Assistant Materials Analyst - Technical Professional

Date: Mar 26, 2024

Location: Oak Ridge, TN, US, 37830

Company: Oak Ridge National Laboratory

Requisition Id 12763 


ORNL is a U.S. Department of Energy (DOE) Office of Science national laboratory, with an extraordinary 80-year history of solving the nation’s biggest problems. We have a dedicated and creative staff of over 6,200 people! ORNL’s decadal vision for diversity, equity, inclusion, and accessibility (DEIA) is to cultivate an environment and practices that foster diversity in ideas and in the people across the organization, as well as to ensure ORNL is recognized as a workplace of choice. These elements are critical for enabling the execution of ORNL’s broader mission to accelerate scientific discoveries and their translation into energy, environment, and security solutions for the nation. Come join us and help solve the world's most challenging energy problems!



The Oak Ridge National Laboratory (ORNL) is seeking a ceramist, ceramics engineer, or material scientist with strong technical writing skills and demonstrated laboratory skills in mechanical testing and characterization of multifaceted material powders. This Technical Professional position will directly support the Program Director, Deputy Director, and team of principal investigators with new and existing projects. In this role, the selected candidate will interact with, support, and collaborate with a diverse multi-disciplinary team of research professionals, assisting in the characterization of material mechanical responses of ceramic powders and similar material science research. As a very significant effort and as a way to familiarize the selected candidate with the breadth and depth of the team’s research, the selected candidate will be responsible for writing technical reports from partial documentation and from archived material samples, working with the original researchers to ensure that the technical reports adequately and fairly represent the work performed. This will necessarily involve close collaboration with the original researchers to solicit their feedback and comments on the written documentation and to incorporate said feedback into the documentation.  The selected candidate will also work closely with a dedicated technical editor, who is responsible for editing and formatting all of the work products. The selected candidate will interface extensively with the program office’s dedicated records management team, ensuring that the documentation produced is archived on the appropriate system(s) of record. Finally, the selected candidate will interface with the ORNL publication review and clearance processes including RESolution.


Because most of the technical information relates to ceramic materials, material processing, material characterization, and mechanical testing, the selected candidate will also support the ongoing material science work in the laboratory, conducting materials science research including mechanical property testing and characterization in close coordination with the other team members. The share of hands-on laboratory work will likely increase as the selected candidate gains familiarity with the prior work through the development of previously described technical reports.


This position resides in the Mechanical Properties and Mechanics Group, Materials in Extremes (MiE) Section of the Materials Science and Technology Division (MSTD), Physical Sciences Directorate (PSD) and involves collaboration with ORNL's National Security Sciences Directorate's Nuclear Nonproliferation Division. The individual will also interact and coordinate with other team members in other ORNL Research Divisions.


Major Duties/Responsibilities:

  • Independently write technical reports summarizing material descriptions and experimentation while collaboratively interpreting results and providing recommendations for future work, based on experiments performed by the team over the past decade.

  • Coordinate the completion of the reports and their documentation through interaction with a technical editor, records managers, and the ORNL publication and release system.

  • Collaboratively perform mechanical evaluations of a wide range of materials including ceramics.

  • Collaborate on the identification of techniques/equipment and interpretation of results from ceramic powder characterization and processing.

  • Communicate status updates of current work to principal investigator(s) and program management.

  • Ensure compliance with environmental, safety, health, and quality program requirements.

  • Maintain strong dedication to the implementation and perpetuation of values and ethics.

  • Deliver on ORNL’s mission by aligning behaviors, priorities, and interactions by demonstrating our core values of Impact, Integrity, Teamwork, Safety, and Service. Promote diversity, equity, inclusion, and accessibility by encouraging a respectful workplace – in how we treat one another, work together, and measure success.


Qualifications Required:

  • BS degree with a minimum of one year of experience in materials science, ceramic engineering or related engineering field or a master’s degree in one of those disciplines with no experience.

  • Experience in technical writing. Examples of prior technical writing will be requested.

  • Experience with mechanical testing and ceramic powder characterization.


Preferred Qualifications:

  • Excellent technical writing skills.

  • BS or MS degree in ceramic engineering or materials science.

  • Experience in the measurement of mechanical properties of brittle materials.

  • Experience with mechanical compaction of materials.

  • Experience with ceramic powder characterization (e.g., particle size distribution, specific surface area, pycnometry, and x-ray diffraction, and tap density).

  • Have ability to function well in a fast-paced research environment, set priorities to accomplish multiple tasks within deadlines, and adapt to ever changing needs.

  • Motivated self-starter with the ability to work independently and to participate creatively in collaborative teams across the laboratory.


Special Requirements:

  • 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.

  • Visa sponsorship is not available for this position.

  • Work involves various physical requirements and working conditions. As such, a pre-hire physical will be required after offer.

  • This position requires the ability to immediately pursue, obtain, and maintain a Q clearance from the Department of Energy. As such, this position is a Workplace Substance Abuse (WSAP) testing designated position. WSAP positions require passing a pre-placement drug test and participation in an ongoing random drug testing program.

  • This position requires submission to random and incident-specific polygraphs.


Benefits at ORNL:  

ORNL offers competitive pay and benefits programs to attract and retain hardworking people. The laboratory offers many employee benefits, including medical and retirement plans and flexible work hours, to help you and your family live happy and healthy. Employee amenities such as on-site fitness, banking, and cafeteria facilities are also provided for convenience.


Other benefits include the following: Prescription Drug Plan, Dental Plan, Vision Plan, 401(k) Retirement Plan, Contributory Pension Plan, Life Insurance, Disability Benefits, Generous Vacation and Holidays, Parental Leave, Legal Insurance with Identity Theft Protection, Employee Assistance Plan, Flexible Spending Accounts, Health Savings Accounts, Wellness Programs, Educational Assistance, Relocation Assistance, and Employee Discounts.


If you have difficulty using the online application system or need an accommodation to apply due to a disability, please email: or call 1.866.963.9545.


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