Engineer – Software & Model Development

Energy Systems Catapult

  • Full Time

To apply for this job please visit

Salary: Up to 50k + Benefits

Status: Permanent /Full-time strongly preferable (however can potentially be flexible)

About us

Energy Systems Catapult was set up to accelerate the transformation of the UK’s energy system and ensure UK businesses and consumers capture the opportunities of clean growth. The Catapult is an independent, not-for-profit centre of excellence that bridges the gap between industry, government, academia and research. We take a whole-systems view of the energy sector, helping us to identify and address innovation priorities and market barriers, in order to decarbonise the energy system at the lowest cost.

About us

The Energy Systems Catapult is one of a network of elite technology and innovation centres set up by Innovate UK. The Catapult works with companies that are focused on exploiting the opportunities created by the need to transform global energy systems; not only playing a part in accelerating technology based solutions, but also engaging with Government to address the market mechanisms and business models that will be required to enable such solutions.

The Energy Systems Catapult will create a critical mass for business and research innovation, focusing on electricity, heat and combustible gases. This centre will be an important part of the UK’s innovation system, making a major long-term contribution to UK economic growth.

During lockdown, we have been working remotely and as we begin to focus more on the future, we intend to embrace a new refreshing way to utilise our office in Birmingham City Centre . As a consequence we are developing a flexible approach to the workplace , which ensures we keep some of the benefits of home working whilst enabling the Catapult to operate efficiently, this hybrid way of working may result in the majority of us working from home for a good chunk of the time, merging the best bits of both office and home working.


The ESC is an impartial body with unrivalled capabilities in whole energy system modelling and analysis. This means that we can play a key role in shaping and supporting evidence-based policy and investment decision making by a range of public and private sector partners. Our energy systems models span across national, local and building scale energy systems. Our modelling capability has been developed over the past 14 years, ranging from mature and established (e.g. ESME and EnergyPath Networks™) through to newly developed models (e.g. Storage and Flexibility Model). Our modelling is critical to our ability to understand implications of energy system development pathways and underpins much of our thought leadership and work across ESC.

As a part of the ESC team you will focus on designing and implementing the functional changes to our modelling portfolio to ensure that they meet our internal needs and the needs of the market. You will be involved in both improving existing models and developing new modelling capability where we see a need.

This role offers an exciting opportunity to bring to bear your strong software development and mathematical modelling skills in a creative and forward-looking environment on the cutting edge of energy innovation.

The Catapult is an exciting, rewarding and intellectually stimulating place to work.  The Birmingham and Derby offices are newly designed to be stylish and to spur innovation, collaboration and creativity. Working at the Catapult allows you the opportunity to work alongside likeminded and talented colleagues and partners from several fields, supporting the development and application of a holistic view of the energy system.

Key Deliverables

To contribute to and lead aspects of the development of ESC’s Modelling Capability across national and local energy system scales. The Modelling Capability is part of the Innovation Directorate.

The work you do will be critical to:

  • Development of the modelling tools we need to answer the critical questions for the energy system transition
  • Enabling existing models to become more capable, robust and efficient to exploit
  • Delivery of high quality and robust work, based upon our modelling to public and private clients

In the first 12 months, you should expect to:

  • Develop a deep understanding of at least two of our models (EnergyPath Networks and ESME), becoming competent at performing functional and non-functional developments of these models.
  • Develop and implement technical specifications for model-related aspects of a range of projects and model development activities across local and national energy systems
  • Support our modelling analysts to effectively use our models on a variety of UK based and international projects to create valuable outcomes for our clients
  • Support the development of commercial opportunities with significant modelling aspects
  • Gather data related to national and local energy system modelling from a variety of sources, processing this to incorporate into our models, derive insights and enable further analysis by colleagues
  • Work with and contribute to other teams within the ESC (covering a wide range of disciplines), to deliver meaningful and impactful results for both internal and external pieces of work.

Beyond 12 months, you can expect to:

  • Specify and deliver new products and ESC model offerings in line with market needs
  • Lead interpretation of modelling outputs to support high-quality insightful understanding for our internal and external facing clients
  • Lead the implementation of our modelling quality assurance processes
  • Gain experience using a wider set of ESC models
  • Contribute towards the strategic direction of our modelling portfolio
  • Collaborate across teams in ESC to develop new customer offerings
  • Support the integration of multiple modelling assets to form unique and valuable insights
  • Develop a thorough understanding of whole energy system design (if not already proficient) 

Key Work Activities

We are looking for a talented and motivated ‘Engineer – Software and Model Development’ to join our Modelling Capability. You will be one of the ESC experts in energy system model specification and development.

