R&D, Geosciences Engineer - Computational Models (Experienced)

Carlsbad, New Mexico
Feb 25, 2021
Mar 27, 2021
Job Type
Full time

Posting Duration

This posting will be open for application submissions for a minimum of seven (7) calendar days, including the ‘posting date’. Sandia reserves the right to extend the posting date at any time.

What Your Job Will Be Like

Are you passionate about the work you do and want to join a multi-disciplinary team of expert scientists and engineers?

We are seeking a dedicated and hardworking Geoscience Engineer with expertise in the areas of uncertainty quantification/risk assessment, systems engineering, multiphase flow and transport in porous media, or environmental engineering. Work will focus on the development and maintenance of computational models and tools for analyzing the long-term containment performance of geologic nuclear waste disposal systems.

On any given day, you may be called on to:

  • Perform scientific investigations into physical processes related to the geosciences, including brine and gas flows in porous media, radionuclide transport through geologic layers, gas generation due to material degradation, and the sensitivity of calculated compliance results to changes in these processes.
  • Perform probabilistic simulations of the subsurface repository and surrounding environment. Develop process model simulation tools, extending the flexibility of current codes.
  • Write requirements for, test, validate, and document codes in accordance with NQA-1 and our DOE-specific QA requirements. Adapt and apply current software QA standard methodologies and frameworks to simplify the overall QA process while fulfilling NQA-1 requirements.
  • Author reports detailing the impact of proposed changes on long-term waste containment and regulatory compliance. Communicate insights and options to the DOE customer and the EPA federal regulator in a concise way that enables action.
  • Be an integral contributor to a diverse team in the development of technical publications and presentations.

About Our Team

The Waste Isolation Pilot Plant, located outside of Carlsbad, New Mexico, is the nation’s only licensed and operating deep geologic repository for the disposal of transuranic nuclear waste. The WIPP Performance Assessment and Decision Analysis Department (8881) at Sandia’s Carlsbad remote site designs, executes, analyzes, documents, and defends calculations (1) used to assess the compliance of WIPP’s long-term waste containment performance with federal regulations and (2) used to assess the impact of DOE proposed/planned changes to WIPP’s design on its compliance. The group is also engaged in modernizing the simulation codes and run control system to allow for more general repository designs and assumptions.

About Sandia

Sandia National Laboratories is the nation’s premier science and engineering lab for national security and technology innovation, with teams of specialists focused on cutting-edge work in a broad array of areas. Some of the main reasons we love our jobs:
• Challenging work with amazing impact that contributes to security, peace, and freedom worldwide
• Extraordinary co-workers
• Some of the best tools, equipment, and research facilities in the world
• Career advancement and enrichment opportunities
• Flexible work arrangements for many positions include 9/80 (work 80 hours every two weeks, with every other Friday off) and 4/10 (work 4 ten-hour days each week) compressed workweeks, part-time work, and telecommuting (a mix of onsite work and working from home)
• Generous vacations, strong medical and other benefits, competitive 401k, learning opportunities, relocation assistance and amenities aimed at creating a solid work/life balance*

World-changing technologies. Life-changing careers. Learn more about Sandia at: http://www.sandia.gov
*These benefits vary by job classification.


All qualified applicants will receive consideration for employment without regard to race, color, religion, sex, sexual orientation, gender identity, national origin, age, disability, or veteran status and any other protected class under state or federal law.

Qualifications We Require

  • Bachelor's degree in a relevant STEM field (Chemical/Mechanical/Nuclear/Petroleum Engineering, Computer Science, Systems Engineering, Applied Mathematics, Statistics, or similar) plus at least 5 years of relevant experience; OR equivalent combination of education and experience
  • Numerical/scientific computer programming experience
  • Experience developing numerical software in at least one of the following: Python, FORTRAN, C/C++ and working with HPC Linux environments
  • Ability to acquire and maintain a DOE L-level security clearance

You reside in or have the ability to reside in Carlsbad, New Mexico.

Qualifications We Desire

  • Master's or PhD in a relevant field as listed above
  • Experience applying uncertainty quantification/risk assessment to engineering problems
  • Experience crafting and performing simulation-based studies to answer specific questions
  • Experience applying systems engineering methods to ensure software QA
  • Experience performing engineering analyses and software development following regulated QA guidelines and requirements
  • Proven experience in probability, computer science, geosciences, or nuclear chemistry
  • Strong communication and presentation skills
  • Ability to work both autonomously and in a team environment
  • Proven problem solving skills

Security Clearance

Sandia is required by DOE to conduct a pre-employment drug test and background review that includes checks of personal references, credit, law enforcement records, and employment/education verifications. Applicants for employment need to be able to obtain and maintain a DOE L-level security clearance, which requires U.S. citizenship. If you hold more than one citizenship (i.e., of the U.S. and another country), your ability to obtain a security clearance may be impacted.

Applicants offered employment with Sandia are subject to a federal background investigation to meet the requirements for access to classified information or matter if the duties of the position require a DOE security clearance. Substance abuse or illegal drug use, falsification of information, criminal activity, serious misconduct or other indicators of untrustworthiness can cause a clearance to be denied or terminated by the DOE, resulting in the inability to perform the duties assigned and subsequent termination of employment.