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Postdoctoral Research Associate, Power Exhaust & Particle Control: Time Dependent Boundary Plasma Mo

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Date: Nov 21, 2020

Location: Oak Ridge, TN, US, 37830

Company: Oak Ridge National Laboratory

Requisition Id 4171 

Description of job (as it will be advertised): The Power Exhaust and Particle Control (PEPC) group of the Fusion Energy Division seeks applicants to perform interpretive and predictive modeling using the SOLPS-ITER boundary plasma transport code. The PEPC group carries out experimental and simulation work to develop power exhaust and particle control solutions and the accompanying physics basis for a fusion reactor. This position will apply the SOLPS-ITER code to perform time-dependent simulations and explore plasma dynamics. The code will be used to determine the plasma response to gas puff actuators and train reduced models that are appropriate for a data-driven model-based control system. In addition, time-dependent modeling of Edge Localized Modes (ELMs) will be used to explore the dynamics of detachment when coupled with PSI and surface gas retention models. These simulations will be validated against experimental data from the DIII-D tokamak.


Major Duties/Responsibilities: Duties include, but are not limited to:

  • Perform time-dependent boundary plasma simulations using the SOLPS-ITER code
  • Simulate gas puff actuators and use the results to develop reduced models for the divertor fluxes and cost functions that are suitable for a controller
  • Couple SOLPS-ITER to plasma surface interaction and surface gas retention models to determine the dynamics of detached conditions in response to ELMs
  • Analyze code output and compare the results to experimental data
  • Present and report research results in peer-reviewed journals and scientific conferences
  • Ensure compliance with environment, safety, health, and quality program requirements.
  • Maintain strong commitment to the implementation and perpetuation of values and ethics.


Minimum Qualifications:

  • A Ph.D. in Plasma Physics, Math, Nuclear Engineering, or a closely related field.
  • Experience in plasma simulation and data analysis.
  • Demonstrated ability to solve technical problems for research and development projects with limited oversight.
  • Applicants cannot have received the most recent degree more than five years prior to the date of application and must complete all degree requirements before starting their appointment. Applicants must complete all degree requirements before starting their appointment.
  • Appointments will initially be for 24 months with a possibility of an extension of up to 12 months. Initial appointments and extensions are subject to performance and availability of funding


Preferred Qualifications:

  • Experience in machine learning, development of reduced models, and control systems.
  • Programming experience in MATLAB, Python, Fortran, C++ and other science relevant languages is desired.
  • Excellent oral and written communication skills to support regular interactions with fellow research staff, peer reviewers, research sponsors, and to prepare reports, proposals, publications, and journal articles are preferred.


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.

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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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