Scientist 1/2

What You Will Do

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

Sigma Division is a unique facility at Los Alamos National Laboratory working in both fundamental and applied materials research, materials processing development, and metallurgical applications of new technologies. Sigma Division consists of two technical groups; Fabrication Manufacturing Science (Sigma-1), and Finishing Manufacturing Science (Sigma-2), each group contains multiple teams with specialized areas of expertise. Multiple teams in the Division are seeking candidates to fill positions as a Scientist 2 to support our work. In this role you will perform hands on research related to your field of study in various manufacturing methods as outlined below. The work will enable you to utilize and grow your knowledge while working with cutting edge technology related to these processing areas.

Sigma-1 and Sigma-2 are organized into eight Teams, each with a distinct specialty. The Teams are focused in the following areas:
  • Foundry & Solidification Science Team: The team utilizes vacuum induction melting (VIM), Vacuum arc remelting (VAR), and plasma arc melting (PAM) as standard tools to cast prototypes from ingots to near net shape cast components. Work typically involves radioactive materials such as depleted uranium and thorium.
  • Deformation Processing Team: The team utilizes equipment to roll, form and heat treat many different components. Equipment commonly used includes rolling mills, hydraulic presses, heat treatment furnaces, swagers, shears, wire-drawing equipment, and mechanical testing equipment (including dilatometers, hydraulic test frames, hardness testers, impact testers, etc.).
  • Machining & Inspection Team: The team houses a fully equipped machine shop and inspection lab to machine a wide range of metals and metal alloys (including depleted uranium and uranium alloys), as well as composite materials, plastics, foams, rubber, graphite, and other materials.
  • Welding & Joining Team: The team spans several different welding methods from handheld to electron beam. Team members are also involved with laser and electron beam additive manufacturing. Much of the work requires control systems to manipulate components.
  • Powder Materials Processing Team: The team works with both metals and ceramic materials to fabricate components to support many different programs. Much of the work is performed in gloveboxes and high temperature furnaces.
  • Electrochemistry & Corrosion Team: The team works with solution-based approaches to prepare and finish many types of materials with a variety of surface finishes, including gold, copper, nickel and chromium. The work typically involves acids and bases. The team also does solution and gas-phase corrosion investigations. Industrial surface preparation and finishing techniques are used, in addition to the development of novel surface characterization and treatment methods.
  • Materials Compatibility Team: The team studies how materials interact with their environment, fielding complex experiments designed to replicate real world conditions and developing predictive science to tell designers how long a system can remain in service. Each problem is distinct and requires novel experimentation, instrumentation, and analysis.
  • Characterization Team: The team utilizes a variety of scientific techniques to look at metal and material structures. These range from optical microscopy to scanning electron microscopy and transmission electron microscopy.

Candidates may indicate any preference in Team affiliation in their cover letter.

Scientist 1 ($92,300 - $151,000)

The selected candidate will:
  • Contribute to the completion of deliverables associated with various core mission programs as well as fundamental research and development projects.
  • Participate in design testing, analysis, verification, and validation.
  • Problem solving using standard techniques.
  • Contribute to technical products such as journal papers, reports, or proposals for funding.

Scientist 2 ($101,700 - $168,200)

In addition to the duties outlined above, the Scientist 2 will be required to:
  • Integrate results into internal reports, progress reports to sponsors, or technical publications in peer-reviewed journals, as appropriate to meet program objectives.
  • Acquires funding support for self, opinion able, for others.
  • Mentor junior staff and peers in technical and professional growth.

What You Need

Minimum Job Requirements:
  • Experience working across teams, groups, divisions and directorates
  • Ability to contribute to the project objectives applying expertise.
  • Demonstrated knowledge in one or more of the fields listed above, or a closely related one.
  • Excellent communication skills (written and oral).
  • Demonstrated experience in experimental design, execution, and analysis
  • Ability to obtain a Q Clearance, which normally requires US citizenship.

Additional Job Requirements for Scientist 2:

In addition to the Job Requirements outlined above, qualification at the Scientist 2 level requires:
  • Scientific expertise in one or more of the fields listed above, or a closely related one.
  • Experience producing professional publications and reports and presents findings at national technical meetings.
  • Ability to take direction and oversee complex issues.

Scientist 1 Education/Experience: Position requires a Bachelor's d degree in a STEM field from an accredited college or university and 2 years of related experience, or an equivalent combination of education and experience directly related to the occupation.

Scientist 2 Education/Experience: Position requires a Bachelor's degree in a STEM field from an accredited college or university and 4 years of related experience, typically with post-doctoral research experience at a university or national lab, or equivalent experience directly related to the occupation

Desired Qualifications:
  • Experience in energy security or threat reduction projects or applications.
  • Experience developing and cultivating successful scientific collaborations.
  • Broad knowledge of the DOE complex.

Note to Applicants: When submitting your application electronically to this vacancy, please submit at a minimum 1) a cover letter addressing the minimum requirements as outlined above, and 2) a resume/CV that contains the following information: education, major (if relevant), relevant work experience, professional references, relevant skills, and work areas of interest.

Work Environment

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.

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.