Graduate Research Associate

What You Will Do

Join our team of Earth Scientists! The National Security Earth Science Group (EES-17) in the Earth and Environmental Science (EES) Division at Los Alamos National Laboratory (LANL) is seeking graduate research assistants for multiple geophysical projects to join us in our efforts to meet the nation's earth science, environmental science, energy development, and national security challenges.

As a researcher in our group, you will work as part of a multidisciplinary team and will take an active role in the research project identified by your mentor. Research topics may include, but are not limited to the following:
  • Geophysical signal processing, including detection, characterization, and association
  • Machine learning/artificial intelligence applications to geophysical problems
  • Numerical modeling from source to sensor
  • Data collection and response modeling for sensor improvement
  • General data analytics

Some positions may involve collecting data in a laboratory and/or fieldwork setting. For all positions, you will work closely with your mentor to develop a research plan, meeting schedule, and set mentor/mentee expectations. Depending on the project, your required deliverables may include oral presentations, written reports, and/or code documentation and delivery.

What You Need

Minimum Job Requirements:

Experience in the following areas relevant to EES Division:
  • 2 semesters of computational programming experience in languages like C/C++, Fortran, Python, Matlab, etc. Any combination of: programming-specific courses, research projects that involve programming, and courses that require programming to complete assignments would satisfy this requirement.
  • Completed a written scientific or technical report, scientific literature review, or oral presentation in a classroom, professional, or scientific conference setting.
  • Currently enrolled in or admitted to a relevant graduate degree program (math- or physics-based earth or space science or similar fields).

Must be enrolled in at least 6 semester credit hours or full-time equivalent (with the exception of those working on their thesis/dissertation for which the credit requirement is 1 credit per semester).

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

Desired Qualifications:
  • Research experience in the earth sciences or related fields.
  • Publication in a peer-reviewed scientific journal, and/or presentations at national or international scientific conferences.
  • For some projects, specific experience related to the funded project may be desired. These may include: signal processing, wave physics, numerical modeling, statistics, machine learning, and sensor deployment.
  • Demonstration of independent scholarship or research, and demonstration of effective communication skills to interact with a multidisciplinary, integrated team.

Work Location: The work location for this position is hybrid. Hybrid is defined as working partially onsite/partially off site but within 2 hours ground commute of this location. All work locations are at the discretion of management and can change at any time with appropriate notice.

Note to Applicants:
  • No applicant is expected to have all the desired qualifications. Anyone who meets the minimum requirements is encouraged to apply.
  • Please include in the application a CV with optional cover letter describing other relevant information.
  • Contact Dave Coblentz ( for more details about this position.
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.
  • 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)

For general program information refer to the Student Programs web page.
Additional Details

Directive 206.2 - Employment with Triad requires a favorable decision by NNSA indicating the 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.

No Clearance: Position does not require a security clearance. Selected candidates will be subject to drug testing and other pre-employment background checks.

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.

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, 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.

How To Apply

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