Spectroscopist - Principal Scientist

Santa Barbara, CA
Closing date
Dec 4, 2023

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Organization Type
Mission Support and Test Services, LLC (MSTS) manages and operates the Nevada National Security Site (NNSS) for the U.S. National Nuclear Security Administration (NNSA). Our MISSION is to help ensure the security of the United States and its allies by providing high-hazard experimentation and incident response capabilities through operations, engineering, education, field, and integration services and by acting as environmental stewards to the Site's Cold War legacy. Our VISION is to be the user site of choice for large-scale, high-hazard, national security experimentation, with premier facilities and capabilities below ground, on the ground, and in the air. (See NNSS.gov for our unique capabilities.) Our 2,750+ professional, craft, and support employees are called upon to innovate, collaborate, and deliver on some of the more difficult nuclear security challenges facing the world today. In this environment, the best ideas need to be voiced and every opinion matters. As such, MSTS places great value on Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion and is committed to a diverse and equitable workforce, with an inclusive culture that values and celebrates the diversity of our people, talents, ideas, and perspectives.
  • MSTS offers our full-time employees highly competitive salaries and benefits packages including medical, dental, and vision; both a pension and a 401k; paid time off and 96 hours of paid holidays; relocation (if located more than 75 miles from work location); tuition assistance and reimbursement; and more.
  • MSTS is a limited liability company consisting of Honeywell International Inc. (Honeywell), Jacobs Engineering Group Inc. (Jacobs), and HII Nuclear Inc.
The Special Technologies Laboratory seeks a talented individual to join our staff of scientists, engineers and technicians. In this role, as Principal Scientist (Spectroscopist), you will work in a team environment to solve national security problems. In addition to performing technical work, you will work in teams as both a leader and as a contributor.

Key Responsibilities
  • Work as a Principal Investigator proposing, developing, testing and delivering novel optical imaging, spectroscopy and trace chemical sensing systems.
  • Primary duties will be to perform a wide range of simulation and experimental tasks that result in field experiments and reports.
  • Responsible for leading small project teams (including tasking and budgets) and reporting deliverables directly to sponsors.
  • Initial work assignments will involve development, testing, and modeling laser-based optical sensing systems and the development and execution of experiments on existing projects using Short-wave infrared (SWIR) and Mid-Wave Infrared (MWIR) fiber lasers and laser combs.
  • Work with other senior staff to conduct experiments for a diverse array of real-world applications.
  • Work assignments will involve travel to participate in field experiments.
  • Responsible for proposal development of R&D projects made up of 2 to 5 full time employees.
  • May submit articles and papers for publication in technical and professional journals, and will present project summaries at professional meetings.
  • Work in teams as both a leader and as a contributor.
  • Bachelor's degree in a calculus-based (STEM) field, plus at least 9 years' relevant experience. Skill building experience must demonstrate either deeper technical specialization or additional cross-disciplinary knowledge. Graduate research experience may be recognized.
  • A Ph.D. in a physical science in a field related to the position and a minimum of two years related professional post-graduate research experience is desired.
  • Must have a strong experimental and theoretical background in science directed towards real world optical sensing applications.
  • Knowledge of atomic and molecular spectroscopy, modeling, and laser science are required.
  • Must demonstrate a strong emphasis in mathematical methods for solving complex physical problems, as well as a solid foundation in optical and instrumental design and execution of experimental measurements.
  • Experience in remote optical and high-resolution laser spectroscopy is required. Image processing or computational expertise with Matlab or C/C++ is strongly desired.
  • Competence with Microsoft Office is required.
  • Must possess excellent oral/written communications, interpersonal, and mathematical skills. Demonstrated ability to use reasoning and problem-solving skills, and apply knowledge, experience, and judgment to evaluate and interpret data.
  • Must be able to deal with pressures of deadlines and multiple tasks.
  • Must demonstrate effective interpersonal skills to communicate orally and in writing with coworkers and peers.
  • Willing and able to submit articles and papers for publication in technical and professional journals, and present project summaries at professional meetings.
  • Demonstrated ability to work in teams as both a leader and as a contributor.
  • The primary work location will be at the Special Technologies Laboratory (STL) located in Santa Barbara, CA.
  • Pre-placement physical examination, which includes a drug screen, is required. MSTS maintains a substance abuse policy that includes random drug testing.
  • Must possess a valid driver's license.

MSTS is required by DOE directive to conduct a pre-employment drug test and background review that includes checks of personal references, credit, law enforcement records, and employment/education verifications. Applicants offered employment with MSTS are also subject to a federal background investigation to meet the requirements for access to classified information or matter if the duties of the position require a DOE security clearance. Substance abuse or illegal drug use, falsification of information, criminal activity, serious misconduct or other indicators of untrustworthiness can cause a clearance to be denied or terminated by DOE, resulting in the inability to perform the duties assigned and subsequent termination of employment. In addition, Applicants for employment must be able to obtain and maintain a DOE Q-level security clearance, which requires U.S. citizenship, at least 18 years of age. Reference DOE Order 472.2, "Personnel Security". If you hold more than one citizenship (i.e., of the U.S. and another country), your ability to obtain a security clearance may be impacted.

Department of Energy Q Clearance (position will be cleared to this level). Reviews and tests for the absence of any illegal drug as defined in 10 CFR Part 707.4, "Workplace Substance Abuse Programs at DOE Sites," will be conducted. Applicant selected will be subject to a Federal background investigation, required to participate in subsequent reinvestigations, and must meet the eligibility requirements for access to classified matter. Successful completion of a counterintelligence evaluation, which may include a counterintelligence-scope polygraph examination, may also be required. Reference 10 CFR Part 709, "Counterintelligence Evaluation Program."

MSTS is an Equal Opportunity/Affirmative Action Employer. All qualified applicants will receive consideration for employment without regard to race, color, religion, sex, sexual orientation, gender identity, national origin, disability, veteran status or other characteristics protected by law. MSTS is a background screening, drug-free workplace.

Annual salary range for this position is: $121,451.20 - $185,224.00.

Starting salary is determined based on the position market value, the individual candidate education and experience and internal equity.

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