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Microfluidic Postdoctoral Researcher

Entry Level | Full-time
Engineering | emeryville, CA | 01/11/2024

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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 committed to a diverse and equitable workforce with an inclusive culture that values and celebrates the diversity of our people, talents, ideas, experiences, and perspectives. This is important for continued success of the Laboratory’s mission.

Pay Range

$108,600 - $126,720 Annually

Please note that the pay range information is a general guideline only. Many factors are taken into consideration when setting starting pay including education, experience, the external labor market, and internal equity.

Job Description

We have multiple openings for a Postdoctoral Researcher to join a diverse team that specializes in developing innovative high-throughput microfluidic platforms for synthetic biology applications relevant to biomanufacturing. You will work on multi-disciplinary projects involving synthetic biologists, biochemists, analytical chemists, and engineers to develop miniaturized devices and techniques for high throughput metabolic engineering and gene editing applications. Specific examples of techniques you will perform in microfluidic platforms include assembly of genes, transformation, CRISPR-based engineering, cell culture, and phenotypic assays. The research will involve work with lab-on-a-chip techniques, bioanalytical chemistry, microbial cell culture, and molecular biology techniques including cloning, pathway engineering, gene editing, and protein engineering. These positions will primarily be based at the JBEI facility in Emeryville, CA and are in the Materials Engineering Division (MED) within the Engineering Directorate.

You Will

  • Design and conduct experiments to evaluate microfluidic chip performance and iterate chip design through literature review, fundamental simulation/modeling, and experimental testing.
  • Implement molecular biology processes in microfluidic chips including DNA assembly, transformation, cell culture, and CRISPR/Cas9 editing in collaboration with microbiologists and synthetic biologists.
  • Integrate microfluidic chips with commercial robotic liquid handling workstations.
  • Develop graphical user interfaces for the operation of microfluidic chips.
  • Make scientific presentations at JBEI meetings as well as national and international conferences.
  • Author scientific publications and patent applications.
  • Perform other duties as assigned.


  • PhD degree in Mechanical Engineering, Bioengineering, Electrical Engineering, Chemical Engineering, or a related field.
  • Demonstrated ability to be hands-on in the design, fabrication, and process development of microfluidic devices and systems.
  • Experience in microfluidic device design using AutoCAD or similar software.
  • Basic knowledge and understanding of electrical circuitry, devices, and how to perform electrical device modification and/or development.
  • Proficient verbal and written communication skills to collaborate effectively in a team environment and present and explain technical information.
  • Experience in technical achievement, as evidenced by publications in high-impact scientific journals; and the demonstrated ability to conduct creative, independent research.
  • Ability to travel.

Qualifications We Desire

  • Ability to conduct detailed multiphysics simulations combining fluid dynamic, electrical, and mass transport analysis within COMSOL or other CFD packages.
  • Familiarity with laboratory automation robotics.
  • Clean room microfabrication experience.
  • Fundamental understanding of programming languages and software suites (C++, Python, Matlab).
  • Experience designing printed circuit boards (PCB’s) and general knowledge of PCB manufacturing methods.
  • Experience implementing mechanical devices into a biological laboratory workflow.

Additional Information

All your information will be kept confidential according to EEO guidelines.

Position Information

This is a Postdoctoral appointment with the possibility of extension to a maximum of three years, open to those who have been awarded a PhD at time of hire date.

Why Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory?

Security Clearance

None required.  However, if your assignment is longer than 179 days cumulatively within a calendar year, you must go through the Personal Identity Verification process.  This process includes completing an online background investigation form and receiving approval of the background check.  (This process does not apply to foreign nationals.) 

Pre-Employment Drug Test

External applicant(s) selected for this position must pass a post-offer, pre-employment drug test. This includes testing for use of marijuana as Federal Law applies to us as a Federal Contractor.

How to identify fake job advertisements

Please be aware of recruitment scams where people or entities are misusing the name of Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory (LLNL) to post fake job advertisements. LLNL never extends an offer without a personal interview and will never charge a fee for joining our company. All current job openings are displayed on the Career Page under “Find Your Job” of our website. If you have encountered a job posting or have been approached with a job offer that you suspect may be fraudulent, we strongly recommend you do not respond.

To learn more about recruitment scams:

Equal Employment Opportunity

We are an equal opportunity employer that is committed to providing all with a work environment free of discrimination and harassment. 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.

We invite you to review the Equal Employment Opportunity posters which include EEO is the Law and Pay Transparency Nondiscrimination Provision.

Reasonable Accommodation

Our goal is to create an accessible and inclusive experience for all candidates applying and interviewing at the Laboratory.  If you need a reasonable accommodation during the application or the recruiting process, please use our online form to submit a request. 

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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