Principle Manufacturing Engineer

Employer: Reaction Engines Ltd.
Job location
Culham Science Centre - Culham (Abingdon)
Job salary
Circa £70,000 dependent on experience
Job term
Job closing date

Do you aspire to be the next Rob Peesley or Dan Kay? Reaction Engines have the exciting opportunity for an experienced vacuum brazing Engineer to become a key member of our Manufacturing Engineering team and define the process development of our world class heat exchangers.

The role will provide subject matter technical expertise across all vacuum brazed products from low MRL/TRL studies to continuous improvement on production products. The right candidate will have in-depth knowledge of vacuum brazing to further advance our internal know how and IP.

The candidate will have a methodical mindset with an emphasis on process stability and work well with all key stakeholders including but not limited to (technicians, designers, materials, engineering project leads as well as their own function). They will have a teamwork-based approach and take others on the journey from feasibility, verification, qualification and continuous improvement as well as input into project gate reviews (PDR,CDR,MRR).

The successful candidate will have full responsibility for our vacuum furnace plant at REL ensuring all monitoring, PPM and best practice activities are taking place as well as be able to support future NADCAP accreditation, and further expansion of our capabilities.


The role will be hands on, but you will also be required at times to present internally to the Executive leadership team, as well as support on-site visits where you will be able to comfortably engage with senior government officials and agencies, future investors and current shareholders.


The role has the option of two current work patterns:

07:00-15:00 Mon-Fri with a 1hour lunch

07:00-16:15 Mon-Thu/ Tue-Fri with a 30minute lunch

Future expansion of projects may require additional shift patterns as well as extended periods at additional sites.

Key responsibiities and accountabilities:

  • Work with design, manufacturing and performance engineers to design for thermal processing including heat treatment and vacuum brazing.
  • Work with cross-functional teams that are responsible for selecting materials, manufacturing processes, and suppliers to produce world class hardware.
  • “Own” the REL vacuum furnace plant ensuring it remains world class.
  • Identify and apply mature state-of-the-art processes to manufacturing, and develop process control documentation and quality assurance measures
  • Develop new processes to solve challenging problems, including joining, coatings and heat treatment.
  • Train operators in all aspects of thermal processing and equipment usage and maintenance.
  • Establish develop and maintain effective working relationships with all work colleagues, contractors and partnering agencies to ensure an integrated contribution to Reaction Engines’ corporate objectives
  • Observe and comply with all company policies and procedures and for Health and Safety at Work
  • Observe and continually promote equal opportunities and customer care in compliance with organisational aims and objectives.
  • Participate in learning and development activities that develop personal effectiveness and assist in improving performance in the role.
  • Undertake any other duties as may reasonably be required in line with the level of responsibility of the post and in order to meet the changing needs of the organisation



  • 5+ years’ experience in thermal processing (specifically vacuum brazing).
  • Experience working with at least one of the following:
    • Materials/ stress teams to design, test, and document thermal processes for critical hardware
    • Design engineers to specify braze joints designs, braze alloy selection (Ni and precious metal base), and process development
  • Experience processing materials including stainless steel, copper, nickel and cobalt alloys, and titanium alloys
  • Experience with post process testing such as hardness, metallography, mechanical testing and NDT.
  • Development of detailed work procedures.
  • Strong interpersonal and organisational skills with the ability to prioritise and handle small and large projects with escalating priorities.
  • In-depth understanding of materials/ process relationships for the design of custom thermal treatments
  • Knowledge of fixturing strategies to reduce dimensional distortion


  • 10+ years’ experience in thermal processing (specifically vacuum brazing).
  • Experience on low MRL/TRL proof of concepts through to production
  • Process qualification to BS/ISO, NADCAP, ASME.
  • Cross-sector experience such as: aerospace, energy, vacuum sciences, automotive.

Qualification Requirements


  • Batchelor degree in materials science and engineering, mechanical engineering, chemical engineering or related field; or 10+ years’ experience.

Other information

This role attracts a competitive salary and excellent company benefits including:

  • 28 days annual leave (increasing to 30 days after 2 years’ service) plus public holidays,
  • employee share scheme,
  • employer matching company pension scheme,
  • life assurance
  • contribution towards onsite nursery childcare for children under 3 years of age.

Salary: Circa £70,000 dependent on experience

Contract: Permanent

To apply: