Postdoctoral Researcher in Resonance Ionization Mass Spectrometry

Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory Livermore, CA , United States

Published Mon, 11/29/2021 - 9:22 AM Expiration Sun, 02/27/2022 - 12:00 AM or until the posting is filled

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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.

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Job Description

We have an opening for a Postdoctoral Researcher position. The successful candidate will perform Resonance Ionization Mass Spectrometry (RIMS) and Secondary Ion Mass Spectrometry (SIMS) of cosmochemistry, environmental, and anthropogenic samples for chemical and isotope abundance measurements to support LLNL programs in nuclear materials characterization and cosmochemistry. You will actively participate in innovative research utilizing state of the art measurement techniques as well as further develop and maintain these techniques and help to develop and build new instruments. This position is in the Nuclear and Chemical Sciences Division supporting the Chemical and Isotopic Signatures Group.


In this role you will:

  • Develop new experimental techniques to analyze novel samples by RIMS and extend the state of the art, including the development of new RIMS instrumentation.
  • Align, operate, and maintain custom lasers for use in laser spectroscopy and resonance ionization, especially tunable laser systems with emphasis on laser-atom interactions.
  • Independently prepare, analyze, interpret and present results from complex environmental and anthropogenic samples for chemical and isotope abundance measurements including but not limited to U, Th, Pu, and REE using state-of-the art instrumentation including RIMS, SIMS, FE-SEM/EDS.
  • Develop and pursue innovative research applying surface mass spectrometry techniques, i.e. RIMS and SIMS, to novel applications.
  • Contribute to the conception, design, and execution of advanced research to address problems in cosmochemistry and nuclear materials characterization.
  • Collaborate with other scientists and technical personnel to accomplish research goals.
  • Publish research results in peer-reviewed scientific or technical journals and present results at external conferences, seminars, and/or technical meetings.
  • Perform other duties as assigned.


  • PhD in physical chemistry, analytical chemistry, experimental physics, earth sciences, or related field.
  • Experience in laser systems, ion optical systems and data acquisition systems.
  • Familiarity with the fields of surface mass spectrometry and laser spectroscopy, good understanding of the current state of knowledge in these fields.
  • Experience in experimental design and execution[LJ1] , and the ability to work independently as well as in multidisciplinary research teams.
  • Experience preparing and analyzing environmental and anthropogenic samples for radionuclides and stable isotopes ranging in concentrations from trace to high-level.
  • Experience in programming for data processing and instrument control.
  • Demonstrated ability to develop independent research projects as demonstrated through publication of peer-reviewed literature.
  • Proficient written and verbal communication skills necessary to deliver presentations and prepare written publications, and reports.

Qualifications we desire

  • Publication record in peer-reviewed literature with experience presenting research results to a large audience.
  • Experience in statistical analysis and uncertainty quantification.
  • Experience programming in Python, C++, or similar environment.

Additional Information

Why Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory?

  • Included in 2021 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

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LLNL demonstrates its commitment to public safety by requiring that all new Laboratory employees be immunized against COVID-19 unless granted an accommodation under applicable state or federal law. This requirement will apply to all new hires including those who will be working on site, as well as those who will be teleworking.

Security Clearance

LLNL is a Department of Energy (DOE) and National Nuclear Security Administration (NNSA) Laboratory.  Some positions will require a DOE L or Q clearance (please reference Security Clearance requirement above).  If you are selected and a clearance is required, 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.  For additional information please see DOE Order 472.2.

Pre-Employment Drug Test

External applicant(s) selected for this position will be required to 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.

Pre-Placement Medical Exam

A job related pre-placement medical examination may be required.

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.

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