Singer Instruments – BBSRC DTP PIPS Placement – Ongoing


Name Singer Instruments
Placement base location Singer HQ, Roadwater near Minehead, Somerset, UK
Contact for enquiries Dr Oliver Jack Severn
Contact details Email:  Phone: (0) 1984 640226
Placement job title BBSRC DTP PIPS Placement
Potential start date Flexible
Potential working pattern Full-time
Details of application method Please apply through our website at
Application closing date Ongoing
Overview of PIPS organisation

Singer Instruments was established in 1934 and has a long-standing track record in developing and manufacturing mechatronic workstations and laboratory automation robotics. Our world-leading, specialist products are used to facilitate and accelerate genetic and genomic research around the world. We supply public and private research institutions in multiple facets of biological sciences including Genetics, Neuroscience, Systems Biology, Cancer Biology, Biofuel Engineering and microbiology.

Our premises, on the edge of Exmoor National Park in Somerset, England, is a state-of-the-art factory with full, virtual prototyping facilities, precision CNC manufacture and robotic coordinate measurement for quality control. We design, manufacture, program, assemble and QC all of our core products on site.

Having worked alongside and added value to laboratory research for over 40 years, we are a truly integrated and respected member of the genetics research community.

The Research team aims to use ‘Science!’ to achieve “A Responsibility to Science”. This means actively enquiring, and devising experiments that prove that our equipment facilitates, automates and accelerates scientific research. These experiments should be rigorous enough to reveal truth, free from investigator bias.

We are also actively publishing, pursuing research into yeast strains that improve the aroma and flavour of beers and wines. Because the best science is one you can drink…

We require biologists who are happy to learn new things and give insight to our wider team!

Placement offered
Singer Instruments is a fast-paced SME environment. As such, projects are subject to change as required by business need. Generally speaking, each project includes:

  • Working with a robotic instrument to test its capabilities and investigate its restrictions.
  • Previous examples involve producing bioart with colony pickers, investigating the use of fluorescent strains, and testing new detection algorithms.
  • Collaborating with Engineering, Software, Service and Quality on numerous projects, gaining and consulting with expertise. Applying biological knowledge to technical problems.
  • A desk based research piece. This is usually heavily tied to new product development, and hence tends to be the most secretive. Previous examples have included environmental impact reduction, studying new applications and how they can be applied, and how this may change in the future.

Essential Skills

  • An independent working style.
  • A robust approach to reporting.
  • Flexibility to sudden project changes based on business needs.
  • Adherence to non-disclosure agreements, as projects can include valuable prototypes and intellectual property.
  • It should be noted that no knowledge of engineering, software development or marketing is required. However, if the student does have an appropriate background, and wishes to investigate these skills further, cross departmental projects can be arranged.

Skills Developed

  • Agile Project Management – Working in Sprints with a close knit team.
  • Working heavily with robotic laboratory equipment, from early development prototypes to market ready instruments.
  • Cross departmental communication (Software, Engineering, Marketing)
  • Industry research processes
  • Organisation (Specifically pub trips and curry evenings.)
Financial contribution/benefit(s)
Support available for accommodation.