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We hope you are inspired by what we do and are excited to contribute to our mission. The Academy is looking for candidates who do great work, and we know they may come from a number of different backgrounds and experiences. We encourage you to apply even if you do not believe you meet every ­one of the qualifications for the position.

Please note: As of Friday, August 27, Academy employees and volunteers will be required to provide proof of COVID-19 vaccination or undergo testing and provide negative test results before they are able to work on-site or off-site with others.


Are you interested in being part of a team making science films that change the world? Would you like to apply your technical skills to transform how people see their connection to our planet, nature, and the cosmos? The Planetarium Production Systems Administrator plays an integral role in the creation of beautiful cutting-edge science content showcased in San Francisco and planetariums around the world. 

As part of the award-winning Visualization Studio, you work alongside our engineers, maintaining and improving the computing infrastructure used by our visualization artists.  You are integrated into the daily operations of the productions you support, including the operation of the planetarium playback system as we critique our work. This is a great opportunity for learning within a unique digital production environment embedded in a world-class science museum.  This position reports to the Senior Producer for Immersive Media.

We are committed to ensuring diversity, equity, accessibility, and inclusion are intrinsic to Academy culture and operations, from recruitment and retention to science and advocacy. Explore Our Commitment to Racial Equity to learn about our intentional engagement of traditionally excluded groups in an effort to spark interest in or foster pathways to scientific careers.


  • Install and maintain high-performance systems to support visualization artists
  • Customize Linux and Mac workstations for pre-rendered and real-time 3D graphics
  • Support Windows workstations
  • Support networked storage and rendering infrastructure
  • Develop and maintain disaster recovery, backup, and archive strategy
  • Collaborate with consultants, vendors, and Academy staff on design, planning, and budgeting of hardware and software infrastructure and cloud-based services
  • Generate and maintain documentation of systems
  • Participate in the daily meeting with the production team
  • Provide support and coverage for planetarium systems operations and render farm, with periodic night, weekend, and holiday shifts


The qualifications listed below are representative of the knowledge, skills, and abilities required or preferred:


  • Knowledge of 3D and video production workstation architecture
  • Linux and MacOS or Windows administration experience
  • Good understanding of TCP/IP networking; ability to troubleshoot and resolve network issues in a timely manner
  • Comfortable scripting with Python or similar
  • Works well with cross-discipline and cross-departmental teams
  • Open collaborator who tracks/shares progress proactively and regularly
  • Motivated individual with solid problem-solving abilities, a willingness to learn, and attention to detail


  • Data server administration experience
  • Virtual machines knowledge
  • Remote workstation, cloud storage, and computing familiarity 
  • Render farm management software experience
  • Experience working in visual effects, animation, science visualization, or audio/visual production
  • Experience with visual effects software (e.g. Houdini, Maya, Blender, Nuke, Adobe CC) 
  • Experience with Unreal Engine or Unity 
  • Ability to read and fully comprehend documents such as safety rules, operating and maintenance instructions, and procedure manuals
  • Ability to write end-of-day reports and correspondence


Reasonable accommodations may be made to enable individuals with disabilities to perform the essential functions. While performing the duties of this job, the employee is frequently required to stand, sit, walk, reach with hands and arms, use a computer, and communicate on the phone, in person and online meetings/calls. Must be able to transport 30 lbs. and perform repetitive motions 50% of the time.  Must be able to climb a ladder, climb multiple flights of stairs, and sometimes work in a low-light environment.  Must be comfortable navigating tight spaces and tolerate fan noise and low temperatures in server cold rooms.

The candidate must be able to work primarily onsite and in accordance with the latest health and safety guidelines.  Employees who meet the eligibility requirements for work from home may do so as long as they work from their home in California.

APPLICATION DEADLINE: Applications will be reviewed on a rolling basis until the position is filled.

APPLICATION PROCESS: Please upload a resume and complete the brief online application.

The California Academy of Sciences welcomes people of all backgrounds, identities, and beliefs to join us in achieving our mission to explore, explain, and sustain life. We place diversity, equity, and inclusion at the heart of our recruiting efforts and strive to build a culture centered on mutual respect, equal treatment, and the opportunity to succeed.

The California Academy of Sciences will give full consideration for employment to all qualified applicants with criminal histories in a manner consistent with the requirements of the San Francisco Fair Chance Ordinance (SF Police Code, Article 49).

The California Academy of Sciences is an Equal Opportunity Employer and is committed to ensure that all employees and applicants receive equal consideration and treatment, regardless of race, color, creed, gender (including gender identity or gender expression), religion, marital or domestic partner status, age, place of birth, national origin or ancestry, physical, mental or medical disability, height or weight, sex, sexual orientation, citizenship, military service status, veteran status, or any other characteristic protected by state or federal law or local ordinance.