31. January 2015 - Oak Ridge National Laboratory
GP-SANS Senior Instrument Scientist
GP-SANS Senior Instrument Scientist
31. January 2015 - Oak Ridge National Laboratory
GP-SANS Senior Instrument Scientist
GP-SANS Senior Instrument Scientist
Oak Ridge National Laboratory

Oak Ridge, Tennessee, USA


The Neutron Sciences Directorate (NScD) at Oak Ridge National Laboratory (ORNL) operates the High Flux Isotope Reactor (HFIR), the United States’ highest flux reactor-based neutron source, and the Spallation Neutron Source (SNS), the world’s most intense pulsed accelerator based neutron source. Together, these facilities operate 30 instruments for neutron scattering research. Each year, these facilities carry out in excess of 1,000 experiments in the physical, chemical, materials, biological and medical sciences for more than 3,000 visiting scientists. HFIR also provides unique facilities for isotope production and neutron irradiation. To learn more about Neutron Sciences at ORNL go to: http://neutrons.ornl.gov.

Description of Institution

The Chemical and Engineering Materials Division (CEMD) has an immediate opening for a Senior Instrument Scientist on the General Purpose Small Angle Neutron Scattering (GP-SANS) beamline at HFIR. The Senior Instrument Scientist will report to the Engineering Materials Group Leader in the Chemistry and Engineering Materials Division (CEMD), and will be expected to manage research activities on the beamline, including outside users and internal research, and coordinate activities of the GP-SANS team, which includes scientists and support staff from across the NScD.

The GP-SANS instrument is optimized to provide information about structure and interaction in materials in the size range of 0.5 – 200 nm, and supports a diverse science community, attracting scientists from all over the world, carrying out world-class research in soft matter, hard matter, and magnetic systems. Detailed information on the instrument is given in Wignall et al., “The 40 m general purpose small-angle neutron scattering instrument at Oak Ridge National Laboratory”, Journal of Applied Crystallography, 45, 990-998, (2012).

Job description

Major Duties/Responsibilities

The Senior Instrument Scientist will influence the technical direction of a multidisciplinary team requiring coordination of scientists, engineers, and supporting crafts across multiple organizations. This person will serve as primary point of contact for setting instrument upgrade and development priorities. This position will make GP-SANS available to the DOE BES general user program reliably and with capabilities and ease-of-use which are continuously improving in accordance with NScD scientific priorities.

Research Activities: As a member of CEMD, will have a personal research program that fits with the division mission, and will work to expand the capabilities and utilization of GP-SANS for chemistry, materials science, and engineering.

User Support: Must support a truly general program including structural materials, geophysics, engineered nanocomposites and nanostructures, ceramics, structure/phase changes under extreme conditions, etc. Works with internal and external users to deliver scientific publications from user projects.

Instrument Development: Champions developments in instrumentation, sample environment, software technique and theory especially for 2-D and/or anisotropic scattering.

Safety: Maintains a culture of working safely at the instrument. Actively participates in improvements to safety procedures and controls.

Work Directions and Interfaces
This position will report to the Engineering Materials group leader in the Chemistry and Engineering Materials Division. Collaborates with science programs in the Chemistry and Engineering Materials, Quantum Condensed Matter, Biology and Soft Matter, and Neutron Data Analysis and Visualization Divisions. Works closely with the research staff in the Biology and Soft Matter Division assigned to the GP-SANS team. Coordinates GP-SANS instrumentation and software development and upgrades.

Authority/Approval Levels
Provides work direction to GPSANS team. Interfaces effectively with line management organizations responsible for team leads, scientific associates, technicians, work coordinators, technical professional and technical support personnel within guidelines established by the respective division directors. Responsible for effective and safe operation of the GP-SANS beamline at HFIR.

Measures of Effectiveness

  • Key positions are filled by quality staff that are motivated and retained. Commitment to diversity is demonstrated.
  • Scientific impact of instruments and programs are recognized by stakeholders and the international scientific community (e.g., number and quality of users and number of publications).
  • Instrument development and commissioning plan is completed, reviewed, and maintained.
  • User program is continually developed, broadening the application and impact of neutron sciences across a range of disciplines, and particularly on research areas relevant to the Chemistry and Engineering Materials Division.

Requested Profile

Qualifications Required
Ph.D. in physics, materials science/engineering, or closely related discipline. Experience with neutron scattering or neutron diffraction techniques. Excellent verbal and written communication skills.

Qualifications Desired
Preference will be given to candidates with research interests in hard matter (chemistry/materials science) to complement existing instrument team expertise in complex fluids, polymers, and biophysics/structural biology. Experience with sample environments such as high temperature (>500 K), low temperature (<50 K), high magnetic field (> 0.5 T), high pressure (> 1 kbar), and/or mechanical load frames. Experience with independent operation of a SANS or SAXS instrument. Experience supporting users at a major user facility. Experience across multiple disciplines (chemistry, materials science, condensed matter).

How to Apply

This position will remain open for a minimum of 5 days after which it will close when a qualified candidate is identified and/or hired.

We accept Word(.doc, .docx), Excel(.xls, .xlsx), PowerPoint(.ppt, .pptx), Adobe(.pdf), Rich Text Format(.rtf), HTML and text files(.txt) up to 2MB in size. Resumes from third party vendors will not be accepted; these resumes will be deleted and the candidates submitted will not be considered for employment.

If you have trouble applying for a position, please email

Notice: If the position requires a Security Clearance, reviews and tests for the absence of any illegal drug as defined in 10 CFR 707.4 will be conducted by the employer and a background investigation by the Federal government may be required to obtain an access authorization prior to employment and subsequent reinvestigations may be required.

If the position is covered by the Counterintelligence Evaluation Program regulations at 10 CFR 709, a counterintelligence evaluation may include a counterintelligence-scope polygraph examination.

ORNL is an equal opportunity employer. All qualified applicants, including individuals with disabilities and protected veterans, are encouraged to apply. UT-Battelle is an E-Verify Employer.

28. February 2015
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