We have developed a set of models in the sector, including our Energy System Modelling Environment (ESME), EnergyPath Networks™, Storage and Flexibility Model, Home Energy Dynamics, the Infrastructure Transitions Analysis Model, and the Infrastructure Cost Calculator, each of which are sector leading and in high demand. You will expect to work initially with two of these models (EnergyPath Networks and ESME) on an exciting and varied set of projects to create impactful insights, both for our own thought leadership and for external clients as part of commercial projects.

Specific accountabilities include:

  • Translate market and client needs into detailed technical model specifications
  • Provide mathematical modelling and software development expertise to the development of our models. For example, you will be asked to implement the technical specifications for model functionality changes to our models. These models vary in architecture, but many are linear and mixed-integer programming-based techno-economic optimisations.
  • Lead teams of modelling analysts to deliver model improvements that support delivery of our workloads
  • Provide expert interpretation of modelling outputs in relation to the modelling methodologies that led to them
  • Support the technical skills development of modelling analysts within the Modelling Capability
  • Through personal authority build relationships with influential thinkers and experts in the energy modelling sector
  • Work with the Practice Managers for National Energy Systems and Local Area Energy Planning to ensure that our models are robust and validated
  • Utilise existing ESC models and analytical tools to define, develop and deliver new analysis and insights (e.g. in areas relating to the role of energy storage in future energy systems)
  • Support the Practice Managers for National Energy Systems and Local Area Energy Planning to define and deliver the long-term strategy for our modelling asset development.
  • Engage with the wider ESC modelling community to share best practice and support knowledge and capability development.
  • Ensure that the audit trail for key source documents and decisions is maintained and transparent, so that key modelling and strategic outputs can be traced back to their source inputs.
  • Where appropriate, develop bespoke tools and undertake analysis in a timely fashion to derive valuable insights from available data
  • Produce high quality technical reports and summaries for both ESC and external audiences. 

What credentials are we ideally looking for?

You will need to be results orientated and self-motivated with extensive programming, software development and mathematical modelling skills and with client facing experience, able to lead, facilitate and persuade through your personal authority and approach.


Educated to degree level in engineering (Bachelors, Masters or Doctoral level) or a relevant technical subject with a strong applied mathematical modelling aspect; should aspire to professional (Chartered) status within a relevant discipline.


  • Substantial experience in applying mathematical modelling approaches to applied real world complex problems
  • High level of expertise across a range of programming languages and environments – required: SQL, Python, Excel / VBA; highly desirable: EnergyPlus, PSS Sincal, AIMMS (or another mathematical programming language/platform); desirable: ArcGIS, R, Matlab
  • Understanding of the typical simplifications used in Linear Programmes / Mixed-Integer Programmes – e.g. piecewise linear assumptions, big-M, SOS etc
  • Experience working with large quantities of data from disparate sources
  • Experience with GIS and visualisation techniques is desirable.
  • Experience working with and improving existing models and/or code bases
  • Experience within the energy sector is highly desirable
  • Demonstrable examples of applying systems thinking is highly desirable.
  • Substantial experience of low carbon technology programmes, and the wider sustainability agenda, is desirable.
  • Excellent numeracy skills – comfortable analysing and interpreting datasets with an ability to explain complex analysis issues to others
  • High quality writing and analytical skills (ability to distil key messages from complex source data/reports), and
  • A demonstrated ability to learn about new areas of technology and their application.


  • Exceptional analytical and problem-solving skills.
  • Proven leadership, team working and project management skills.
  • Strong inter-personal skills – articulate and able to work with a diverse team of colleagues with backgrounds across science, engineering, business, and policy.
  • Able to consider implications, anticipate problems and solve them pragmatically and with consideration of the wider needs of the team.
  • Strong IT and communication skills and the ability to produce clear, concise and accurate reports.
  • Strong presentation and communication skills.
  • A can-do attitude, able to work with limited supervision under pressure and to tight deadlines.
  • Persuasive and approachable you can successfully manage relations with clients, colleagues and other stakeholders.
  • Comfortable dealing with ambiguity and ability to work effectively in line with changing priorities

Would you like to Apply?

The closing date for applications is Monday 19th July 2021

Please note that at this time we are unable to provide UK visa sponsorship.

Energy Systems Catapult undertakes innovative and exciting work that will help shape the future of energy, with this in mind we encourage candidates to submit their applications as early as possible, as we do reserve the right to remove this advert or close it to further applications at any point during the recruitment process.

(Strictly No Agencies).

“We are an equal opportunities employer and welcome applications from all suitably qualified persons regardless of race, sex, disability, religion and belief, sexual orientation, or status regarding gender reassignment, marriage and civil partnership, pregnancy and maternity.”

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