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Group Leader - Experiments and R&D Programs

Date: Apr 28, 2022

Location: Oak Ridge, TN, US, 37830

Company: Oak Ridge National Laboratory

Requisition Id 7427 


Oak Ridge National Laboratory is the largest US Department of Energy science and energy laboratory, conducting basic and applied research to deliver transformative solutions to compelling problems in energy and security.


We are seeking a Group Leader who will lead the Experiments and R&D Programs Group in the Research Reactors Division (RRD), Neutron Sciences Directorate (NScD) at Oak Ridge National Laboratory (ORNL).  


The selected candidate will lead a team of professionals in facilitating a wide variety of research and isotope production experiments at ORNL’s High Flux Isotope Reactor (HFIR). This team organizes, analyzes, facilitates, and participates in research, collaborating at all levels, with many disciplines, and diverse cultural backgrounds both inside and outside the organization.


Major Duties/Responsibilities: 

  • Provide leadership to the team of technically diverse experiment safety and project engineers/analysts who support HFIR experiment analysis and research activities through experiment safety approvals, technical evaluations, and project management
  • Manage and mentor experiment coordination staff, including distribution of workload, annual performance expectations and developmental and career growth goals
  • Interface with many programs and organizations both inside and outside ORNL to guide researchers through the rigorous requirements and process for gaining experiment approval at the HFIR
  • Manage the experiment safety program for in-core experiments at HFIR, ensuring compliance with the Documented Safety Analysis and Technical Safety Requirements
  • Continuously improve experiment-related processes and tools used for the experiment management process
  • Review calculations related to experiments. This requires basic understanding of neutronics, thermal-hydraulics, mechanics, and materials science
  • Participate in system engineering activities for experiment-related reactor systems; preparing and reporting system-health bi-annually
  • Collaborate with Systems Engineering, Operations, Maintenance, and Nuclear Safety on modifications and upgrades to experiment facilities
  • Represent HFIR and its experimental capabilities with various research programs both inside ORNL, as well as domestically and internationally
  • Participate in special projects, including improvements to reactor or experiment systems, as well as projects in the areas of isotope production, materials science, fuels research, nuclear forensics, neutrino research and neutron scattering
  • Ensure adherence to the rules and regulations that govern the operation of a DOE nuclear facility and ensure compliance with environment, safety, health and quality program requirements
  • Maintain a strong commitment to nuclear safety, human performance improvement initiatives, and the implementation and perpetuation of values and ethics
  • Expand and diversify research programs at HFIR in alignment with ORNL and Neutron Sciences Directorate missions
  • Publish technical reports and non-neutron scattering research papers in support of the ORNL and Neutron Sciences missions
  • Ensure compliance with Environment, Safety and Health (ES&H) and QA requirements
  • As a member of the ORNL scientific community, you will be expected to commit to ORNL's Research Code of Conduct.

Our full code of conduct, and a statement by the Lab Director's office can be found here:


Basic Qualifications:

  • A Bachelor’s Degree and a minimum of 8 years experience. A combination of education and experience may also be considered.
  • Experience managing, motivating and leading professionals
  • The ability to plan, organize, and execute initiatives relying on both direct and matrixed staff
  • Experience leading projects and an understanding of project management fundamentals


This position requires the ability to obtain and maintain a 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.


Preferred Qualifications:

  • A Master’s Degree in an Engineering discipline, Engineering Physics, or a related technical field and 10 or more years of relevant experience
  • Familiarity with one or more modeling and simulation tools in the areas of neutronics, thermal-hydraulics, mechanics, structures, computational fluid dynamics
  • Familiarity and experience with research reactors, hot cell facilities, radiological material shipping, configuration management, and safety basis requirements for research reactors Excellent written and oral communication skills
  • Motivated self-starter with the ability to work independently and to participate creatively in collaborative teams across the laboratory 
  • Ability to function well in a fast-paced research environment, set priorities to accomplish multiple tasks within deadlines, and adapt to ever changing needs

Moving can be overwhelming and expensive. UT-Battelle offers a generous relocation package to ease the transition process. Domestic and international relocation assistance is available for certain positions. If invited to interview, be sure to ask your Recruiter (Talent Acquisition Partner) for details.

For more information about our benefits, working here, and living here, visit the “About” tab at



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