Simulation and Modeling of Phase Transitions under Extreme Conditions - Postdoctoral Researcher (Postdoctoral Research Associate)

What You Will Do

The Material and Physical Data group of the X-Computational Physics division (XCP-5) is seeking highly motivated candidates for a postdoctoral appointment to advance the modeling at the atomic level of the phase behavior of materials under high pressure and temperature conditions. The emphasis will be on the development and application of novel calculation techniques to predict and model the phase boundaries and phase transitions in pure substances and in multicomponent mixtures under and beyond physical conditions accessible experimentally. The work will involve various computational and theoretical tools, including molecular dynamics and Monte Carlo simulations with classical interatomic potentials in the traditional or machine-learning formats, quantum atomistic simulations, and methods from statistical mechanics and condensed matter physics. The selected candidate will also be encouraged to incorporate their results into practical constitutive models used in large-scale simulation codes. The project can be tailored to combine several aspects, depending on the applicant's strengths and interests.

XCP-5 is an interdisciplinary group which develops, implements, and validates constitutive models (material strength, damage and failure, etc.), equations of state (EOS), and physical data libraries including opacities and nuclear cross-sections for use in large-scale simulation codes; additionally, some group members collaborate in the design and analysis of small-scale and integral validation experiments for material models and physical data. XCP-5 offers an exciting, flexible, scientifically challenging work environment with many opportunities to collaborate with the broader LANL scientific community.

What You Need

Minimum Job Requirements:

Previous Experience
A strong background in one or more of the following fields: condensed matter physics, statistical physics, thermodynamics, material science, atomistic simulations.

Computing Experience
Experience with scientific computing and programing in programming languages such as C, Fortran, or Python, etc.

Strong interpersonal and teaming skills with the willingness to work with various communities at LANL, nationally, and internationally.

Publication and Presentation Record
Demonstrated expertise in physics through peer-reviewed publications and technical presentations.

Education/Experience: A Ph.D. in physics, materials science or a related field. A candidate may be considered for a postdoctoral position within five years of receiving their Ph.D. or will have completed all Ph.D. requirements by commencement of appointment.

Desired Qualifications:

Specialized Previous Experience
Experience in one or more of the following: statistical physics and thermodynamics, especially on topics related to equations of state and phase transitions; condensed matter physics, especially on topics related to equilibrium and transport properties of solids, liquids, or warm dense matter. It is desired that the candidate is skilled in both computational and analytical methods.

Previous Experience in Specialized Computational Methods
Experience in the development and application of techniques involving molecular dynamics methods, Monte Carlo methods, first-principles electronic-structure methods, or classical atomistic potentials.

Advanced Computing Experience
A proficiency and demonstrated experience with parallel scientific computing is desired. In addition, a candidate with extensive experience in C, Fortran, or Python is also desired. Finally, familiarity with high performance computing and Unix/Linux computing environments is a desired skill.

Clearance: A candidate with the ability to obtain and maintain a DOE Q clearance is desired, but not required. If eligible*, selected applicants will be subject to a Federal background investigation for access to classified matter. Non-US citizens are eligible for this position.
*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 Manual 472.2 for additional information.

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 not only apply for Laboratory jobs with the documented approval of their Division Leader. The position commitment for this position is 1 year.

Note to Applicants:
To be fully considered for the position, please include a cover letter in which you detail how your experience relates to each of the required and desired skills as applicable. Regular post-doctoral appointments are for two years and are renewable for a third year. Outstanding Post-doctoral candidates (with approximately 15 - 20 articles in reputable, peer-reviewed journals) may be eligible for a LANL Director's Fellowship, or the prestigious J. Robert Oppenheimer, Richard P. Feynman, or Frederick Reines Fellowships.
For specific inquiries regarding the position, please contact Dr. Jerome Daligault (

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.
No Clearance: 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. 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.