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Irradiation Experiments Engineer

Date: Jan 4, 2022

Location: Oak Ridge, TN, US, 37830

Company: Oak Ridge National Laboratory

Requisition Id 7173 


We are seeking an Irradiation Experiments Engineer who will focus on the design of targets for irradiation in the High Flux Isotope Reactor (HFIR) for the purposes of producing radioisotopes. This position resides in the Target Design, Analysis, and Qualification (TDAQ) group in the Radioisotope Science and Technology Division, Isotope Science and Engineering Directorate at Oak Ridge National Laboratory (ORNL).   TDAQ uses unique facilities at ORNL including the HFIR and the Radiochemical Engineering Development Center (REDC), to enable the production of a variety of important radioisotopes, including plutonium-238 for deep-space exploration, californium-252 for industrial uses, and superheavy elements for scientific research and discovery.


Major Duties and Responsibilities:

  • Translate conceptual target designs into detailed mechanical designs compatible with loading into the HFIR.
  • Lead engineering calculations evaluating the performance of targets during irradiation and confirming performance is within the safety basis of the HFIR.
  • Lead research and development on alternative target designs, including alternative matrial matrices for pressed cermet pellets, complex geometries of pellets, novel encapsulation methodologies, and other innovations utilizing advanced manufacturing.
  • Develop collaborations with other subject matter experts at ORNL and develop collaborative proposals for advancing target design, analysis, and fabrication.
  • Maintain detailed records relating to the fabrication and assembly of targets and sign off on experimental authorization basis documents.
  • Provide imaginative, thorough engineering solutions to a wide range of complex, ambiguous, and/or difficult problems.
  • Serve in professional societies and standards development committees
  • 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 Masters of Science in Mechanical Engineering, Nuclear Engineering, Materials Science, or similar field, and a minimum of seven years of related experience is required, with demonstrated experience in the design and analysis of materials and components for use in nuclear reactors. Work towards a PhD with relevant research may be applied towards this experience requirement
  • Experience with solid modeling and finite element analysis codes
  • A strong understanding of material properties and compatibilities relative to the manufacturing of components for irradiation.
  • This position requires access to technology that is subject to export control requirements. Successful candidates must be qualified for such access without an export control license.


 Preferred Qualifications:

  • A PhD in Mechanical or Nuclear Engineering, Materials Science, or a similar field and a minimum of two years of related experience.
  • Experience in a production and operations environment, with strong quality control over analysis and fabrication.
  • A strong understanding of traditional and advanced fabrication methods
  • Experience writing proposals and soliciting funding for research and development activities.


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.

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.

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