Industrial Automation Engineer
Job Type

Industrial Automation Engineer

(Factory & Machine Automation)

Located in Peoria, Illinois, Natural Fiber Welding, Inc. (NFW) produces a scalable and sustainable universe of peerless high-performance materials created from abundant natural resources. NFW is driven by an entrepreneurial spirit and a desire to change the world for the better. Innovative ideas and the drive to commercialize new products is in our DNA. Our workforce is comprised of a team of scientists, engineers, and business leaders that are inspired to transition the materials world from being plastic-addicted to plant-powered. We are looking for exceptional talent who can contribute to our exciting, fast paced, venture-based, and rapidly growing organization. NFW will make a competitive compensation offer for this position based on candidates experience and what they bring to the table.

Do you have experience with electrical or mechanical process automation? NFW is currently seeking an Industrial Automation Engineer to join our growing engineering team. This position will be a key contributor to the success of implementing NFW’s next generation of Clarus® and Mirum® production machinery. Both Clarus® and Mirum® hold the key to displacing polluting synthetic textiles with high-performing natural alternatives that can be recycled. You now have the opportunity to apply your experience in a way that will make a positive tangible impact on the planet. The ideal candidate will either come from or be prepared to join a fast-to-failure, iterative development environment where every day will be spent solving real engineering challenges. We are specifically looking for automation control experience (i.e. PLCs, industrial sensors, actuators, motors, servos, and data acquisition) but additional mechanical design ability is a plus. A typical day for an engineer at NFW is split between the workstation CAD and the shop floor fabricating prototypes. NFW seeks candidates who enjoy getting their hands dirty. NFW will make a competitive compensation offer for this position based on candidates experience and what they bring to the table.

Apply today and see if our team is a fit!

You are an ideal candidate for this position if:

  • You enjoy and excel at getting your hands dirty in implementing designs for prototype systems, systems on their way to being production ready.
  • You want to be part of something truly unique and new. You want to help commercialize new technologies that are unproven but have a team dedicated to their success.
  • You thrive in making order and efficiency out of chaos.
  • You are self-starting but can take direction and receive constructive feedback.
  • You are an excellent communicator and team player across multiple disciplines spanning chemical engineers, polymer scientists, and business leaders.
  • You are passionate about environmental stewardship.

Key Responsibilities / What you will do:

  • Design and implement, along with a team of engineers, the next generation of yarn/fabric (Clarus®) and plant-based leather (Mirum®) production machinery.
  • Automate or improve existing manual processes though electrical and mechanical design.
  • Assist fellow engineers with prototypes that need controls and automation.
  • Directly discuss problems with operators and production managers to identify and develop labor-saving or product improving automation solutions.
  • Discuss projects with key stakeholders to establish underlying budget, scope, and timeline requirements.
  • Provide project cost and labor estimates prior to start of work for project evaluation.
  • Occasionally troubleshoot production problems related to machine automation.
  • Encourage safe work practices and apply appropriate lock-out procedures.


Qualifications /What you will bring:

  • Experience with PLC control panel design, documentation, and construction.
  • Familiarity with established electrical wiring and control practices (NFPA-70 / NEC, NFPA-79, NFPA-70E).
  • Ability to read, interpret, and apply established codes related to design (NFPA, OSHA, ASME)
  • Able to select appropriate industrial sensors and instrumentation (e.g. level control, inductive proximity sensors, pressure transducers) and actuators (e.g. pneumatic solenoids, pistons, motors)
  • Familiarity with 2D design software (AutoCAD LT preferred)
  • Ability to produce electrical schematics for both in-house fabricators and outside manufacturers.
  • Demonstrated hands-on experience with industrial scale factory automation projects.
  • Familiarity with basic hand and power tools.
  • Ability to implement and program programmable logic controllers (PLCs; AutomationDirect P1K, P2K, BRX and/or CLICK preferred) and human machine interfaces (HMIs; C-More preferred).
  • Ability to design on rapid, fast-to-failure, iterative development cycles in a research and pilot-scale production environment.
  • B.S. in Mechatronics, Mechanical, or Electrical Engineering or equivalent industry experience

Benefits / What NFW offers:

  • A competitive and comprehensive compensation package.
  • Agile and tight knit design and development team with fast turnarounds on design and implementation iterations. See your projects through from concept to fabrication to commercialization.
  • Rapid scale-up. NFW is quickly growing its manufacturing capabilities. Our teams have the resources they need to get the job done and are led by empathetic and skilled managers.
  • Close interaction with other engineering disciplines. Brainstorm and collaborate with Manufacturing, Mechanical, and Electrical engineers.
  • Frequent learning opportunities. Clarus® and Mirum® are industry disruptive technologies. Stretch your creativity by designing and implementing equipment without an established design precedent. You won't be re-implementing old ideas. You will be part of making something revolutionary, which will change a trillion dollar plus industry.

Physical Requirements:

The physical demands described here are representative of those that must be met by an employee to successfully perform the essential functions of this job.

  • Frequent talking, hearing and seeing
  • Frequent using of hands to grasp, handle, or feel
  • Regular standing, walking, sitting and reaching
  • You will be able to be on your feet up to 8 hours per day
  • You will be able to lift 75 lbs
  • You will be able to work safely and keep your work area clean.
  • You will share your findings in regular written and verbal communication with colleagues.

Work Environment:

  • Primarily operates in office and manufacturing environments
  • Much of the work is performed in a shop environment where it may be loud, dusty, hot or cold
  • Routinely uses standard office equipment such as computers, phones, and photocopiers
  • Regularly required to use personal protective equipment