Automation Engineer, Lab Automation

94608, Emeryville
90K - 120 K plus bonus and equity and benefits
Apr 20, 2018
Required Education
Masters Degree/MBA
Position Type
Full time

Amyris has developed a high-throughput genetic engineering platform for designing and building custom microbes to serve as living factories. Using an industrial scale fermentation process, our self-replicating biofactories convert cheap sugars into a wide variety of high value target molecules, including medicines, fuels, and commodity chemicals. While providing low cost, high quality malaria medication and renewable substitutes for fuels and chemicals, our end products directly impact millions of lives while reducing humanity's carbon footprint. We are pragmatic idealists seeking a profitable way to make the world a better place.

We are searching for a talented, curious, and self-motivated individual to join our automation engineering team to extend and maintain the most advanced production-scale synthetic biology platform on the planet. R&D at Amyris is a highly multidisciplinary effort, where we need brilliant contributions from every area of the life sciences and engineering disciplines in order to take projects from concept to market.

From hacking directly on DNA in the lab to full scale factory production, every aspect of our work is facilitated and accelerated by software and hardware automation. Our tools integrate the activities of scientists, engineers, and industrial robots to enable the rapid optimization of genetic designs and laboratory processes.

Among the tools we have developed are a CAD/CAM system for genetic engineering: a compiler toolchain whose target architecture is life itself. This stack physically integrates high level genetic modules into microbial hosts. We also derive novel strains through random mutagenesis and directed evolution. Using our custom control platform, we then subject these experimental organisms to high throughput performance screening in our state-of-the-art robot labs.

Do you want to work with brilliant scientists and engineers to help create a better future for ourselves, our children, and everyone on the planet? Have you ever wished you could have gotten in on the ground floor at the dawn of the integrated circuit revolution? This is your chance to do foundational work in biotechnology. We are past proof of principle; we have begun the rapid expansion of a technology that will characterize this century. We're doing something far more interesting and exciting than almost anyone else out there, and we offer competitive compensation, excellent benefits, unlimited high quality conversation, free lunches, and beer! Please join us.


  • Scripting automated workflows on large integrated robotic systems.
  • Scripting automated workflows on robotic liquid handlers.
  • Working collaboratively with our scientists and software engineers to build efficient automated laboratory workflows in support of genomics, analytical chemistry, fermentation, and high throughput screening.
  • Creating and executing maintenance protocols and calibration routines for robotic peripherals.
  • DOE and execution of robotic system qualifications.
  • Implementing real time quality control measures into automated systems to track liquid handling performance, and detect/predict failure events.
  • Acting as an advocate and ambassador for the Automation team.


  •  BS or MS in a scientific or engineering discipline with 3+ years of hands on assay automation and liquid handling experience.
  • Expert ability to create, validate, optimize and maintain liquid handling processes on robotic workstations.
  • Experience with programming automated systems (Beckman FX/NX, Agilent VWorks, Biosero Green Button Go, Dynamic Devices Method Manager).
  • Direct experience in converting bench top or semi-automated into fully automated assays.
  •  Direct experience with the automation of genomics workflows.
  •  Ability to design, document and communicate complex laboratory workflows and requirements to a cross functional team.
  •   Energetic and self-motivated. Able to work independently and as part of a team.

Nice to have

  • Experience with relevant software languages such as python/perl, C, C++, C#, F#,SQL, LabView
  • Understanding of relational databases including design of data models and facility with SQL.
  •  Experience with integration of laboratory equipment to laboratory information systems (LIMS)

Amyris, a leader in industrial synthetic biology, uses its innovative bioscience solutions to achieve renewable products by converting plant sugars into hydrocarbon molecules. Amyris’ molecules are used in wide range of specialty & performance chemicals, flavors & fragrances and in applications ranging from cosmetics to biofuels. Learn more at

As a VEVRAA Federal Contractor, Amyris is an equal opportunity employer and all qualified applicants will receive consideration for employment without regard to race, sex, color, religion, sexual orientation, gender identity, national origin, disability status, protected veteran status, or any other characteristic protected by law. Amyris complies with applicable state and local laws governing nondiscrimination in employment.

For a full list of our current openings, please visit our website <>.