Computational Instrument Scientist - Biology

Date: Feb 8, 2024

Location: Oak Ridge, TN, US, 37830

Company: Oak Ridge National Laboratory

Requisition Id 12336 


We are seeking a Computational Instrument Scientist (CIS) for small-angle neutron scattering. This position resides in the Biological Labeling and Scattering Group in the Large Scale Structures Section, Neutron Scattering Division (NSD), Neutron Sciences Directorate (NScD) at Oak Ridge National Laboratory (ORNL).


Applications are sought from highly creative and motivated individuals with demonstrated skills/experience in method development who will join the interdisciplinary team of instrument scientists that support the Biological Small-Angle Neutron Scattering (Bio-SANS)and General Purpose Small-Angle Neutrons Scattering (GP-SANS) instruments at the High Flux Isotope Reactor (HFIR) and the Extended Q-range Small-Angle Neutron Scattering (EQ-SANS) and the Time-of-Flight Ultra-Small Angle Neutron Scattering (ToF-USANS) instruments at the Spallation Neutron Source (SNS).  Additional information and specifications for these instruments may be found on the following ORNL Neutron Sciences websites:;;; and


The CIS is the liaison between the experimental and computational aspects of the neutron scattering science program and coordinates with instrument scientists and software developers in the development of sustainable products for the user community.  In this position, you will emphasize developing software analysis tools for biological research, and improving automation for translating measurements into knowledge, that are applicable across the instruments in the SANS suite. As part of your career, you will have opportunities to use other neutron scattering instruments at SNS and HFIR to pursue your scientific interests. 


Major Duties/Responsibilities: 

  • You will interact with members of both the Large Scale Structures Group and the Scientific Computing and Software Engineering group to
    • Communicate and refine data reduction, analysis and modeling software product requirements to transition new developments into sustainable products for the user community
    • Develop documentation and tutorials for data acquisition, reduction and analysis for users
    • Participate in instrument upgrade projects with a focus on the entire data pipeline including data acquisition, reduction, and analysis
    • Triage and prioritize issues and bugs reported by users
    • Communicate software development activities to the instrument teams in the suite
  • You will support the User Program by
    • Serving as an integral member of the instrument team
    • Attracting users from new areas of research, especially related to the topics of your own research efforts, to expand the user community and the impact of neutron scattering
    • Assisting in the development of beam time proposals
    • Providing support to assigned users as local contact
    • Assisting users with data reduction, analysis and modeling
    • Working with the team to develop enhanced data analysis capabilities
  • You will pursue a high-quality personal research program using small-angle neutron scattering, build national and international collaborations, and publish research results in scientific journals.
  • You will deliver ORNL’s mission by aligning behaviors, priorities, and interactions with 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.


Basic Qualifications:

  • A PhD in biophysics, computational biology, chemistry, polymer science, engineering, or a related field
  • Experience with scientific software development


Preferred Qualifications:

  • Experience with small-angle scattering studies using either x-rays or neutrons
  • Previous beamline support experience in a neutron or synchrotron x-ray user facility
  • Ability to work with technical and scientific support groups


Special Requirements:

Letters of Recommendation: If you are selected for interview, you may be required to submit a minimum of 2 letters of recommendation.


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, and Employee Discounts. Relocation Assistance is available for certain positions.


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.

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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