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Forensic Taggants - Postdoctoral Researcher

Entry Level | Full-time
Postdoctoral/Fellowship | livermore, CA | 03/04/2021

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Company Description

Join us and make YOUR mark on the World!

Are you interested in joining some of the brightest talent in the world to strengthen the United States’ security? Come join Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory (LLNL) where our employees apply their expertise to create solutions for BIG ideas that make our world a better place.

We are looking for individuals that demonstrate an understanding of working in partnership with team peers, who engage, advocate, and contribute to building an inclusive culture, and provide expertise to solve challenging problems.

Job Description

We have an opening for a Postdoctoral Research Staff Member to develop and pursue innovative research in the development of stable metal isotope taggants for oxide and metallic nuclear materials for nuclear forensics. The successful candidate will develop incorporation strategies for stable metal isotope taggants into uranium oxides, and perform spatially resolved in-situ analysis to investigate the behavior of deliberately introduced taggants during fuel fabrication.  The successful candidate will also identify and develop taggant signatures in various nuclear fuels, and investigate morphological and microstructural characteristics of tagged nuclear materials.  This position is in Chemical and Isotopic Signatures group of the Nuclear and Chemical Sciences Division

In this role you will:

  • Develop and pursue innovative research addressing advanced nuclear forensics and image analysis and and/or machine learning approaches.
  • Develop and execute strategy for incorporation of multi-element transition metal taggants into nuclear fuel simulant materials on the bench scale
  • Determine the matrix-taggant interaction during sintering and fabrication of surrogate nuclear fuels and uranium oxides fuels using scanning electron microscopy and EDS techniques.
  • Document and publish research results in peer-reviewed scientific publications and present results at external conferences, seminars and/or technical meetings.
  •  Collaborate with other scientists and technical personnel to accomplish research goals.
  • Perform other duties as assigned.


  • Ability to obtain and maintain a U.S. DOE Q-level security clearance which requires U.S. citizenship.
  • PhD in Earth Science, Geochemistry, Material Science, Chemistry or related field.
  • Experience in handling uranium, trace plutonium, and working with nuclear fuels.
  • Experience in actinide synthesis and morphological characterization of U, Pu, and Th oxides and nitrates.
  • Experience in optical microscopy and microbeam analytical techniques for materials characterization.
  • Experience in the interpretation of morphological changes in nuclear materials resulting from environmental aging, heating and/or cooling.
  • Proficient verbal and written communication skills necessary to work in a multidisciplinary team environment, author technical and scientific reports and publications, and deliver scientific presentations.
  • Documented publication record in peer-reviewed literature with experience presenting research results to a large audience.

Additional Information

Why Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory?

  • Included in 2020 Best Places to Work by Glassdoor!
  • Work for a premier innovative national Laboratory
  • Comprehensive Benefits Package
  • Flexible schedules (*depending on project needs)
  • Collaborative, creative, inclusive, and fun team environment

Learn more about our company, selection process, position types and security clearances by visiting our Career site

Security Clearance

LLNL is a Department of Energy (DOE) and National Nuclear Security Administration (NNSA) Laboratory.  Most positions will require a DOE L or Q clearance (please reference Security Clearance requirement).  If you are selected, we will initiate a Federal background investigation to determine if you meet eligibility requirements for access to classified information or matter. In addition, all L or Q cleared employees are subject to random drug testing.  An L or Q clearance requires U.S. citizenship.  If you hold multiple citizenships (U.S. and another country), you may be required to renounce your non-U.S. citizenship before a DOE L or Q clearance will be processed/granted.  For additional information please see DOE Order 472.2.

Equal Employment Opportunity

LLNL is an affirmative action and equal opportunity employer that values and hires a diverse workforce. All qualified applicants will receive consideration for employment without regard to race, color, religion, marital status, national origin, ancestry, sex, sexual orientation, gender identity, disability, medical condition, pregnancy, protected veteran status, age, citizenship, or any other characteristic protected by applicable laws.

If you need assistance and/or a reasonable accommodation during the application or the recruiting process, please submit a request via our online form

California Privacy Notice

The California Consumer Privacy Act (CCPA) grants privacy rights to all California residents. The law also entitles job applicants, employees, and non-employee workers to be notified of what personal information LLNL collects and for what purpose. The Employee Privacy Notice can be accessed here.

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