Postdoctoral Research Associate - Quantum Materials

Updated: about 1 month ago
Location: Oak Ridge, TENNESSEE

Requisition Id 6049 


Our Correlated Electron Materials Group seeks a Postdoctoral Research Associate to help advance our understanding of quantum materials (particularly in quantum magnetism) by using materials synthesis, thermodynamic and transport property characterizations, and neutron scattering techniques.  The core scientific aims of the project are to understand how frustration and competing interactions influence quantum magnetism, and to identify and characterize novel spin textures and their excited states.  As a postdoc, you’ll have the opportunity to collaborate with researchers from diverse backgrounds, including condensed matter theorists and scientists performing neutron diffraction and scattering at the Spallation Neutron Source (SNS) and the High Flux Isotope Reactor (HFIR).  This position resides in the Materials Science and Technology Division (MSTD), Physical Sciences Directorate (PSD) at Oak Ridge National Laboratory (ORNL).  


Major Duties/Responsibilities:

As part of our team, you will support efforts to understand various collective phenomena in quantum materials.  You will perform the synthesis (including single crystal growth) and characterization of a variety of known and novel materials.  You will drive the project forward by identifying promising material systems and performing detailed experimental investigations.  While you will be responsible for developing high-quality samples, you will also be expected to take part in neutron scattering experiments.  As such, this position provides the opportunity to make significant contributions in the field of quantum materials while refining your existing experimental skills and developing new ones.


Other Responsibilities

  • Present and report research results and publish scientific results in peer-reviewed journals in a timely fashion
  • Keep an orderly and informative laboratory workspace and notebook
  • Ensure compliance with environment, safety, health and quality program requirements
  • Maintain a strong dedication to the implementation and perpetuation of values and ethics


Basic Qualifications:

  • A PhD in physics, applied physics, material science, chemical or electrical engineering, or a related discipline completed within the last five years.
  • Background in experimental materials physics research, including materials synthesis, laboratory-based characterization and/or neutron scattering.


Preferred Qualifications:

  • Familiarity with the health and safety hazards associated with an experimental condensed matter laboratory that houses an extensive synthesis effort.
  • Experience with single crystal growth using molten fluxes, chemical vapor transport, directional solidification, and/or via optical floating zone furnaces. 
  • Skilled in x-ray and/or neutron diffraction data collection and analysis.
  • Experience with characterization and analysis of thermodynamic properties, with an emphasis on magnetic behavior and characterization through AC and DC probes of the bulk magnetization and specific heat capacity.
  • Characterization and analysis of transport properties (electrical, thermal, galvanomagnetic, thermomagnetic, thermoelectric). 
  • Experience writing user proposals for beam times at National Laboratory User Facilities.
  • Experience using National Laboratory User Facilities programs, particularly for diffraction, diffuse elastic scattering, or inelastic scattering experiments.


Additional Information:

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 and can be uploaded to your profile or emailed directly to  Please include the title of the position in the subject line.


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.

Nearest Major Market: Knoxville

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