Share this Job

Postdoctoral Research Associate - Growth Mechanisms of 2D Materials & Nanomaterials

Date: Nov 7, 2021

Location: Oak Ridge, TN, US, 37830

Company: Oak Ridge National Laboratory

Requisition Id 6205 


We are seeking a Postdoctoral Research Scholar who will focus on understanding the growth mechanisms of 2D materials and other nanomaterials using both laser and chemical vapor deposition (CVD) synthesis and processing techniques coupled with in situ diagnostic methods to characterize both the growth environment and the emerging nanomaterial structure. This position resides in the Functional Hybrid Nanomaterials Group in the CNMS Division, Physical Sciences Directorate at Oak Ridge National Laboratory (ORNL).   


As a postdoc, you will work within a research team at the Center for Nanophase Materials Sciences (CNMS) that is focused on understanding and controlling the growth mechanisms of nanomaterials bridging length scales from the nanoscale to the macroscale.   Several methods are employed, including traditional approaches such as CVD, but also novel, nonequilibrium approaches for bottom-up and top-down growth and doping such as pulsed laser deposition (PLD) and laser processing within optical microscopy environments or within the TEM, where control over the kinetic energy of precursor species or pulsed photolytic processes are used to synthesize and process nanomaterials with metastable phases or states that are predicted to have novel functionalities.  The novel materials synthesized in this project will be collaboratively shared with a wide variety of electron microscopists, ultrafast spectroscopists, device experts, and quantum information scientists to explore their functionalities across a wide spectrum of capabilities being developed at ORNL.


Major Duties/Responsibilities: 

  • Utilize bottom-up growth methods available within the group, such as CVD and PLD, to grow novel nanomaterials, predominantly atomically-thin 2D materials, and employ typical methods for their transfer and characterization. 
  • Utilize in situ laser processing in TEM/STEM to investigate the growth mechanisms and phase transformations of 2D materials at the atomic scale
  • Write and publish high-impact journal papers, and present results at technical conferences, for sponsors, and other audiences
  • Interact and collaborate across ORNL, with researchers from universities, DOE national laboratories and user research centers and private industry


Basic Qualifications:

  • A Ph.D. degree in Physics, Engineering, Materials Science, Chemistry, or a related discipline completed within the last five years
  • Experience with the synthesis and characterization of 2D materials, other nanomaterials, or thin films.
  • Experience in experimental data acquisition and processing for materials’ assessment


Preferred Qualifications:

  • Experience in 2D materials synthesis, characterization, and transfer techniques.
  • Experience in the characterization of materials with transmission electron microscopy and spectroscopy, preferably STEM imaging and EELS methods.
  • Experience in time-resolved in situ (principally optical spectroscopy) diagnostics to characterize the growth conditions and nanomaterial structure in real time, including software development for automated data acquisition and analysis.
  • Experience in laser-material interactions.
  • Experience with computer-aided data acquisition and equipment interfacing, preferably via Python, but also MATLAB, LabVIEW, Comsol, etc.
  • Strong communication (written and verbal) and interpersonal skills
  • Record of publications/patents relevant to the position
  • Excellent written and oral communication skills
  • Motivated self-starter with the ability to work independently and to participate creatively in collaborative teams
  • 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:

Postdoc Applicants cannot have received their Ph.D. more than five years prior to the date of application and must complete all degree requirements before starting their appointment. The appointment length will be up to 24 months with the potential for extension. Initial appointments and extensions are subject to performance and availability of funding.


Letters of Recommendation:

Three letters of reference are required and can be uploaded to your profile or emailed directly to  Please include the title of the position in the subject line.


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.

Nearest Major Market: Knoxville