Senior Life Support Engineer

Senior Life Support Engineer

National Aquarium //
Baltimore, MD //
Posted on: October 12, 2021 //
Application Information: Interested and engaged applicants should apply through our website. Requests for reasonable accommodation can be made by e-mailing [email protected]

General Purpose: Responsible for the daily operations, coordinating the schedules and tasks of the engineers and overseeing the training for assistant engineers. Coordinates with Facilities staff, Capital Planning and outside contractors working in the life support areas. The Sr. Engineer provides hands-on support for all life support procedures as needed as well as monitors equipment maintenance and special projects/problem-solving. Responsible for monitoring and maintaining water levels, back washing large sand filters, monitoring/adjusting air flow and ozone generator adjustments and all other equipment vital to the operation of life support systems as directed by the Director of Life Support

The National Aquarium is committed to diversity and invites individuals who bring a diversity of culture, experience and ideas to apply.


Recently named one of Baltimore’s Best Places to Work, the National Aquarium opened in 1981 as a nonprofit aquatic education and conservation organization, the jewel of the city’s Inner Harbor redevelopment. SmartCEO Magazine honored the National Aquarium with the Healthiest Workplace award and the Corporate Culture award in 2016. With a mission to inspire conservation of the world’s aquatic treasures, the Aquarium is consistently ranked one of the nation’s two top aquariums and has hosted over 51 million guests since opening.

Today, the National Aquarium builds on a 40-year history of local, regional and global conservation initiatives that provide real solutions for protecting marine life, ecosystems and aquatic communities. Its Animal Rescue team has rescued, rehabilitated and released hundreds of marine mammals and endangered sea turtles throughout the Mid-Atlantic region. Its Animal Welfare and Science teams participate in important research efforts to confront pressing ocean conservation issues and advocate for smarter policies at local, state and federal levels. Through education, research, conservation action and advocacy, the National Aquarium is pursuing a vision to change the way humanity cares for our ocean planet.

Functions & Responsibilities

Essential Functions

  • Oversees and performs the tasks for operation of life support systems for the large aquarium habitats: Atlantic Coral Reef, Shark Alley, Black Tip Reef, Australia aquatic habitats and the Dolphin exhibit
  • Operation of large pumps, sand filters, protein skimmers, ozone contact, ozone generators, denitrification systems, gas exchangers, ORP, level, flow and other instrumentation, automated LSS computer monitoring and control, etc.
  • Ensures water transfers between Pier 3 and Pier 4 buildings
  • Monitor water levels in the exhibits and ensures they are maintained at proper level
  • Monitor and adjust tank temperatures per protocols
  • Preparation of artificial sea water
  • Evaluates the records for daily visual inspections of filter readings, valve positions, flow rates, and analog instrumentation
  • Monitor daily log sheet documentations; takes proactive measures to prevent problems
  • Log problems encountered per department protocol
  • Monitor readings and trends in automated LSS monitoring and control system, respond to notifications and make adjustments in conjunction with Manager and Director of Life Support, curatorial staff and
  • Inspect ozone generators, pumps, motors, blowers, chillers, and respond to problems
  • Measure salinity and residual oxidant levels as directed
  • Understand and instruct assistant engineers in the principles of biological, mechanical and chemical filtration
  • Perform ozone system adjustments

Other Duties & Responsibilities

Reporting: Reports to the Manager of Life Support for daily tasks and daily updating

Safety/Hazardous Materials: Complies with all safety protocols established by NA

Skills & Experience

Knowledge & Skills

Qualifications/Basic Job Requirements: College Degree preferred. Knowledge of water filtration, water chemistry, aquarium keeping and related life support equipment. Able to lift and carry 50 pounds, climb ladders, work nights and weekends as needed. Experience in coordinating multiple tasks/staff projects.

Competencies: Proficient with commonly used software (Outlook, Word, Excel, Trello, Metasys). Should have mechanical aptitude and logical problem-solving skills. Detail oriented and observant.

Problem Solving: Able to apply logic to tracing pipe lines, basic mechanical skills and equipment maintenance

Human Relations: Interacts with LS engineers, Animal Care and Welfare staff (aquarists, marine mammal trainers, curators) on a daily basis

Accountability: Honesty and open communication is essential

Human Resources: Non-supervisory position

Job Requirements

Physical Requirements

These are physical and mental requirements of the position as it is typically performed. Inability to meet one or more of these physical or mental requirements will not automatically disqualify a candidate or employee from the position. Upon request for a reasonable accommodation, the Company may be able to adjust or excuse one or more of these requirements, depending on the requirement, the essential functions to which it relates, and the proposed accommodation.

  • Seeing
  • Color Perception (Red, Green, Amber)
  • Hearing/Listening
  • Clear Speech
  • Touching (Dexterity, Hand and Finger)
  • Ability to Move Distances within and between offsite buildings
  • Climbing
  • Pushing/Pulling
  • Lifting and carrying (specify) (up to 50 pounds)
  • Other: basic swimming
  • Driving (local)

Working Conditions

Work Environment:

  • Shift work
  • Works with Others
  • Verbal Contact w/Others X Pressurized Equipment X Face-to-Face Contact
  • Moving Objects
  • Noise
  • Fumes/Odors
  • Mechanical Equipment
Salary & Benefits