Group Leader Isotope Processing and Manufacturing

Date: Jun 7, 2023

Location: Oak Ridge, TN, US, 37830

Company: Oak Ridge National Laboratory

Requisition Id 10724 

Oak Ridge National Laboratory (ORNL) is seeking a senior technical leader for our world class radioisotope production program. Supporting the largest radioisotope production and research portfolio within the Department of Energy (DOE) Office of Science for Isotope R&D and Production, this position will grant you the opportunity to work with rare nuclear materials and ensure the safe and effective execution of nuclear materials processing within nuclear and radiological facilities in the Bethel Valley area of the ORNL campus. This position resides within the Isotope Processing and Manufacturing Division (IPMD) at Oak Ridge National Laboratory (ORNL). IPMD is focused on the reliable delivery of radioisotope products to exacting quality standards. This work is performed within the unique facilities at ORNL, including the High Flux Isotope Reactor (HFIR), and several radiological and nuclear facilities throughout the ORNL campus containing shielded hot cells and gloveboxes. In this role you will work to create a high performing production group so that ORNL can be successful in meeting our mission to supply critical nuclear materials for science, medicine, and industry.


Major Duties/Responsibilities: 
•    The group leader is responsible for operating nuclear facilities within the defined safety envelope. 
•    Conduct of operations within hot cell facilities to ensure safe and compliant execution of the mission.
•    Lead a processing and manufacturing portfolio of multiple radioisotope products, each with unique processing flowsheet, frequency, and throughput.
•    Supervise a team of 6-10 technicians and engineers and review work for completeness and quality. 
•    Maintain up-to-date procedures for routine processing.
•    Support research and development groups in translating developmental work into robust processes.
•    Ensure all work is completed in compliance with the high standards of nuclear and radiological facility operations.
•    Work with project management and controls to maintain the resource loaded schedule for facility operations.
•    Work with the quality assurance team to ensure compliance to all quality standards.
•    Respond to requests from program management for processing scheduling changes.
•    Implement facility radioactive material inventory controls.
•    Implement operating procedures, abnormal operating procedures, and alarm response procedures.
•    Schedule work activities and coordinate work authorization.
•    Maintain detailed records relating to nuclear materials processing.
•    Identify opportunities for continuous improvement and optimization.
•    Develop and execute on-the-job training programs to grow the strength of our processing teams. 
•    Provide mentoring and career guidance to early career staff.
•    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 fostering a respectful workplace - in how we treat one another, work together, and measure success.


Basic Qualifications:
•    A Bachelor of Science in Engineering or technical field, and a minimum of eight years of related experience is required. 
•    Experience developing schedules and work plans for projects.
•    Strong leadership and communication skills.
•    Ability to hold and maintain a DOE Q security clearance is required.


Preferred Qualifications:
•    A Bachelor of Science in Chemical Engineering, Chemistry, or similar field, and a minimum of eight years of related experience is required. Experience in a radiochemical operations environment.
•    Experience executing or supervising work in a remote hot cell environment.
•    Experience with the execution of chemical processing techniques such as solvent extraction and ion exchange.
•    Experience reading radioanalytical data such as gamma, alpha, and mass spectroscopy.
•    Experience translating research and development processes into reliable operations.
•    Experience in maintaining high levels of process documentation and quality control.
•    Line management experience with direct supervisory responsibility for a team.
•    Active DOE Q clearance.

This position requires the ability to obtain and maintain a DOE 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 is a full-time staff position.


About the Isotope Science and Engineering Directorate (ISED):
Established in 2020, the Isotope Science and Engineering Directorate is strengthening Oak Ridge National Laboratory's leadership in isotope production and enrichment technology innovation. ISED is guiding the Lab's pursuit of the fundamental science and technology that broadens the application of isotopes for energy, environmental, medical, and national security purposes. These efforts are made possible through the High Flux Isotope Reactor, the Radiochemical Engineering Development Center, ORNL's other nuclear facilities, and an assemblage of world-leading scientists and engineers.  Please visit for more information about ISED.


Benefits at ORNL:
UT-Battelle offers a quality benefits package, including a matching 401(k), contributory pension plan, paid vacation, and medical/dental plan options.  Onsite amenities include a credit union, medical clinic, cafeteria, and fitness facilities.


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.

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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.

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