Rob Campbell, Optomechanical and Precision Machine Design Engineer

This a formal curriculum vitae.

To learn more about my professional background and engineering philosophy, check out the About page (and, of course, any of the articles on Practical Precision).

Robert J. Campbell Jr., PE
Owner, Practical Precision


US Patent 7,948,034 Apparatus and Method for Semiconductor Bonding

US Patent 8,139,205 Optical Payload with Integrated Laser Rangefinder and Target Designator

US Patent 8,269,893 Optical Payload Electrical System

US Patent 8,687,111 Optical Payload with Folded Telescope & Cryocooler


Shina, Sammy and Campbell, Robert J. Engineering Project Management for the Global High Technology Industry: McGraw-Hill, 2013.

I wrote the chapter on communication, which is much more extensive and detailed than that title would suggest. I’ll be expanding on those topics here, as they relate to engineering collaboration and successful project execution.

Campbell, Robert J. and Shina, Sammy, “A Cpk Based Design Toolkit”, Engineering Design Conference, London, UK July 2002

Teaching and Speaking

University of Massachusetts at Lowell – Adjunct Faculty, Francis College of Engineering

Engineering Capstone Design Project

Design of Machine Elements


Precision 101: The Principles and Application of Precision Machine Design

Remote Collaboration for Engineers


Practical Precision/Imagitec – Owner, Consultant – Apr 2006 to Present

  • Provide product development services for aerospace/defense systems; medical devices and life sciences equipment; semiconductor manufacturing equipment; digital prepress, printing, and finishing equipment; and industrial machining and laser systems, from concept inception to product introduction.
  • Engineering lightweight and rugged high-performance optical systems for aerospace, defense, and security applications, including stabilized gimbals and payloads; hand-held imagers and targeting systems; weapon sights; and space-based systems.
  • Develop complex, highly integrated medical devices and life sciences equipment that depend on precision motion, optics, and fluidics to achieve breakthrough results. Including implantables, durable, and durable/disposable.
  • Develop precision machinery and optomechanical devices for the semiconductor equipment; industrial machinery; and digital prepress, printing, and finishing industries.
  • Manage cross-organization, geographically-distributed teams to achieve customers’ aggressive cost and performance objectives, bring products to market faster, and capitalize on new market opportunities without increasing fixed costs.
  • Work with critical component suppliers and contract manufacturers to meet program requirements.

Insight Technology  Mechanical Engineer – 2010 to 2011

  • Design & analysis of military systems integrating optics, lasers, and electronics in rugged mechanical packages.

FLIR Systems – Sr. Mechanical Engineer – 2004 to 2010

  • Designed of IR and visible lens systems, including
    • Motorized focus lenses for use in power sensitive unmanned aerial vehicles (UAVs).
    • Manual focus lenses for handheld, harsh environment applications.
    • Passively athermalized IR lenses using mechanical methods
    • Designed precision mechanisms & drives, optical mounts, and structural components for reliable operation in harsh conditions, including shock and vibration, temperature extremes, and environmental contamination.
    • Thermal, modal, and structural analysis and design of precision sensors, rugged hand-held imagers, and airborne/maritime gimbal systems.
    • Designed multi-sensor (laser, IR, visible) payloads with strict bore-sight and bore-sight retention requirements for harsh environments and handling requirements.
    • Designed inertial navigation system; met strict performance, shock and vibration, and weight goals.
    • Designed azimuth and elevation axes of UAV gimbal, reducing weight and improving stiffness.

SUSS MicroTec – Project Manager, Design Engineer – 2000 to 2004

  • Managed two $1M+ projects to develop next generation, flagship semiconductor manufacturing systems in an ISO 9001 environment.
  • Prepared and presented to senior management project proposals, schedules, and budgets; managed on an ongoing basis.
  • Lead cross-functional team of electrical, mechanical, and software engineers and representatives from marketing, manufacturing, and service.
  • Conducted design and project reviews; mentored mechanical engineers.
  • Designed environmental control chambers – vacuum, overpressure, atmospheric composition.
  • Designed mechanisms for use in high-purity, high-vacuum, and other controlled environments, addressing contamination, thermal management, and outgassing/virtual leaks.
  • Designed precision mechanisms and structural assemblies, subject to 40 kN dynamic loads and high temperatures (> 500C).
  • Developed compact, micron-level tip-tilt adjustment for 200 mm wafers, stable under 40 kN loads and fluctuating temperatures.
  • Structural and thermal analysis – using hand calculations and FEA – of assemblies and components subject to high loads and temperatures. Modal analysis using FEA.
  • Selection of alloys, ceramics, and joining techniques to meet harsh environmental requirements.

GenRad – Design Engineer, Engineering Team Leader – 1997 to 2000

  • Lead cross-functional teams of engineers and technicians on projects to develop automated test and inspection equipment and subsystems.
  • Worked with customers to determine product requirements and to support field-testing.
  • Coordinated verification and test, including functional, environmental, and CE.
  • Managed release of products to manufacturing.
  • Designed kinematic optomechanical assemblies, fixtures, and alignment tools.
  • Error budgeting and tolerance analysis using worst-case and statistical methods.
  • Structural, dynamic, and thermal FEA of mechanisms, frames, and electrical enclosures.

Palomar Medical Technologies – Design Engineer

ECRM – Product Engineer

DuPont Imagitex – Mechanical Engineer


University of Massachusetts at Lowell – Master of Management Science – 2002

Virginia Tech – BS Mechanical Engineering – 1993

To learn more about my professional background and engineering philosophy, check out the About page (and, of course, any of the articles on Practical Precision).