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Research Associate in High Radiation Detector Survivability with Security Clearance

Oak Ridge National Laboratory
Oak Ridge, TN
Closing date
Nov 26, 2021

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Science, Pharmaceutical, Clinical Research Associate
Organization Type
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Requisition Id 5239 Company The Verification Technology Group (VERTECH) of the Nuclear Nonproliferation Division (NND) at Oak Ridge National Laboratory (ORNL) seeks applicants for a full-time associate staff scientist position that will focus on the development, testing, and deployment of systems in high radiation environments for a variety of national security, proliferation detection, and international safeguards applications. VERTECH members combine expertise in radiation detection, measurement system development and deployment, system lifecycle management, and data analytics to provide the research and development (R&D) and associated technical and operational support that enables a conduct of nuclear nonproliferation missions for numerous US Government agencies. The successful applicant will work with these multidisciplinary teams to identify, develop, and implement solutions for national security challenges. This position will specifically focus on applications of fiber optic technology to monitor geological repositories or act as a tamper indicating seal for nonproliferation applications. The NND is a division operating within the National Security Sciences Directorate at ORNL. A key mission of the NND is delivery of R&D needed to improve the protection of nuclear materials and fuel cycle technology and prevent the theft, diversion, and illicit use of those materials or technologies, while at the same time allowing for their peaceful use in the global arena. The division is responsible for a range of expertise, facilities, and equipment and applies these combined assets to address R&D and operational challenges related to nonproliferation, safeguards, treaty verification, counterproliferation, and global nuclear security. The division activities also play a vital role in implementation of national policy issues that strive to ensure global nuclear security. The Safeguards and Treaty Verification Section focuses on enhancing scientific concepts, strategies, and technologies that will strengthen the capabilities of USG and international regimes (e.g., the IAEA and partner countries) to safeguard and secure nuclear material, commodities, and technologies from proliferation, enhance nuclear safety systems, and enhance treaty verification. The Verification Technologies Group focuses on research, development, and application of verification and security assurance devices and methods for applications such as monitoring unattended nuclear material containment systems, monitoring and authenticating regulated material movement, ensuring robust asset chain of custody, illicit unregulated material access or movement detection, and material data security and fidelity assurance. The individual selected for this position will be responsible for interacting with division staff members inside and outside CSE, working on projects in a team environment. The successful candidate is expected to be able to participate in the development of research proposals, and report results of their work in peer-reviewed journal publications, conference papers and technical reports. Major Duties/Responsibilities The responsibilities of this position include understanding high radiation testing for sensor systems and requirements for deploying systems into a high radiation environment. * Familiarity is expected in the following aspects of high radiation testing:
* Material behavior in high radiation environments
* Simulating materials in high radiation environments
* Crafting test plans to irradiate systems for high rad environment testing * The focus of this position will be on developing systems that can survive in high radiation environments and creating test plans/simulations to meet various high radiation environment standards as stipulated by the customer. The successful candidate will be expected to
* understand material properties and associated effects under irradiation
* develop, test, and maintain codes to simulate system behavior
* craft experiments to validate the model
* craft experiments to meet irradiation standards * The successful candidate will be expected to engage programmatically and technically across the division, directorate, and laboratory to help sustain and grow ORNL impact on nuclear nonproliferation and nuclear security missions.
* The candidate is expected to work well both in a team environment and independently and to fully document work performed in technical reports, papers, and presentations. The candidate will be responsible for contributing to and expanding VERTECH's capabilities and scientific impact through proposals and other program development.
* The researcher will support senior staff in the development and execution of projects that provide valued and timely deliverables supporting the National Security Sciences Directorate (NSSD) and nonproliferation customers.
* The successful candidate will maintain a strong commitment to the implementation and perpetuation of the institution values and ethics, and bide by all environmental, safety, health and quality requirements and implement practices per ORNL's Standards-based Management System (SBMS). Required * Ph.D. in Nuclear Engineering, Electrical Engineering, Physics, or related field
* Recent experience in national security research, nuclear nonproliferation applications, and/or international safeguards
* Firm understanding of the physics and material properties of sensor materials in high radiation environments
* Experience in modelling using MCNP with an emphasis on planning material irradiations in a test reactor to investigate material characteristics
* Experience handling irradiated material and the ability to craft and follow safety guidance for this type of work
* Demonstrated problem-solving skills, a willingness to apply those skills to a variety of problems, and the ability to determine and understand the broader context of his or her research. Desired * Detailed understanding of the physics and material properties of fiber optic and quantum communication detectors in high radiation environments preferably demonstrated with a patent in one of these application areas
* Proficiency in multiple modern coding languages is preferred; experience using Python is highly desirable
* Application of data-driven (e.g. machine learning, statistical approaches, etc.) methods to sensor systems and an understanding of the limitations of said techniques
* Excellent verbal, presentation and writing skills are required to enable effective interaction and communication with technical peers, program managers, and sponsors.
* Ability to understand and adapt to the unique challenges associated with national security problems Special Requirement This position requires the ability to obtain and maintain a clearance from the Department of Energy. As such, this position is a Workplace Substance Abuse (WSAP) testing designated position. WSAP positions require passing a pre-placement drug test and participation in an ongoing random drug testing program. This position will remain open for a minimum of 5 days after which it will close when a qualified candidate is identified and/or hired. We accept Word (.doc, .docx), Adobe (unsecured .pdf), Rich Text Format (.rtf), and HTML (.htm, .html) up to 5MB in size. Resumes from third party vendors will not be accepted; these resumes will be deleted and the candidates submitted will not be considered for employment. If you have trouble applying for a position, please email . ORNL is an equal opportunity employer. All qualified applicants, including individuals with disabilities and protected veterans, are encouraged to apply. UT-Battelle is an E-Verify employer.
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