Space Science & Application Group Leader (R&D Manager 4) | Los Alamos, NM | Los Alamos National Laboratory

Space Science & Application Group Leader (R&D Manager 4)

What You Will Do

Help support our National Security Mission and discover why we attract the best minds in the world! The Space Science and Applications Group (ISR-1) needs a highly motivated, dynamic scientific leader with expertise and experience in space research and exploration.

As the Group Leader, you will facilitate the success of individuals and teams in ISR-1, as well as collaborations across Los Alamos and the broader space science and applications community. As ISR-1 Group Leader you will provide both leadership and management for the scientific and technical work performed in the Group and will have the opportunity to understand the goals and challenges of a broad portfolio of scientific and technical projects. You will communicate and promote those goals, challenges, and successes to stakeholders and sponsors. You will help develop a vision for the future of this dynamic group and will be responsible for developing and implementing a strategy for achieving that vision, including identifying the key scientific and technical areas that ISR-1 should pursue; fostering a culture of continuous learning; developing and sustaining an expert workforce that is recognized as a unique national resource; mentoring, coaching, and building effective teams within and beyond the Group. You will build a workforce for the future to sustain scientific and engineering excellence and leadership, and to solve some of the most difficult problems of tomorrow. You will also be an integral member of the highly collaborative ISR Division Leadership Team, working with shared values toward common goals.

As the Group Leader, you will also facilitate success by identifying, managing, and mitigating technical and organizational risk; collaborating closely with Program Managers and Project Leaders to ensure delivery of space systems and information products on time and within budget; and providing a safe and secure working environment for all using the ISR core values supported by Human Performance Improvement and Safe Conduct of Research principles. You will be responsible for performance and salary management of staff; strategic workforce planning; providing growth and development opportunities; and recognizing individual and team accomplishments.

The Space Science and Applications Group (ISR-1) leads many of the basic science and national security missions conducted by the ISR division in support of LANL's Global Security mission. The rapidly-growing group is currently comprised of 46 staff scientists & engineers, 11 postdocs, and over 15 students. Our core expertise includes designing and operating sensors that measure x-rays, gamma-rays, neutrons, plasma, and energetic ions and electrons in space that are used to study the natural space environment of the Earth and Sun and to detect and characterize potential nuclear detonations on a global scale. Our researchers analyze, interpret, and perform studies using data from these instruments, and develop and refine space environment models (e.g., DREAM and SHIELDS) to now-cast space weather.

Our scientists lead or have led experiments on many NASA missions such as IBEX, ACE, TWINS, Mars Odyssey, Van Allen Probes, Cassini, IMAGE, and Lunar Prospector. Upcoming scientific missions with Los Alamos leadership include the MAMBO medium energy gamma-ray cubesat, two experiments on NASA's IMAP mission to understand the Sun's interaction with the interstellar medium, and NASA's BeamPIE rocket experiment, the first accelerator flown to space in over 30 years.

The Intelligence and Space Research (ISR) Division at Los Alamos National Laboratory has been designing, building, and operating innovative ground, air and space-based measurement and detection systems for over 60 years. We solve some of the most challenging scientific and national security problems facing the world today. Our interdisciplinary teams of engineers, technicians, and scientists work, learn, and succeed through a highly creative and dynamic R&D environment. We build, fly, operate, and analyze data from space-based instruments. Some are designed for basic research and discovery science while others support international nuclear treaty verification as part of the U.S. Nuclear Detonation Detection System (USNDS).

What You Need

Minimum Job Requirements:


Proven ability to motivate and lead a team with diverse skill sets and expertise through a complex technical risk landscape, for example with competing or conflicting priorities, or within highly constrained funding and schedule. Ability to drive a creative, entrepreneurial work environment in which innovation and continuous learning are essential for solving some of the most difficult challenges in science and national security.


Demonstrated record of successful management of a technical team, project or an organizational group which includes some experience in performance and salary management, budgeting, organization of workflow, recruitment, and workforce development.

Technical Knowledge

Demonstrated scientific and technical leadership in one or more areas of space science. Demonstrated record of successful innovative research proposals through a competitive peer-review process. Ability to lead and manage development, deployment, and exploitation of systems for space science and/or space-based national security missions.


Proven ability to work and interact effectively in a dynamic team environment; to build and lead cross-organizational collaborations and teams; and to motivate staff through common goals and objectives.

Workforce Development

Demonstrated ability to create opportunities and challenges for technical staff and advance their skills and knowledge, as both individuals and as teams. Demonstrated experience as mentor or coach.


Demonstrated effective written and verbal communication skills with individuals and groups, and effective presentations across a wide variety of audiences

Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion

Demonstrated commitment to ensuring workforce diversity to solve some of the most challenging problems of today and tomorrow. Demonstrated record of fostering a mutually respectful and inclusive work environment that is free from discrimination and harassment.


Position requires a Bachelor's Degree from an accredited institution and 8 years related experience; or an equivalent combination of education and experience directly related to the occupation.

Desired Qualifications:
  • Demonstrated ability to work broadly across a large organization to provide insight and advice on the successful completion of major programs.
  • Demonstrated professional-level experience and scientific and technical excellence in at least one of ISR-1's core capability areas.
  • Practical knowledge of typical business systems; operational and work processes; administrative and financial practices and procedures, including HR processes for personnel issues.
  • Demonstrated success in improving the safety, security, environment, and health envelope of a team workplace, such as through implementing Human Performance Improvement (HPI) and/or Safe Conduct of Research (SCoR) principles.

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.

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 maternity 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.

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.

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.

Incentive Compensation Program: Position is eligible to participate in the Triad Incentive Compensation Program.
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.Employment StatusFull Time