Pacific Northwest National Laboratory Jobs

Job Information

Pacific Northwest National Laboratory Physicist in RICHLAND, Washington

Organization and Job ID

Job ID: 309871

Directorate: National Security Directorate

Division: Signature Sciences and Technology

Group: Radiation Detection and Nuclear Sciences

Job Description

The Detection Physics group focuses on the development of detection systems and data analysis techniques for a variety of missions ranging from fundamental physics to national security. Projects within the research group range from highly applied projects in support of international treaties and national security to fundamental science projects in the areas of nuclear science and novel sensor technology development.

The DP group is seeking one or more mid-career scientists or engineers to contribute to a wide variety of research, development efforts involving low-level radiation detection systems, methodologies and algorithms for threat detection and isotope identification, and data analysis. The successful candidate should have experience in research and / or testing projects or programs. In addition, the candidate should have a demonstrated ability to lead technical tasks, for example, writing proposals, serving as a PI/PM on small to moderate projects and building teams to execute the tasks. This position may include experimental and theoretical studies with applications including nuclear nonproliferation and treaty verification, ultra-low background detection and fundmenal physics.

The hiring level will be determined based on the education, experience and skill set of the successful candidate based on the following:

Level III: Principle Investigator on small to moderate projects and/or major project tasks. Integrates intellectual and technical capabilities of work teams. Enhances technical/professional skills of junior staff through active mentoring and training. Generates ideas for new proposals and participates in business development activities. Demonstrates ability to acquire funding for self with programmatic impact at the sector and division level. Builds effective project teams with membership across a group, S&E domain and/or directorate.

Level IV: Principle Investigator on multiple or significantly complex, and or high risk project or tasks and/or involving multiple tasks, capabilities, and organizations. Develops, and realizes new significant project opportunities, leading the development of technical sections of large proposals. Takes lead in scope, schedule, and budget for projects or large tasks. Demonstrates ability to acquire funding for self and task level teams. Leads organizational teams that proactively identify and promote new capabilities within a division and S&E domain, and advance the directorate strategy.

Minimum Qualifications

• Bachelor's degree with at least 5 years of experience or a Master's degree with 3 years of experience or a PhD with at least 1 year of experience are required.

Preferred Qualifications

• Bachelor's degree with at least 7 years of experience or a Master's degree with 5 years of experience or a PhD with at least 3 years of experience are preferred.

• Degree in nuclear engineering, physics, nuclear engineering, chemistry, or other field with a research emphasis on nuclear instrumentation is preferred.

• Previous experience working at a DOE National Lab is preferred.

• Strong interpersonal skills and the ability to collaborate effectively on diverse, interdisciplinary teams

• Excellent written and oral communication skills

• Experience managing tasks with budget and deadline requirements

• Previous technical experience that may include one or more of the following

o Experience Developing Radiation Detection instrumentation for nuclear nonproliferation

o Experience using gamma-spectrometry systems for radionuclide detection, preferably high-purity germanium detectors. This includes the setup, operation and analysis of data.

o Experience with advanced data analysis techniques to include the development or application of machine learning algorithms to relevant datasets.

o Experience with noble gas detectors (gas proportional counters and cryogenic noble liquid scintillators) and understand the challenges to low-background techniques associated with these technologies.

o Experience with clean room, low-background measurements, and gas chemistry

Equal Employment Opportunity

Battelle Memorial Institute (BMI) at Pacific Northwest National Laboratory (PNNL) is an Affirmative Action/Equal Opportunity Employer and supports diversity in the workplace. All employment decisions are made without regard to race, color, religion, sex, national origin, age, disability, veteran status, marital or family status, sexual orientation, gender identity, or genetic information. All BMI staff must be able to demonstrate the legal right to work in the United States. BMI is an E-Verify employer. Learn more at

Other Information

  • Laboratory work with vacuum, pressurized gases, cryogenics, radiation sources and control/measurement systems

  • Occasional travel

This position requires the ability to obtain and maintain a federal security clearance.


  • U.S. Citizenship

  • Background Investigation: Applicants selected will be subject to a Federal background investigation and must meet eligibility requirements for access to classified matter in accordance 10 CFR 710, Appendix B.

  • Drug Testing: All Security Clearance (L or Q) positions will be considered by the Department of Energy to be Testing Designated Positions which means that they are subject to applicant, random, and for cause drug testing. In addition, applicants must be able to demonstrate non-use of illegal drugs, including marijuana, for the 12 consecutive months preceding completion of the requisite Questionnaire for National Security Positions (QNSP).

Note: Applicants will be considered ineligible for security clearance processing by the U.S. Department of Energy until non-use of illegal drugs, including marijuana, for 12 consecutive months can be demonstrated.

Directorate: National Security Dir

Job Category: Scientists/Scientific Support

Group: Detection Physics

Opening Date: 2019-10-18

Closing Date: 2019-11-01