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Experimental Materials Scientist 2

Los Alamos National Laboratory
Los Alamos, NM
Closing date
Nov 21, 2023

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Organization Type
What You Will Do
The Nuclear Materials Science Group (MST-16) is seeking outstanding and highly motivated candidates for the position of Scientist 2. MST-16 is an international leader in plutonium science and engineering and supports a variety of fundamental to applied programs that include Office of Science programs, Laboratory Directed Research and Development, nuclear energy, Plutonium Modernization, nuclear forensics, Pit Surveillance, and global security. MST-16 maintains a multidisciplinary expertise in actinide materials science and engages in multiple areas central to laboratory missions, including materials characterization, phase stability, mechanical and dynamic properties, aging, electronic structure, modeling, corrosion, and surface science. Experimental work in MST-16 takes place in the Plutonium Facility (PF-4), the Radiological Laboratory/Utility/Office Building (RLUOB), the Target Fabrication Facility (TFF), and numerous other facilities at LANL and across the country.

The successful candidate will make important contributions to fundamental plutonium thermodynamics and apply that knowledge to address ongoing national security programs at LANL.

Scientist 2 $96,100 - $159,00099,200 - $164,100)
Research activities and responsibilities of the successful candidate will include the following:
  • Investigate materials science of Pu alloys and related compounds, with an emphasis on phase stability and phase transformations.
  • Perform thermophysical properties measurements on Pu metal, alloys, and compounds.
  • Collaborate with other scientists, technicians, and engineers to support all aspects of the experimental and computational research efforts in MST-16.
  • Contribute to the completion of milestones and proposals associated with various core mission programs and fundamental R&D projects.
  • Integrate results into peer-reviewed publications, conference presentations, and internal reports.
  • Actively participate in professional societies and working groups.
  • Maintain compliance with safety, security, and environmental regulations.

What You Need

Minimum Job Requirements:
  • Ph.D. degree in Materials Science and Engineering, Nuclear Engineering, Physics, Chemistry, or any related technical discipline with an emphasis on materials synthesis, properties, and characterization.
  • Demonstrated experience in experimental studies on phase stability and integrating results through a processing-structure-properties-performance perspective. Technical knowledge of materials characterization platforms such as calorimetry, dilatometry, diffraction, and electron microscopy.
  • Ability to work effectively, conscientiously, and professionally both independently and in a team environment to meet deliverables of multiple projects.
  • A record of documentation of technical work via peer-reviewed publications and the ability to express ideas clearly in oral and written formats.
  • Ability to obtain DOE Q clearance (usually requires U.S. citizenship) and HRP certification.

Position requires a Ph.D. degree in a STEM field from an accredited college or university, plus postdoctoral research experience at a university or national lab, or equivalent experience directly related to the occupation.

DOE Order 426.2: Requires a bachelor's degree and 2 years of relevant experience and 1-year nuclear experience.

Desired Qualifications:
  • Experience in writing proposals for funding and managing research programs and budgets .
  • Active Q clearance and HRP.
  • Experience working in a nuclear facility or with special nuclear materials.
  • Demonstrated experience in developing and conducting experiments with solid actinide samples.
  • Experiences in actinide materials synthesis, processing, and characterization
  • Experience in working with classified documents and items.

Note to Applicants: For full consideration, your application must include a cover letter that addresses how you meet the job requirements, and a resume/CV.

Work Location: The work location for this position is onsite and located in Los Alamos, NM. All work locations are at the discretion of management.

Position commitment
: Regular appointment employees are required to serve a period of continuous service in their current position in order to be eligible to apply for posted jobs throughout the Laboratory. If an employee has not served the time required, they may only apply for Laboratory jobs with the documented approval of their Division Leader. The position commitment for this position is 1 year. Where You Will Work

Located in beautiful northern New Mexico, Los Alamos National Laboratory (LANL) is a multidisciplinary research institution engaged in strategic science on behalf of national security. Our generous benefits package includes:
  • PPO or High Deductible medical insurance with the same large nationwide network
  • Dental and vision insurance
  • Free basic life and disability insurance
  • Paid childbirth and parental leave
  • Award-winning 401(k) (6% matching plus 3.5% annually)
  • Learning opportunities and tuition assistance
  • Flexible schedules and time off (PTO and holidays)
  • Onsite gyms and wellness programs
  • Extensive relocation packages (outside a 50 mile radius)
Additional Details

Directive 206.2 - Employment with Triad requires a favorable decision by NNSA indicating employee is suitable under NNSA Supplemental Directive 206.2. Please note that this requirement applies only to citizens of the United States. Foreign nationals are subject to a similar requirement under DOE Order 142.3A.

Clearance: Q (Position will be cleared to this level). Selected applicants will be subject to a background investigation conducted by or on behalf of the Federal Government, and must meet eligibility requirements* for access to classified matter. This position requires a Q clearance. and obtaining such clearance requires US Citizenship except in extremely rare circumstances. Dependent upon the position, additional authorization to access classified information may be required, which may or may not be available to dual citizens. Receipt of a Q clearance and additional access authorization ultimately is a decision of the Federal Government and not of Triad.

*Eligibility requirements:
To obtain a clearance, an individual must be at least 18 years of age; U.S. citizenship is required except in very limited circumstances. See DOE Order 472.2 for additional information.

HRP: This position is subject to the requirements of the DOE Human Reliability Program as specified in 10 Code of Federal Regulation, Part 712, §712.11. These requirements include on going drug and alcohol testing, as well as periodic medical and psychological evaluations.

426.2: This position is subject to DOE Order 426.2, Personnel Selection, Training, and Qualification Requirements for DOE Nuclear Facilities, which establishes entry-level requirements to ensure candidates selected for specific positions can successfully perform the requirements of the job.

New-Employment Drug Test: The Laboratory requires successful applicants to complete a new-employment drug test and maintains a substance abuse policy that includes random drug testing. Although New Mexico and other states have legalized the use of marijuana, use and possession of marijuana remain illegal under federal law. A positive drug test for marijuana will result in termination of employment, even if the use was pre-offer.

Regular position: Term status Laboratory employees applying for regular-status positions are converted to regular status.

Internal Applicants: Regular appointment employees who have served the required period of continuous service in their current position are eligible to apply for posted jobs throughout the Laboratory. If an employee has not served the required period of continuous service, they may only apply for Laboratory jobs with the documented approval of their Division Leader. Please refer to Policy Policy P701 for applicant eligibility requirements.

Equal Opportunity: Los Alamos National Laboratory is an equal opportunity employer and supports a diverse and inclusive workforce. All employment practices are based on qualification and merit, without regard to race, color, national origin, ancestry, religion, age, sex, gender identity, sexual orientation or preference, marital status or spousal affiliation, physical or mental disability, medical conditions, pregnancy, status as a protected veteran, genetic information, or citizenship within the limits imposed by federal laws and regulations. The Laboratory is also committed to making our workplace accessible to individuals with disabilities and will provide reasonable accommodations, upon request, for individuals to participate in the application and hiring process. To request such an accommodation, please send an email to or call 1-505-665-4444 option 1.

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