Los Alamos National Laboratory Research Technologist 1/2 (Materials Preparation Research) in Los Alamos, New Mexico


Job Title Research Technologist 1/2 (Materials Preparation Research)

Location Los Alamos, NM, US


What You Will Do

This position will be filled at either the Research Technologist 1 or 2 level, depending on the skills of the selected candidate. Additional job responsibilities (outlined below) will be assigned if the candidate is hired at the higher level.

The Material Science in Radiation and Dynamical Extremes Group (MST-8) group provides expertise and facilities for characterizing, understanding, and modeling the relationships between materials properties and their underlying structures in support of Laboratory programmatic mission. MST-8 is responsible for providing institution-wide mechanical testing, ion microprobe, and ion implantation facilities. The group also possesses expertise and utilizes TEM, EBSD, x-ray and neutron scattering, synchrotron x-ray studies, and scanning probe microscopy. MST-8 also has a strong capability in modeling material response from the atomistic to the macroscopic level, including mechanical quasi-static, high-rate and irradiation induced deformation. MST-8 is engaged in a wide spectrum of basic and applied research programs with majority funding from Nuclear Weapons Programs, Basic Energy Sciences, Nuclear Energy Programs and Laboratory Directed Research and Development. The MST-8 Radiation Science Team and it’s material preparation laboratories is based at the Materials Science Laboratory but also has substantial capabilities at the Fuels Research Laboratoy. The team performs applied and fundamental research in support of LANL and external sponsors with strong research components in nuclear fuel development, scintillator development for radiographic and nuclear material detection applications, and novel material preparation for fundamental research.

This position of Materials Preparation Research Technologist will be filled at either the Research Technologist 1 or 2 level, depending on the skills of the selected candidate. Additional job responsibilities (outlined below) will be assigned if the candidate is hired at the higher level. The position resides in the Radiation Science Team and interfaces with Nuclear Energy programs. The research technologist will work support projects and programs for both internal and external customers. The successful candidate will work closely with scientists, engineers, technologists, and technicians to carry out research relevant to materials preparation. Initially, the primary research will include novel material preparation in single crystal and polycrystalline forms for targeted applications and fundamental studies in the areas of nuclear fuel development and scintillators. Interpersonal communication and teamwork are important elements of this work environment, as is a commitment to LANL’s safety and security culture. Depending on qualifications, the position will be filled as a RT1 or RT2. Roles and responsibilities for the position include:

Research Technologist 1 ($72,500 - $118,200)

  • Develop, implement, and complete project objectives such as synthesis of ceramic and intermetallic materials.

  • Contribute to internal reports, presentations, and peer reviewed publications.

Research Technologist 2 ($80,100-$131,000):

In addition to the responsibilities listed above, the Research Technologist 2 will:

  • Work without supervision

  • Author internal reports, presentations, and peer reviewed publications

  • Lead facility/capability improvements

  • Act as a formal mentor

  • Independently design, conduct and analyze experiments

What You Need

Minimum Job Requirements:

Research Technologist 1

  • Demonstrated knowledge of scientific principals, mathematical formulas, and data gathering methods.

  • Demonstrated competency and fundamental knowledge in materials science and engineering experimentation.

  • Solid technical skills and hands on familiarity with glovebox operation and material preparation.

  • Experience with common materials science laboratory instruments, such as grinding/polishing equipment, optical and electron microscopes, and thermophysical property measurement equipment.

  • Experience with computer based tools for data acquisition, processing and analysis.

  • Ability to work in a multi-disciplinary environment as well as ability to work independently, with initiative, to plan, implement, and successfully complete complex long-term projects.

  • Willingness to supply ideas and/or input for program development.

  • Interest in providing support and/or supervision for subordinates.

  • BS degree and a minimum of two years of related experience, or an equivalent combination of education and experience.

Additional Requirements for a Research Technologist 2:

  • Demonstrated proficiency and fundamental knowledge in materials science and mechanical engineering experimentation.

  • Subject matter expertise in material synthesis and preparation including nuclear material processing and property measurement.

  • Track record of supplying ideas and/or input for program or capability development.

  • Strong communication skills and the willingness to publish and present research at professional venues.

  • Experience providing support and/or supervision for subordinates.

  • BS degree and a minimum of five years of related experience, or an equivalent combination of education and experience.

Desired Skills:

  • Experience with ceramic nuclear fuel processing and preparation in a glovebox environment.

  • Ability to wear respirator.

  • Experience with nuclear fuel processing under a quality assurance program.

  • Experience with a nuclear material control and accountability process.

  • Experience with precious metals use and handling.

  • Experience with high temperature, controlled atmosphere furnaces including synthesis of ceramic materials in solid state and/or crystal growth from the melt.

  • Experience with preparation of ceramic and/or intermetallic samples for microstructural characterization and property measurement.

  • Experience with thermal expansion and/or specific heat measurement.

  • Ability to obtain a Q clearance.

  • Degree in mechanical engineering or materials science preferred.

Essential Job Functions: Color discrimination, depth perception, distance vision, reading vision, ability to speak, ability to smell, ability to hear in a normal range, fine motor control, gripping, carrying 30+ pounds.

Work Environment: Work with nuclear and radioactive material, operation of motor vehicle, work in a noisy environment, work near electrical power supplies, work near sources of ionizing radiation, work near machinery, cranes and moving parts, work with furnaces and hydraulic load frames, work with magnets, wearing personal protective equipment including eye protection, hearing protection, gloves and safety shoes.

Note to Applicants: Submit a detailed cover letter with your resume addressing all required and desired skills. Please save the cover letter with the job number and name.

Additional Details:

Travel: Infrequent travel will be required.

Clearance: Q (Position will be cleared to this level). Applicants selected will be subject to a Federal background investigation and must meet eligibility requirements

  • for access to classified matter.

  • 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.

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.

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

Internal Applicants: Please refer to Laboratory policy P701 for applicant eligibility.

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 regards 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 applyhelp@lanl.gov or call 1-505-665-4444 option 1.

Where You Will Work

Located in northern New Mexico, Los Alamos National Laboratory (LANL) is a multidisciplinary research institution engaged in strategic science on behalf of national security. LANL enhances national security by ensuring the safety and reliability of the U.S. nuclear stockpile, developing technologies to reduce threats from weapons of mass destruction, and solving problems related to energy, environment, infrastructure, health, and global security concerns.

Appointment Type Regular


Minimum Salary

Maximum Salary

Req ID: IRC69485