[Neutron] Postdoc Opportunity in Neutron Scattering Investigations of Thermoelectric Materials at ORNL

Delaire, Olivier A. delaireoa at ornl.gov
Wed Mar 21 17:55:55 CET 2012

We are seeking candidates for a postdoctoral position in the area of thermoelectric materials at Oak Ridge National Laboratory, TN. The position will be open in July 2012. The details of the project and position are listed below.

Please send inquiries and your resume in electronic form (pdf preferred) to:

Olivier Delaire
ORNL, Materials Science and Technology Division, Neutron and X-ray Scattering Group
Email: delaireoa at ornl.gov
Tel: 865-576-4644

Project Description:
Postdoc position in the Neutron and X-ray Scattering Group at ORNL (Materials Science and Technology Division), in collaboration with the S3TEC Energy Frontier Research Center at MIT. The primary focus of this project is to investigate phonons in thermoelectric materials, using primarily inelastic neutron and x-ray scattering techniques, in order to elucidate the microscopic processes governing thermal transport in these materials [1,2,3,4]. Phonon anharmonicity, electron-phonon coupling, and scattering of phonons by lattice defects will be quantified and modeled, in order to gain fundamental insights and assess their practical relevance. The project will make full use of the Spallation Neutron Source (SNS) and the High Flux Isotope Reactor (HFIR) at Oak Ridge National Laboratory, which are two of the brightest neutron sources in the world (http://neutrons.ornl.gov/). Additional investigative tools will include x-ray scattering, calorimetry, Raman and IR spectroscopy, and computer simulations of dynamics (density functional theory, molecular dynamics). The successful candidate will be based at Oak Ridge National Laboratory and will collaborate with the S3TEC Energy Frontier Research Center at MIT (http://s3tec.mit.edu/).

[1] O. Delaire, J. Ma, K. Marty, A. F. May, M. A. McGuire, M.-H. Du, D. J. Singh, A. Podlesnyak, G. Ehlers, M. Lumsden, B. C. Sales, “Giant Anharmonic Phonon Scattering in PbTe”, Nature Materials 10, 614 (2011).
[2] O. Delaire, K. Marty , M. B. Stone, P. R. C. Kent, M. S. Lucas, D. L. Abernathy, D. Mandrus, B. C. Sales, “Phonon softening and metallization of a narrow-gap semiconductor by thermal disorder”, Proc. Natl. Acad. Sci. USA 108, 4725 (2011).
[3] B. C. Sales, O. Delaire, M. A. McGuire, and A. F. May, “Thermoelectric properties of FeSi and Related Alloys: Evidence for Strong Electron-Phonon Coupling”, Phys. Rev. B 83, 125209 (2011).
[4] A.F. May, M. A. McGuire, J. Ma, O. Delaire, A. Huq, D. J. Singh, W. Cai, H. Wang, “Thermoelectric transport properties of CaMg2Bi2, EuMg2Bi2, and YbMg2Bi2”, Phys. Rev. B 85, 035202 (2012).

Major Duties/Responsibilities:

·      Participate in and conduct independent and collaborative neutron scattering experiments at SNS and HFIR.

·      Participate in characterization of samples and/or analysis of model simulations as necessary to pursue research.

·      Publish research results in scientific journals and present results in conferences.

·      Maintain a strong commitment to the implementation and perpetuation of values and ethics. Ensure compliancewith environment, safety, health and quality program requirements.


Candidates with a recent Ph.D. in Physics, Materials Science, Chemistry, or related fields will be considered. Demonstrated expertise in materials physics and experience with neutron and/or x-ray scattering are required, including a strong track record of publications. Experience in the fields of lattice dynamics, transport properties, and computer simulations of microscopic dynamics (especially first-principels simulations) will be an advantage. The candidate will demonstrate strong written and oral communication skills and the desire to work in a team environment on scientifically challenging problems. Applicants cannot have received the most recent degree more than five years prior to the date of application and must complete all degree requirements before starting theirappointment.

Additional Information:

·      ORNL Materials Science and Technology Division: http://www.ms.ornl.gov/

·      MIT S3TEC EFRC: http://s3tec.mit.edu/

How to Apply:

Please contact Dr Olivier Delaire<mailto:delaireoa at ornl.gov> (delaireoa at ornl.gov<mailto:delaireoa at ornl.gov>) for further information about the position and the application process.

Candidates should apply online:


(position reference ORNL12-07-MSTD)

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