Polymer Scientist in Photovoltaics
SunPower Corporation - San Jose, CA

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Are you ready to change the future? You have the opportunity to join the company that helped establish solar markets around the world and continues to innovate in the renewable energy space. SunPower has facilities in the US, Europe and Asia, and we are seeking talented people to join us in building a clean energy future.

Widely recognized as the world’s standard for solar, SunPower produces the world’s highest efficiency solar products. Our quality and reliability standards far exceed those of any other company in the industry.

SunPower and Total, the global energy producer and provider, have announced a transformational investment by Total in SunPower. The companies have signed a set of strategic agreements to accelerate SunPower’s growth in the increasingly competitive solar sector. Total’s investment is based on SunPower’s leading position in designing, manufacturing and delivering the world’s highest efficiency, highest reliability solar systems with guaranteed performance. These agreements will accelerate SunPower’s growth and further improve its financial strength.

SunPower is committed to the success of our company, our employees and the communities around the world that need us most. We support our employees’ commitment to their communities through a culture of volunteerism, and through The SunPower Foundation, which makes grants to green initiatives throughout the world. As a company, we operate with the highest sustainability standards.

In an industry that is reshaping the world’s energy future, there’s no better place to be than SunPower.


The Modeling Engineer will contribute to research on next generation module technology platforms and their integration upstream (cells) and downstream (system). His/her mission will be to add to our understanding of stress correlation between i) wafer, cell and module materials and processing, ii) properties of packaging materials and iii) interaction of cell to module components, interconnects and others. The candidate will interface with other R&D groups at SunPower to define critical design parameters and controls for stress in modules, and his/her successful results will contribute directly to the development of next generation SunPower PV modules.

The candidate will benefit from working with a highly dynamic, international R&D team of excellent scientists, and be trusted with a large extent of autonomy. Furthermore, he/she will benefit from the advantages of being part of TOTAL, a major international company which provides employees with exciting career opportunities and a large number of benefits and advantages.
Roles and responsibilities
The main roles and responsibilities of the Modeling Engineer will be to:
  • Develop and implement simulation models for stress in SunPower modules that are able to predict stress behavior under various system conditions.
  • Leverage TOTAL capabilities for access to computing time and clusters equipment for advanced simulation methods.
  • Determine critical design factors for new module materials and processes to minimize stress in next generation crystalline silicon PV modules.
  • Contribute to managing third party academic collaborations.
  • Report to TOTAL R&D Headquarters in Paris, France, on project progress and results.
Candidate profile
For this position, TOTAL is seeking a Scientist with significant experience in modeling or simulation (in particular of mechanical stress) and some knowledge of PV technologies.

Educational background:
  • PhD in Computational Material Science, Mechanical Engineering, Stress Modeling, Physics, or a similar field.
Knowledge and experience:
  • Minimum 3 years of professional experience in stress modeling gained in a relevant industry (e.g. PV, automotive, electronic or MEMS).
  • Some experience in PV R&D.
  • Strong knowledge and know-how in mechanical simulation/modeling (stress) and Finite Element Analysis (FEA).
  • Some knowledge of ANSYS or similar software.
  • Experience with designing, conducting and managing the execution of test plans.
  • Experience in stress modeling for visco-elastic polymers.
  • Hands-on experience with electrical and mechanical characterization.
  • Experience with building test benches would be plus.
  • Polymeric material knowledge or experience in lamination processes for PV would be a plus.
Proven records of scientific achievements
  • Fluency in English.
Personal qualities
  • Strong analytical skills.
  • Capacity to think out-of-the box to develop innovative ideas.
  • Ability to plan, multi-task and set priorities based on technical and business input.
  • Able to work effectively in a high pace, world class global R&D environment.
  • Team work attitude and capacities.
  • Excellent communication skills: capacity to explain complex problems in a clear and understandable manner.
Equal Employment Opportunity

It is SunPower’s policy to provide equal employment opportunity to all applicants and employees. SunPower disapproves of, and will not tolerate, unlawful discrimination against any applicant or employee because of race, color, national origin or ancestry, gender (including pregnancy, childbirth, or related medical conditions), gender identity, age, religion, disability, family care status, veteran status, marital status, sexual orientation, or any other basis protected by local, state or federal laws.

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