Pacific Northwest National Laboratory Jobs

Job Information

Pacific Northwest National Laboratory Post Doctorate RA - Chemical Physics & Analysis in RICHLAND, Washington

Organization and Job ID

Job ID: 311409

Directorate: Physical & Computational Sciences

Division: Physical Sciences

Group: Chemical Physics & Analysis

Job Description

The Opportunity: Pacific Northwest National Laboratory (PNNL) is a world-class research institution powered by a highly educated, diverse workforce committed to collaboration and work–life balance. Every year, scores of dynamic, driven postdocs come to PNNL to work with renowned researchers on meaningful science, innovations and outcomes for the U.S. Department of Energy and other sponsors; here is your chance to be one of them!

You will contribute to PNNL’s goals in experimental spectroscopy as part of the Lab’s Physical Sciences Division (PSD). As a postdoctoral researcher in the Chemical Physics & Analysis (CPA) group, you will join a talented, multi-investigator team to explore the molecular-level basis and reaction rates of important gas-phase chemical reactions, along with helping derive important gas-phase reference data used by researchers around the world. In the CPA group new opportunities exist for post-doctoral research associates to support research and development in infrared spectroscopy, focusing in particular on quantitative Fourier transform infrared (FTIR) spectral measurements, refractive indices calculations, and infrared laser systems. You will be mentored by prominent researchers as you develop a line of experimental research, working to understand the detailed chemical dynamics of gas-phase reactions and how to monitor them via IR and other spectroscopies. You will also use FTIR measurements, single-angle reflectance methods, ellipsometry, simple transmission measurements and the use of BRDF methods to better understand and better derive the complex refractive indices n and k for solids and liquids. The impact of this research is significant and will provide opportunities to publish in leading scientific journals and participate in scientific conferences. PNNL offers an opportunity to work in state-of-the-art laboratory facilities while allowing time to enjoy the Pacific Northwest region.

The Ideal Candidate : If you are a postdoctoral researcher ready to test your talents and training in physical chemistry and hone your skills at a national laboratory widely recognized for its work in the physical sciences, we want to connect with you! PNNL is committed to fostering a work environment that promotes inclusion, diversity, equity and accountability. We encourage all qualified applicants to apply; you do not need to meet all of the Preferred Qualifications to be considered.

What you will do:

  • Work independently, take initiative, and work on team assignments

  • Lead manuscript development and maintain a strong overall publication record in peer-reviewed scientific literature

  • Interact, communicate, and problem solve with a diverse team of scientists within the CPA group, PSD and across PNNL

  • Present research at technical conferences and project/program review meetings

  • Train and mentor others, mostly junior staff

About PNNL: At PNNL, you will find an exciting research environment and excellent benefits including health insurance, flexible work schedules and telework options. PNNL is located in eastern Washington State—the dry side of Washington known for its stellar outdoor recreation and affordable cost of living. The Lab’s campus is only a 45-minute flight (or 3 hour drive) from Seattle or Portland, and is serviced by the convenient PSC airport, connected to 8 major hubs.

Minimum Qualifications

Candidates must have received a PhD within the past five years (60 months) or within the next 8 months from an accredited college or university.

Preferred Qualifications

Preferred Qualifications, Skills, and/or Training (not all need to be met):

  • Trace gas detection of gas-phase chemicals using either FTIR or (QCL) infrared laser systems.

  • Knowledge of quantitation of gas-phase chemicals using (infrared) spectroscopic methods

  • A background in one or more of the following spectroscopic characterization approaches: Raman and/or IR vibrational spectroscopies with vibrational assignments, quantum cascade infrared lasers (QCLs), time-resolved pump-probe spectroscopies, non-linear optical spectroscopies, imaging methods, infrared hyperspectral imaging.

  • Determination of fundamental optical properties of materials using methods of modern chemical physics including quantitative reflectance spectroscopy, infrared ellipsometery, IR transmission spectroscopy,

  • Modeling and understanding of chemical reactions and/or kinetics

  • Proficiency in wet chemical analytics, solution preparation and handling, chemical characterization

  • Strong verbal and written communications skills

  • A functional grasp of basic thermodynamics and kinetics concepts

  • The ability to adapt, refine, or innovate experimental tools as needed.

Preferred Education/Credential:

  • Ph.D. in Chemistry, Physical Chemistry, Chemical Physics, Physics, Materials Sciences or related field required

  • The qualified candidate must have an academic background in physical chemistry, chemical physics, optics or related field, with a desired research emphasis in infrared spectroscopy. The position requires a solid understanding of sample preparation for spectroscopic analysis, infrared spectral data interpretation, and a strong background in optical instrumentation.

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

Please be aware that the Department of Energy (DOE) prohibits DOE employees and contractors from participation in certain foreign government talent recruitment programs. If you are offered a position at PNNL and are currently a participant in a foreign government talent recruitment program you will be required to disclose this information before your first day of employment.

Directorate: Physical & Computational Sci's

Job Category: Post-Graduates and Post-Docs

Group: Chemical Physics & Analysis

Opening Date: 2020-11-19

Closing Date: 2020-12-09