Joint Research Faculty at ORNL (JFO)- Clean Energy Manufacturing

Date: Aug 27, 2023

Location: Knoxville, TN, US, 37932

Company: Oak Ridge National Laboratory

Requisition Id 10197 


The University of Tennessee-Oak Ridge Innovation Institute (UT-ORII) is assembling a team of Electrochemical Energy Storage Research Faculty (EESRF) and ORNL staff to collaborate with UT and Oak Ridge National Laboratory researchers in the area of Electrochemical Energy Storage as part of the UT-ORII Convergent Research Initiative ‘Energy Storage’. This Joint research faculty at ORNL (JFO) will be part of this team and will work in collaboration with UT and ORNL researchers at the intersection of energy storage and clean energy manufacturing.


Clean and energy efficient manufacturing of long duration energy storage devices is urgently needed to accelerate the pace of decarbonization. This position is seeking applicants for an individual to lead and execute research in the system level development and manufacturing of long duration electrochemical, electrothermal, and thermal chemical energy storage. The candidate is expected to develop a research program primarily in the areas of 1) Developing long-duration batteries and corresponding prediction tools to identify failure mechanisms and predict lifetime with machine learning; 2) Developing novel technologies for screening or scaling up of high-performance long-duration battery components (e.g. membranes) to further reduce battery cost; 3) Exploring approaches to stabilize battery electrodes; 4) Developing alternative low-cost materials and corresponding manufacturing processes for grid-scale energy storage.


UT-ORII was founded in 2019 by the University of Tennessee and Oak Ridge National Laboratory to help the US maintain prominence as a global leader in innovation and discovery, and to create a robust talent pipeline in areas of growing national need and demand. UT-ORII is funded by the Department of Energy and the State of Tennessee.


Roles and Responsibilities:

This position will be part of UT-ORII and will work in collaboration with UT and ORNL researchers. The position is located at ORNL and be a Joint-Research faculty ORNL (JFO) at UT and ORNL.  The staff will work in the energy storage area and clean manufacturing area to address current and future needs in large scale and clean manufacturing of long duration energy storage devices that support the national energy transition and decarbonization goals. In addition, this position will provide support for existing research projects, and mentor students at the graduate and undergraduate levels. The position is fully integrated into the ORNL Energy Science and Technology Directorate and part of the UT-OR Innovation Institute, with access to undergraduate and graduate students, common seminars, training, etc. Moreover, the position provides opportunities and eligibility for funding streams outside of Department of Energy (DOE) grants, like National Science Foundation (NSF), National Institute of Health (NIH) and others.

Research faculty will collaborate on laboratory experiments and reporting, proposal preparation and submission, support for existing research projects, and student mentoring at the graduate and undergraduate levels. More information is available at University of Tennessee - Oak Ridge Innovation Institute web-site


Detailed technical roles and responsibilities include:

  • Develop materials and manufacturing science of long duration energy storage.
  • Develop novel materials and cell design to improve energy storage capacity.
  • Establish new capabilities in longer duration energy storage.
  • Collaborate with a large group of scientists across ORNL to establish and execute a unique program around long duration energy storage.
  • Publish results in high impact journals.
  • Mentor staff, postdoctoral researchers, and students. Work with staff and program managers to influence national R&D agenda.
  • Write and lead research and development proposals.
  • Present and report research results in high-impact peer reviewed journals, conferences, and project reviews


More About UT-ORII:

The University of Tennessee-Oak Ridge Innovation Institute is a partnership of Oak Ridge National Laboratory (ORNL) and UT created to prepare interdisciplinary leaders in energy science and technology and develop a world-class workforce for industry, government, and academia that will drive innovation and create the industries of the future.

Today’s energy economy is driven by disruptive technologies and swift change. The US is in a global competition for jobs, talent, and investment. To successfully compete, we must develop leadership talent in research and development (R&D), encourage entrepreneurship, and create an educational environment that promotes rapid innovation and attracts skilled professionals. Leveraging a 75-plus-year UT-ORNL partnership, UT and ORNL have developed joint institutes, joint facilities, interdisciplinary PhD programs, and comprehensive joint faculty arrangements, including 17 Governor’s Chairs recruited for the significance of their impacts in their fields. UT-ORII’s overall goal is to become a center for convergent research and talent development, helping maintain US prominence as a global innovation leader and providing tangible benefits to Tennessee.


More About Oak Ridge National Laboratory:

Since its establishment in 1943, Oak Ridge National Laboratory (ORNL) has been delivering scientific discoveries and technical breakthroughs needed to realize solutions in energy and national security and provide economic benefit to the nation. More than 6,000 employees representing 60+ nations apply unique facilities, sophisticated tools, and signature strengths in neutron science, high-performance computing, advanced materials, biology and environmental science, clean energy, fission and fusion science and engineering, isotopes, and national security research to benefit science and society. In addition, ORNL’s wide range of partnerships with other US Department of Energy (DOE) laboratories and programs, universities, and industry have enabled outstanding contributions to science. Over the years, ORNL researchers have received Nobel Prizes, contributed to the discovery of elements, received hundreds of R&D 100 Awards, and more


Basic Qualifications:

  • A Ph.D. in Materials Science, Chemistry, Chemical Engineering, Electrochemistry, or a related discipline with a minimum of seven years of experience in material development and characterization, batteries, membranes development or manufacturing of electrochemical processes.
  • A record of excellence in grid-scale electrochemical energy storage research through peer-reviewed journal articles and/or issued patents.
  • A record of excellence in program development and project management.
  • Excellent written and oral communication skills.
  • Track record in funding, publications and student mentoring is desired.


UT-Battelle offers competitive salaries, excellent health care insurance, generous retirement plans (401k / pension), and other benefits including family leave, educational assistance and wellness programs.


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