Scientific Engineering Associate

Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory
Berkeley, California
Salary is commensurate with experience.
Jun 06, 2018
Jul 06, 2018
Field of specialization
Work Function
Job Type
Full time

Scientific Engineering Associate - 85148

Organization: MF-Molecular Foundry


Berkeley Lab’s Molecular Foundry Division ( has an opening for a Scientific Engineering Associate or Senior Scientific Engineering Associate. The Molecular Foundry is a Department of Energy-funded nanoscience research facility that provides users from around the world with access to cutting-edge expertise and instrumentation in a collaborative, multidisciplinary environment. As one of the seven facilities in the Molecular Foundry, the Organic and Macromolecular Synthesis Facility serves a broad user community in materials science by supporting the design and synthesis of organic and hybrid materials and providing training and assistance on a matrix of interdisciplinary instrumentation.


Diversity, equity, and inclusion are core values at the Molecular Foundry. Therefore, we seek candidates whose research, past employment, or service has prepared them to contribute to our commitment to diversity and inclusion. Our excellence can only be fully realized by staff who share our commitment to these values. Successful candidates for our staff position will demonstrate either potential to contribute or evidence of a commitment to equity and inclusion.


The main activities of the incumbent include: Work with the staff and users of the Molecular Foundry to provide multifunctional technical expertise and support in the synthesis, characterization and manipulation of organic molecules, macromolecules and complex assemblies. Provide safety oversight of laboratory activities, including but not limited to qualification and authorization or others to perform work, assessing newly introduced hazards such as new chemicals or upscaling of experiments, and chemical waste generation/disposal. With limited direction, resolve complex technical problems and provide support services to users and projects engaged in the scientific activity of the Facility. Supervise and guide the activities of users and staff in the Organic Facility. Apply a broad range of technical concepts to design, develop, characterize and process organic materials and organic-inorganic hybrid materials. Engage in the maintenance and update of Work Planning and Control (WPC) Activities in the Organic Facility to apply engineered and administrative tools for safe work planning. Train and assist users in the proper and safe use of facility equipment while maintaining a safe working environment. 


Scientific Engineering Associate (Level 1) Specific Responsibilities:

• Provide multifunctional technical expertise and support in organic and macromolecular nanostructures synthesis and characterization. 

• Schedule, coordinate and direct technical support requirements as needed, including equipment installation, regular maintenance, service contracts etc.  

• Recommend safety protocols for instrument use (standard operating procedures). Train and assist users in the proper and safe use of facility equipment, including but not limited to glove boxes, HPLC, SEC, mass spectrometry, etc. 

• Create and maintain Work Planning and Control (WPC) documentation for specialized tasks/instrumentation that requires specific engineering or administrative controls.

• Coordinate integrated safety management (ISM) at the lab bench whenever work exceeds proposed scope (e.g., scale up or the introduction of more hazardous chemicals).  

• Ensure efficient use of Facility by coordinating scheduling with users and Foundry staff.

• Maintain chemical storages/inventory to support the synthesis efforts.

• Maintain detailed and accurate laboratory/experimental logs, notebooks and computer databases including all user-assisted operations.  

• Oversee laboratory safety and help maintain a safe and inclusive working environment for everyone. 


In addition to the above, Sr. Scientific Engineering Associate (Level 2) Specific Responsibilities:

Apply a broad range of technical concepts to develop new synthetic approaches, multi-step organic syntheses, and analytical techniques for the characterization and purification of a variety of organic compounds. 

• Participate in analysis of experimental results and in experimental design, and use independent judgment to provide resolution for a diverse range of complex technical problems.

• Provide input for the selection, maintenance and upgrade of scientific instruments, hardware and software.

• Serve as backup equipment managers to cross-train users on different instruments to support a broader range of activities as necessary.

• Help promote results discovered in the Facility via presenting results of independent or team-generated research at conferences and in publications in scientific journals.

• Take a leading role in Safety at the Organic Facility, the Molecular Foundry Division, and the Lab.


Scientific Engineering Associate Required Qualifications: 

• B.S. with two years work experience, M.S. or Ph.D. in chemistry, polymer science, materials science or related fields.

• Experience in organic synthesis, polymer chemistry or materials science.

• Research and/or user facility experience.

• Demonstrated experience in synthesis, analysis and characterization of small molecules and/or macromolecules.

• Excellent analytical and interpersonal skills.

• Experience in ensuring safety in a diverse work environment.

• Ability to work in a team and interact effectively with colleagues across the Molecular Foundry.


In addition to the above, Sr. SEA qualifications include:

• Experience analyzing technical problems and troubleshooting technical equipment.

• Demonstrated ability to evaluate research proposals.

• Demonstrated safety awareness with a strong understanding of positive safety culture.

• Demonstrated leadership experience and ability to work with a diverse research team.


The posting shall remain open until the position is filled, however for full consideration, please apply by close of business on July 1, 2018.



• This is a full time career appointment.

• Full-time, M-F, exempt (monthly paid) from overtime pay.

• Salary is commensurate with experience.

• This position may be subject to a background check. Any convictions will be evaluated to determine if they directly relate to the responsibilities and requirements of the position. Having a conviction history will not automatically disqualify an applicant from being considered for employment.

• Work will be primarily performed at Lawrence Berkeley National Lab, 1 Cyclotron Road, Berkeley, CA.


How To Apply

Apply directly online at and follow the on-line instructions to complete the application process.


Berkeley Lab (LBNL. addresses the world’s most urgent scientific challenges by advancing sustainable energy, protecting human health, creating new materials, and revealing the origin and fate of the universe. Founded in 1931, Berkeley Lab’s scientific expertise has been recognized with 13 Nobel prizes. The University of California manages Berkeley Lab for the U.S. Department of Energy’s Office of Science.


Equal Employment Opportunity: Berkeley Lab is an Equal Opportunity/Affirmative Action Employer. All qualified applicants will receive consideration for employment without regard to race, color, religion, sex, sexual orientation, gender identity, national origin, disability, age, or protected veteran status. Berkeley Lab is in compliance with the Pay Transparency Nondiscrimination Provision under 41 CFR 60-1.4 ( Click here ( to view the poster: "Equal Employment Opportunity is the Law".