“Discovering Quantum Anomalies Through Strain” Theoretical Postdoctoral Research Associates | Los Alamos, NM | Los Alamos National Laboratory

“Discovering Quantum Anomalies Through Strain” Theoretical Postdoctoral Research Associates

What You Will Do

The Physics of Condensed Matter and Complex Systems Group (T-4) is seeking outstanding postdoctoral candidates to join the "Discovering Quantum Anomalies through Strain" project team at Los Alamos National Laboratory. Theory positions will interface strongly with experimentalists in the Center for Integrated Nanotechnologies (MPA-CINT), National High Magnetic Field - Pulsed Field Facility (MPA-MAGLAB), and Quantum Group (MPA-Q). The large interdisciplinary project combines materials informatics, strain-based characterization, high magnetic fields, and ultrafast optics to quantitatively predict and experimentally isolate signatures of quantum anomalies in condensed matter, through experiments that are unique to LANL experimental capabilities. The postdocs will investigate Dirac semi-metals, a new class of topological quantum materials whose band structure can be tuned using strain.

Three important symmetries that exist in classical field theory are broken when translated to the quantum regime. These are called scale (or "conformal"), axial (or "chiral"), and parity quantum anomalies. This project consists of three topics that combine condensed matter theory and experiment to identify signatures of these anomalies in condensed matter systems: (1) integrated materials informatics-driven synthesis to enhance signatures of quantum anomalies, (2) MEMS-based high magnetic field thermal transport measurements, and (3) dynamic ultrafast optical measurements including time-resolved ARPES.

The Theory Postdoc will perform work in the T-4 group with access to state-of-the-art materials informatics computational expertise and will develop a complete theoretical framework for interpreting quantum anomalies in Dirac semimetals with impurities and external strains, and predict ways of increasing the magnitude of the quantum anomalies in experiment.

The successful candidate(s) will contribute to a one-of-a-kind collaborative team environment consisting of accomplished early, mid, and senior career scientists in fabrication of magneto-thermoelectric MEMS platforms, quantum materials synthesis, contacts and device processing, quantum materials theory, strain-tuned transport, high magnetic field experimentation, and ultrafast optical characterization.

Being part of this highly multidisciplinary team, the successful applicant(s) will have the chance to be part of a project with far-reaching implications for quantum effects leading to high profile publications. The success of this project will also contribute to applications in micro-bolometry, THz polarization state control, and robust quantum computing.

Additional information on programs, fellowships, and salary can be found at https://www.lanl.gov/careers/career-options/postdoctoral-research/index.php

What You Need

Minimum Job Requirements:

  • PhD in Physics, Chemistry, Materials Science, or closely related discipline. Applicant must be less than 5 years from graduation date at time of hire.
  • Relevant research background. Condensed Matter Theory with a background in topological materials, materials informatics, and high-performance computing algorithm development.
  • Strong publication record quantified in terms of impact in the applicant's field.
  • Demonstrated ability to work creatively and independently in collaboration with large interdisciplinary research teams.
  • Demonstrated ability to communicate effectively in oral and written English, both technically and interpersonally.

Education/Experience: A Ph.D. in Physics, Chemistry, Materials Science, or closely related discipline is required. The candidate must be within 5 years of completion of Ph.D. at time of selection and have completed all Ph.D. requirements by commencement of postdoctoral appointment.

Desired Qualifications:
  • Strong scientific record in the general area of quantum materials as demonstrated by publication in high impact factor journals, strong citation of published work quantified through total citation count and Hirsch-index, and recognition through national or international honors and awards.
  • Strong potential for attaining national and international stature in her/his field of research.
  • Demonstrated contributions to the area of quantum matter and strongly correlated systems.
  • Demonstrated ease of collaboration with experimentalists.
  • Leadership potential in a subfield of quantum matter.
  • Basic experience with team building and proposal writing.
  • Ability to integrate with a premier U.S. National Lab (and DOE) culture.
  • An understanding of LANL's research portfolio and its mission.
  • Able to foster an environment of creativity and intellectual vibrancy.
  • Track record of multidisciplinary approach to research.

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

COVID Vaccine:

The COVID vaccine is mandatory for all Laboratory employees, on-site contractors, and on-site subcontractors unless granted an accommodation under applicable state or federal law. This requirement will apply to those working on-site, those teleworking, and all new hires.

Note to Applicants:

A complete application package consists of a Cover Letter, CV, and names of 3 references. Applicants are expected to submit a detailed cover letter addressing how they meet the minimum job requirements and relevant desired skills (in bullet point format to each requirement), and the contact information for at least three professional references.

For further technical information or questions, please contact the project leadership team Dr. Avadh Saxena (aavdh@lanl.gov), Dr. Michael Pettes (pettesmt@lanl.gov), or Dr. Laurel Stritzinger (lwinter@lanl.gov).
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 (paid sick, vacation, 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.
Position does not require a security clearance. Selected candidates will be subject to drug testing and other pre-employment background checks.
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.
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 applyhelp@lanl.gov or call 1-505-665-4444 option 1.Employment StatusFull Time