” on fabrication drawings and decimal tolerances to .030” on machine parts. I have some background in the symbols found on fabrication drawings.

d) I can work with fractional dimensions to 1/64” on fabrication drawings and decimal tolerances to .001” on machine parts. I am experienced with the fabrication of mating, moving part assemblies. I am well versed in drawing symbols for on fabrication drawings.

e) I can work machining and assembling complex assemblies with tolerances of .001” or closer. I am fully versed in drawing symbols including welding and surface finishes. I am knowledgeable in following electrical and control drawings.

____ Response

3B. Use the numbers below to describe your highest level of experience with the following:

1- Have not used

2- Used with assistance from others

3- Used independently

4- Considered expert and have provided instruction to others



____Technical manuals

____Part diagrams

Element 81: Ability to Use and Maintain Tools and Equipment.

For each tool and/or measuring instrument below, write the number that best describes your experience and/or training (more than one may apply).

1 - Able to use
2 - Able to repair
3 - Able to maintain
4 - Considered as technical expert in the use, repair and maintain of the tool

5 - Have never used

__________ Use the common tools associated with mechanical systems, welding, electrical systems, and shop equipment.
__________ Use of voltmeters, ammeters, tachometers, and millimeters
__________ Repair of electrical motors and controllers
__________ Experience with turning machines
__________ Experience with milling machines


This includes the ability to find the causes of problems and to determine the extent of needed repair or adjustment.

5A. Choose the letter below that best describes your abilities in troubleshooting Industrial equipment.

a) I have no experience troubleshooting equipment.

b) I have some experience troubleshooting mechanical systems.

c) I have some experience troubleshooting mechanical and piping systems.

d) I have experience listed in b above and experience troubleshooting tools of the trade including welding equipment, grinders, and shop equipment.

e) I have experience listed in d above, and experience troubleshooting electrical systems.

____ Response

5B. Check the response that describes your work situations:
___Under close supervision, follow specific instructions.

___Follows work orders and guidance from manufacturers’ repair manual, and specifications.

___Independently interprets and applies manufacturers’ repair manual and technical specifications, drawings, and diagnostic codes.

___Use judgment and experience to solve complex problems.

___Provides guidance and instruction to others on the full range of specifications, tools, and testing equipment.

All qualification requirements must be met by the closing date of this vacancy announcement.

Applicants must be available to report for duty at the time a selection is made. Selections are typically made within 30 days of the closing date of the announcement.

The Agricultural Research Service uses a category rating process. Based on evaluation of all written materials submitted in application for the position, you will be determined to be Ineligible if you do not meet eligibility and/or minimum qualifications criteria; Eligible if you meet all eligibility and minimum qualifications criteria; OR Quality if you meet quality criteria in addition to eligibility and minimum qualifications criteria. BENEFITS:

The Federal government offers a number of exceptional benefits to its employees. The following link provides an overview of the benefits currently offered to Federal employees: .

Status candidates who wish to be considered under both alternative merit promotion and non-status competitive examining must submit two complete applications when the position is open to both status and non-status candidates. When only one application is received, it will be considered under alternative merit promotion procedures.

Displaced/Surplus Employees: Individuals eligible under the USDA Career Transition Assistance Program (CTAP) or the Interagency Career Transition Assistance Program (ICTAP) must be well qualified for the position to receive consideration for special priority selection. CTAP and ICTAP eligibles within the local commuting area will be considered well qualified if they meet basic eligibility requirements and all selective factors, and are rated in the Quality Category as described in the How You Will Be Evaluated section. Employees seeking CTAP/ICTAP eligibility must submit a copy of the agency notice, a copy of their most recent performance rating and a copy of their most recent SF-50 noting current position, grade level and duty location. Click here for additional information on CTAP and ICTAP.

F inancial Disclosure Requirement : Federal employees are subject to prohibitions against officially dealing with outside organizations in which they have a financial interest. If hired for this position, you may be required to submit a financial disclosure report within 30 days of the effective date of your appointment and annually thereafter.

Reasonable Accommodation: If you need a reasonable accommodation for any part of the application and hiring process, or have questions regarding reasonable accommodation and/or accessibility for any part of the application and hiring process, please contact the Disability Program Manager on 202-720-6161 or through the DC Relay Service on 202-855-1234 (TDD).

False statements: If you make a false statement in any part of your application, you may not be hired; may be fired after beginning work; or may be fined or jailed. - 15 months ago - save job
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