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Nuclear Materials Manufacturing Engineer

Date: May 11, 2022

Location: Oak Ridge, TN, US, 37830

Company: Oak Ridge National Laboratory

Requisition Id 8244 


Oak Ridge National Laboratory (ORNL) is seeking a Nuclear Materials Manufacturing Engineer for our world class radioisotope production program, with expertise in the handling, production, and qualification of nuclear materials for irradiation. Supporting the largest radioisotope production and research portfolio within the Department of Energy (DOE) Office of Science for Isotope R&D and Production, as well as extensive isotope production programs for the DOE Office of Nuclear Energy and National Nuclear Security Administration, this position will grant you the opportunity to work with rare nuclear materials and ensure the safe and effective manufacturing of radioisotopes.


This position resides within the Target Production Group (TPG) in the Radioisotope Science and Technology Division (RSTD). The highly accomplished staff within the RSTD use the unique facilities at ORNL, including the High Flux Isotope Reactor (HFIR) the Radiochemical Engineering Development Center (REDC), and several other nuclear and radiological facilities across the ORNL campus to produce a variety of important medical, scientific, and industrial radioisotopes. These include several alpha emitting radioisotopes either deployed or under clinical trial for treatment of cancer (e.g., Ac-225, Ac-227); heavy actinides Bk-249, Es-254, and Fm-257 for fundamental chemistry research and new element discovery; Cf-252 for neutron emitting applications; and Pu-238 for space exploration.


The TPG is responsible for fabrication of radioisotope production targets, often in a remote handling environment. You will work closely with research and development staff to execute validated target manufacturing and fabrication processes and provide feedback for continuous improvement. You will work to create a production and a reliability focused environment, so that ORNL can be successful in meeting our mission to supply critical nuclear materials for science, medicine, and industry, that no one else can.


Major Duties and Responsibilities:

  • Support the scientific mission of the radioisotope production programs by directing and executing the target fabrication, assembly, and qualification of targets for irradiation in the High Flux Isotope Reactor.
  • Oversee capabilities for thermal conductivity and thermal expansion measurements, including maintaining equipment and training/mentoring others.
  • Work directly with nuclear materials in hot cells, gloveboxes, and fume hoods to support target assembly and qualification.
  • Maintain detailed records relating to nuclear materials and irradiation targets.
  • Work closely with technicians, quality representatives, engineers, and scientists to understand manufacturing issues and provide innovative solutions to mitigate them
  • Provide feedback to improve manufacturing reliability and product quality
  • 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 in chemistry, materials science, mechanical, chemical, or nuclear engineering, or a related field, and a minimum of 6 years of relevant experience
  • Experience with manufacturing and assembly and/or handling of nuclear materials


 Preferred Qualifications:

  • Experience with radioactive material handling in glove boxes and/or remote handling hot cells
  • Experience coordinating manufacturing operations with quality assurance and quality control documentation.
  • 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:

L clearance


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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