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Postdoctoral Research Associate - Extreme Environment Materials Processing

37830, Oak Ridge
Candidates may discuss with their recruiter at a later date
Closing date
Jun 12, 2024

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Requisition Id 13044 


We are seeking a post-doctoral researcher who will focus on synthesis of organic and organometallic compounds with applications in harsh environment materials.  The post-doctoral researcher will also be involved in developing formulations and processes for infiltrating preceramic polymer and organometallic compounds in fiber based preforms to manufacture ultrahigh temperature compounds (UHTC’s) structures. Knowledge of the organic chemistry, synthetic methods, and the skill level to work with air and/or water reactive compounds will be a mandatory requirement.  Additional experience with composite fabrication and basic knowledge of mechanical testing associated with composite material evaluations will be considered a plus.     


As part of our research team, you will be among team members based at the Manufacturing Demonstration Facility (MDF), the Department of Energy’s (DOE’s) first facility established to provide affordable and convenient access to R&D expertise, facilities, and tools to facilitate rapid adoption of advanced manufacturing technologies including additive manufacturing of alloys, ceramics, and composites. To improve the capabilities of this facility with ceramics and carbon/carbon additive manufacturing, you will help aid the effort to maintain ceramics and composites programs for strategic energy applications. You will perform the fundamental science to improve materials selection and processing of ceramics and carbon-based composites with traditional and additive manufacturing platforms of various and numerous kinds; publish original peer reviewed research articles; and supervise students, technicians and staff.

Major Duties/Responsibilities: 

  • Work to develop C/C and CMC materials and the processes for manufacturing UHTC and advanced characterization levels
  • Research high temperature materials for advanced and additive manufacturing in energy applications
  • Able to perform chemical synthesis of preceramic polymers, organometallics, knowledge of thermoset curing.
  • Present and report research results and publish scientific results in peer-reviewed journals in a timely manner
  • Ensure compliance with environment, safety, health and quality program requirements
  • Maintain strong dedication to the implementation and perpetuation of safe laboratory practices, values and ethics.
  • Deliver ORNL's mission by aligning behaviors, priorities, and interactions with our core values of Impact, Integrity, Teamwork, Safety, and Service. Promote diversity, equity, inclusion, and accessibility by fostering a respectful workplace - in how we treat one another, work together, and measure success.

Basic Qualifications:

  • A PhD in chemistry, materials science, ceramic engineering, chemical engineering, or a closely related field completed within the last 5 years.
  • A minimum of 2 years of chemical synthesis of organometallics capability commensurate with the posted requirements.
  • Experience in the following areas: Polymer and catalysis/organometallic compound synthesis, familiarity with air/water reactive compounds, glovebox experience, high temperature composites curing and processing knowledge.

Preferred Qualifications:

  • Excellent record of productive and creative research as demonstrated by publications in peer-reviewed journals
  • Excellent written and oral communication skills and the ability to communicate to an international, scientific audience
  • Motivated self-starter with the ability to work independently and to participate creatively in collaborative teams across the laboratory 
  • Ability to function well in a fast-paced research environment, set priorities to accomplish multiple tasks within deadlines, and adapt to ever changing needs

Special Requirements:

Applicants cannot have received their Ph.D. more than five years prior to the date of application and must complete all degree requirements before starting their appointment. The appointment length will be up to 24 months with the potential for extension. Initial appointments and extensions are subject to performance and availability of funding.

Please provide a list of publications when applying for this position. Three letters of reference are required when applying to this position. You may upload these directly to your application or have them sent to with the position title and number referenced in the subject line.

Instructions to upload documents to your candidate profile:

  • Login to your account via
  • View Profile
  • Under the My Documents section, select Add a Document

 This position requires access to technology that is subject to export control requirements. Successful candidates must be qualified for such access without an export control license. 

Benefits at ORNL: 

ORNL offers competitive pay and benefits programs to attract and retain talented people! The laboratory offers many employee benefits, including medical and retirement plans and flexible work hours, to help you and your family live happy and healthy. Employee amenities such as on-site fitness, banking, and cafeteria facilities are also provided for convenience.

Other benefits include the following: Prescription Drug Plan, Dental Plan, Vision Plan, 401(k) Retirement Plan, Contributory Pension Plan, Life Insurance, Disability Benefits, Generous Vacation and Holidays, Parental Leave, Legal Insurance with Identity Theft Protection, Employee Assistance Plan, Flexible Spending Accounts, Health Savings Accounts, Wellness Programs, Educational Assistance, Relocation Assistance, and Employee Discounts.

If you have difficulty using the online application system or need an accommodation to apply due to a disability, please email: or call 1.866.963.9545.

This position will remain open for a minimum of 5 days after which it will close when a qualified candidate is identified and/or hired.

We accept Word (.doc, .docx), Adobe (unsecured .pdf), Rich Text Format (.rtf), and HTML (.htm, .html) up to 5MB in size. Resumes from third party vendors will not be accepted; these resumes will be deleted and the candidates submitted will not be considered for employment.

If you have trouble applying for a position, please email

ORNL is an equal opportunity employer. All qualified applicants, including individuals with disabilities and protected veterans, are encouraged to apply.  UT-Battelle is an E-Verify employer.

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