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Biosciences Research Scientist (Multiple Positions)

Date: Dec 24, 2021

Location: Oak Ridge, TN, US, 37830

Company: Oak Ridge National Laboratory

Requisition Id 5252 



The Biosciences Division (BSD),, in the Biological and Environmental Systems Science (BESS) Directorate at Oak Ridge National Laboratory (ORNL),, is seeking to expand capabilities and hire emerging scientific leaders to advance these efforts. ORNL recently introduced a new scientific leadership structure, with Sections and Groups aligned to the future of the lab. Located on the Reimagining ORNL website are brief descriptions of the BESS directorate and these Sections/Groups.


BSD is an interdisciplinary research and development organization with 60+ years of achievement in bioenergy and biomedical research. Our vision is to expand scientific knowledge and develop innovative strategies and technologies that will strengthen the nation’s leadership in creating solutions to harness the power of biological systems to address technological challenges in energy, health and the environment. Our staff explore the emergent properties of biological systems, from genes and pathways to organisms and communities; apply synthetic biology and gene editing technologies to engineer organisms with prescribed traits; advance technologies for dynamic imaging of molecular and cellular systems; and advance next-generation modeling, simulation and data analytics to extract and transfer information to understand biological systems and their representation in quantitative models.


We are especially interested to nucleate and expand programs around the following areas:


  • Computational and experimental cryoEM – characterization and modeling of biomolecular structure and dynamics through the use of cryogenic electron microscopy, artificial intelligence, machine learning and high-performance computing techniques
  • Image Analytics and Edge Computing – the development of tools for real time plant phenotyping based on hyperspectral, thermal, LIDAR and multi-omics data
  • Cell Structure and Dynamics – super-resolution microscopies and relevant cellular modeling techniques with particular application to plant and microbial systems
  • Quantum Biology – emerging applications of quantum phenomena to measurement and sensing in biological and environmental systems
  • Biomaterials – sustainable production of materials from plant biomass and relevant biotechnology research, including biomanufacturing and 3D printing applications; materials upcycling
  • Phage Biology – interest in discovery, isolation and characterization of phages and influence on host-microbe, microbe-microbe interactions within soil and plant associated ecosystems and developing phage-based applications to synthetic biology and genetic engineering
  • Plant Root Phenotyping – Root and rhizosphere phenotyping, imaging, and editing to enhance belowground interactions
  • Molecular Ecology – Population genetics and molecular ecology of plants and fungi
  • Biosecurity & Biodefense – Novel approaches to detecting and tracking the movement of biological agents; Advancing methods to anticipate, identify and mitigate direct and indirect bioengineered threats to the ecosystem, healthcare and crops.
  • Biological Materials for Defense – Convergence of synthetic biology with materials science and chemical engineering
  • Biomedical Research – Securing the drug supply chain; Applications of energy technologies to targeted medicine

Major Duties/Responsibilities:

  • Develop and sustain a high-impact, internationally recognized research program
  • Team with other scientists and engineers to build new, interdisciplinary research programs
  • Contribute to the scientific mission of ORNL


Qualifications Required:

  • Ph.D. in a relevant STEM field and at least one year of postdoctoral experience.
  • Positive and self-starting
  • Demonstrated ability to work independently and collaboratively as part of large, multidisciplinary teams
  • Strong record of productive and creative research demonstrated by publication in peer-reviewed journals, presentations at professional conferences, and society awards
  • Experience in project and proposal development
  • Excellent interpersonal, oral, and written communication skills



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