ICPMS Analytical Chemist Transuranium Analytical Laboratory- Associate Staff Member

Date: Mar 25, 2024

Location: Oak Ridge, TN, US, 37830

Company: Oak Ridge National Laboratory

Requisition Id 12751 



We are seeking a Technical Associate Staff Member who will focus on the performance a full range of radiochemical and ICPMS analyses, including sample preparations and chemical separations, for our nuclear and isotope programs.  This position resides in the Transuranium Analytical Laboratory group (TAL) in the Chemical Sciences Division (CSD), Physical Sciences Directorate (PSD) at Oak Ridge National Laboratory (ORNL).


As part of our research team, you will support advanced radiochemical operations for the analyses range of elemental and isotopic characterizations on samples which contain radiological constituents from environmental levels to high levels of radioactivity.  You will perform detailed sample preparations, radiochemical separations and measurement protocols and assist in the development of novel separation and measurement protocols for complex nuclear matrices. Your work will support ORNL scientific staff conducting research and chemical operations associated with the production and purification of radioisotopes and R&D for nuclear fuels.


As a U.S. Department of Energy (DOE) Office of Science national laboratory, ORNL has an extraordinary 80-year history of solving the nation’s biggest problems. We have a dedicated and creative staff of over 6,000 people! Our 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.


Major Duties/Responsibilities: 

  • Serve as an analytical chemist utilizing ICP-MS, ICP-OES for the determinations of elemental, isotopic, and impurity analysis on isotope production samples. REDC processing decisions, nuclear material accountability, and radiological waste disposal criteria are often based on TAL ICP-MS determinations.

  • Participate in the measurements of anions and cations using Ion Chromatography (IC).

  • Be skillful and knowledgeable of elemental ICPMS quadrupole maintenance, setup, and operations. Conduct fully quantitative, semi-quantitative, and high precision isotope ratio measurements for quantification of radiological isotopes in highly radioactive sample streams.

  • Lead and participate in planning workflow for the laboratory, including establishing priorities within and between projects, and determining the best direction of the laboratory efforts for various experiments, tests, and analysis.

  • Collaborate in the development of new analytical methodologies and analytical instrumentation. Presentation of developed work at appropriate professional conferences or in peer reviewed journals.

  • Independently perform sample preparations and chemical separations for radiochemical determinations of nuclear materials.

  • Operate radiochemistry analytical instrumentation, including NMC and Protean gas flow proportional counters, Canberra 4100/4200 gas flow proportional counters, Perkin Elmer 5110R liquid scintillation counter, BF3 neutron detector, and Windows based alpha and gamma ray spectrometry system (Canberra Genie-2K/ORTEC Alphavision & Gammavision) utilizing HPGe and Silicon Surface Barrier detectors.

  • Independently perform laboratory tests as needed to assist in developing, modifying, and refining operational and/or experimental procedures as well as authoring updates or new procedures based on result of the tests.

  • Obtain and maintain all ORNL training requirements for a radiation worker performing analytical work in designated radiological facilities.

  • Utilize Windows based personal computers, instrumentation operation, data reporting, analytical calculations, and sample management.

  • 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:

  • Bachelor’s degree in chemistry, engineering, biology, physics, or closely related discipline

  • 2 years of analytical laboratory experience; a master’s degree and 1 year of experience


Preferred Qualifications:

  • Demonstrated knowledge and experience in the chemistry and separations of lanthanide and actinides, as well as safety consideration for handling

  • Demonstrated knowledge and experience with modern sample preparation methods used in isotopic and elemental characterizations with emphases on nuclear materials

  • Demonstrated knowledge and experience in the safety practices associated with handling radioactive materials

  • Familiarity with the operation of Thermo Scientific ICP-MS, ICP-OES, and IC systems

  • Familiarity with the operation of radiochemistry analytical instrumentation, including NMC and Protean gas flow proportional counters, Canberra 4100/4200 gas flow proportional counters, Perkin Elmer 5110R liquid scintillation counter, BF3 neutron detector, and Windows based alpha and gamma ray spectrometry system (Canberra Genie-2K/ORTEC Alphavision & Gammavision) utilizing HPGe and Silicon Surface Barrier detectors

  • Strong interpersonal skills and the ability to work effectively as a team member

  • Advanced expertise with sample preparation methods used in isotopic and elemental characterizations.

  • A proven ability to work safely in accordance with ES&H standards and procedures

  • 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.


Special Requirements:

  • HSPD-12 PIV badge: This position requires the ability to obtain and maintain an HSPD-12 PIV badge 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.

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

  • Visa Sponsorship: Visa sponsorship is not available for this position.


Benefits at ORNL: 

ORNL offers competitive pay and benefits programs to attract and retain talented 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: ORNLRecruiting@ornl.gov 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 ORNLRecruiting@ornl.gov.

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