Computational Earth Science Graduate Student | Los Alamos, NM | Los Alamos National Laboratory

Computational Earth Science Graduate Student

What You Will Do

The Computational Earth Science Group in the Earth and Environmental Sciences (EES) Division ( at Los Alamos National Laboratory (LANL) has an opening for a creative and resourceful graduate student with background in hydrogeology, subsurface flow and transport modeling, mechanical engineering, physics, or applied math. The successful candidate will apply and develop computational methods for simulation and analysis of models of radionuclide gas migration within fractured rock. Additional opportunities may include groundwater flow and transport modeling to support experiments related to radioactive waste disposition. Simulations will be performed using existing software (e.g., FEHM (, PFLOTRAN ( and analytical solutions. Analyses will be performed on historical data as well as on data from recent field and laboratory experiments.

The successful applicant will participate in creating and presenting research at technical conferences and program meetings and in the development of internal technical reports and manuscripts for submission to high-impact journals.

The starting date for the initial appointment is May 2022. Options for continuing work with the laboratory can be pursued after the initial appointment, but is not guaranteed and depends on future funding situations in addition to candidate performance.

What You Need

Minimum Job Requirements:

• Currently enrolled in an accredited Ph.D. program in Hydrology, Hydrogeology, Geosciences, Physics, Applied Mathematics, or Engineering.

• Must be enrolled in at least 6 semester credit hours (or full-time equivalent). Students preparing to begin a graduate program of study must provide documentation indicating matriculation into an appropriate degree program.

• Must currently have and maintain a cumulative GPA of at least 3.2 on a 4.0 scale (or equivalent).

• Have a theoretical understanding of processes related to gas flow and transport in fractured rock and porous media.

• Strong organizational skills.

• Excellent communication, writing, and oral presentation skills.

• Fluency in one or more programming languages such as Python, C++ or FORTRAN.

• Demonstrated ability to work creatively and independently in collaboration with large interdisciplinary and diverse research teams.

Education/Experience: Enrolled in an accredited Ph.D. program in Hydrology, Geosciences, Physics, Applied Mathematics, or Engineering with at least one year remaining before completion.

Desired Qualifications:

• Experience visualizing model output with ParaView, Visit, or other dynamic visualization software.

• Experience with Linux operating systems.

• Experience in application of numerical models of fluid flow and transport in fractured rock and porous media.

• Experience with machine learning methods.

• Ability to obtain a DOE Q clearance, which normally requires US citizenship.

Location: This position will be located in Los Alamos, NM.

COVID Vaccine:

The COVID vaccine is mandatory for all Laboratory students working on-site and students coming on-site, as well as any students coming on-site for any reason; unless granted an accommodation under applicable state or federal law.

Note to Applicants:

For further information, refer to LANL offers an excellent working environment.

Additional information about this position can be obtained by contacting Michelle Bourret (, +1 505 667 2165) and Philip Stauffer (, +1 505 665 4638).

For full consideration, applicants must submit a two page or less comprehensive cover letter, which addresses the key requirements of the position along with their CV and current transcripts.

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.

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). Applicants selected will be subject to a Federal background investigation and must meet eligibility requirements* for access to classified matter. This position requires a Q clearance which requires US Citizenship except in extremely rare circumstances. Dependent upon position, additional authorization to access nuclear weapons information may be required that may or may not be available to dual citizens depending upon the circumstances.

*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.

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.

For general program information refer to the Student Programs web page.
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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Follow the instructions below if you if you have never been employed with the Lab or received insurance coverage to create an account:

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How to Apply: Login to Your Account to Complete the Application Process

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If you experience any technical issues, please email for assistance.

Employment Status