Reference : 586359

Principal R & D Engineer - CT Platforms

  • Research and Development
  • United States NORTHBORO
  • Permanent / Regular (US)
  • Posting date : 05/24/2021

Position description

CertainTeed is seeking a Principal R&D Engineer to help improve the sustainability, performance, and appeal, of homes and buildings through research, design, and development of new products and services for the building industry. CertainTeed is a subsidiary of Saint-Gobain where we bring well-being to people by creating great living spaces and improving daily life. You’ll find us wherever people live, work, play, move and heal. Driven by people with unique ideas and a passion for excellence, our businesses manufacture world-class products for a broad range of engaging industries.

This position will be part of a multi-disciplinary team of experts in building physics, engineering, and architecture that focuses on new product and process development, and specializes in new markets, advanced materials, and new construction techniques. We use the latest design and prototyping technologies to get products in front of customers quickly, solicit feedback, and iterate new ideas. Our development philosophy is to fail fast, early, and question frequently to continuously improve our understanding of the customers’ needs and the right way for us to meet that need. Solutions will employ a wide variety of scientific, material, technological, and manufacturing expertise in collaboration with Saint-Gobain’s global, cross-industry community, including our sister R&D facilities in France, Germany, China, India, and Brazil.

The position is located at Saint-Gobain Research North America in Northboro, MA. Some travel, including international, would be required to job sites, factories, and to other Saint-Gobain / CertainTeed locations.

We are looking for the following qualities in a teammate:

  • Entrepreneurialism: We feel true ownership over whether our projects result in the improvement our customers’ lives and the health of the planet. You will need to be deeply self-driven to probe who exactly the customer is for your project and what their needs truly are. Also, you’ll be frequently pitching concepts to customers, partners, and internal executives for feedback and support.
  • Open-Minded: Our work includes making things, trying them (with customers), and using the knowledge about what failed to inform subsequent iterations. Knowing that innovation is an iterative process, you’ll need to stay open-minded about what the right product is, seeking to learn as much from what doesn’t work as from what does.
  • Maker Mentality: We make a lot of prototypes because they help us prove our ideas don’t work, freeing us to quickly move on to new ones. We work back-and-forth between 3D CAD and physical prototyping, so a willingness to build what you need to test a new product concept is key.
  • Analytical: Modeling and foundational knowledge helps us prioritize and guide prototyping and design activities. Computational modeling (e.g. FEA), literature reviews, and close-form models all play a role in deciding what to do for the next design iteration. While fluency in a particular modeling software is not required, learning new simulation tools, formulating simple analytical models, and learning from published literature are essential.


  • Must possess a body of technical work commensurate with their years of experience including but not limited to: demonstration of familiarity with statistical tools, data analysis, and drawing conclusions based on a collection of basic data and interpretation. 
  • Project leadership including project management, team collaboration, and oral and written communication skills are required.
  • Demonstrated basic knowledge in HSE.
  • Incumbent demonstrates ability to work with colleagues at various levels. 
  • Develop understanding of company policies and corporate structure.
  • Respectful communication and ability to collaborate in a team environment required.
  • Experience or interest in architecture, buildings, and/or construction strongly preferred.
  • Extensively utilizes research and experience to develop new products and processes to increase performance or advance fundamental research within a major product or technology area.
  • Manages multiple projects simultaneously, on time, well documented and within budget to meet business and customer objectives.
  • Seeks out others to enhance and streamline development and decision making.


  • BS Degree with a minimum of 15+ years experience, or MS with 10+ years of experience, or PhD degree in mechanical or civil engineering with 6+ years plus demonstrated technical judgement/accomplishments, project leadership, team collaboration, and oral and written communication skills
  • Experience with product design/development, 3D CAD, prototyping, testing, electronics, programming, and/or data analysis.

Who are we ?

Saint-Gobain designs, manufactures and distributes materials and solutions which are key ingredients in the wellbeing of each of us and the future of all. They can be found everywhere in our living places and our daily life: in buildings, transportation, infrastructure and in many industrial applications. They provide comfort, performance and safety while addressing the challenges of sustainable construction, resource efficiency and climate change.

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