Postdoctoral Research Associate - Scalable Machine Learning for Coupled Physics Applications

Date: Apr 19, 2024

Location: Oak Ridge, TN, US, 37830

Company: Oak Ridge National Laboratory

Requisition Id 11587 


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.


The Computational Coupled Physics (CCP) Group within the Computational Sciences and Engineering Division (CSED), at Oak Ridge National Laboratory (ORNL) is seeking a Postdoctoral Research Associate to develop and apply scalable artificial intelligence (AI) / deep learning (DL) methods to advance multi-scale coupled physics simulations in support of the missions and programs of the US Department of Energy (DOE). ORNL’s CCP conducts world-class research and development in multi-scale computational coupled physics, large scale data analytics and DL, and model-data integration at the DOE’s leadership class Computing Facilities (LCFs). The successful candidate will demonstrate strong expertise and skills in data analytics, development of surrogate and generative DL models, high-performance computing (HPC), and computational sciences.


Major Duties/Responsibilities: 

  • Participate in: (1) design and implementation of scalable DL algorithms, (2) design and architecture of integrated, multi-scale, coupled-physics computer codes, and (3) documentation, verification and validation, and software quality activities.
  • Author peer reviewed papers for journals and conferences, technical reports, open-source software, and represent the organization by making technical presentations at workshops and conferences.
  • Collaborate within a multi-disciplinary research environment consisting of computational scientists, computer scientists, experimentalists, engineers, and physicists conducting basic and applied AI/DL research in support of the Laboratory’s missions.
  • Engage with the broader DL community to develop and apply scalable physics-informed DL techniques to application areas of interest to the CCP group.
  • 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:

  • A PhD in applied mathematics, computer science, or an AI related field completed within the last 5 years
  • Demonstrated expertise in writing advanced software in Python
  • Demonstrated experience with the LINUX operating system, LaTeX, Git, Python
  • Demonstrated expertise in the design and implementation of deep learning algorithms in PyTorch
  • Expertise in object-oriented programming, and scripting languages
  • Parallel algorithm and software development using the message-passing interface (MPI), particularly as applied to AI/ML algorithms
  • Demonstrated effective written and oral communication skills, a proven publication record, and effective interpersonal skills.


Preferred Qualifications:

  • Experience working in a multi-disciplinary research environment that follows modern software quality standards (version control, unit testing, continuous integration, etc.).
  • Experience in the development of large-scale physics simulation codes, including computational scaling and efficiency, for hybrid exascale supercomputing systems.
  • Programming model for multicore and heterogeneous architectures such as graphical processing units (GPUs).
  • 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


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 for up to 24 months with the potential for extension. Initial appointments and extensions are subject to performance and the availability of funding.


Candidates are asked to submit a detailed cover letter describing their experience relative to the duties and qualifications described in this posting with their application.


Please submit three letters of reference when applying to this position. You can upload these directly to your application or have them sent to with the position title and number referenced in the subject line.


Instructions to upload documents to your candidate profile:

  • Login to your account via
  • View Profile
  • Under the My Documents section, select Add a Document


Technical questions:

Massimiliano Lupo Pasini (, Matt Bement (


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: Prescription Drug Plan, Dental Plan, Vision Plan, 401(k) Retirement Plan, Life Insurance, Pet Insurance, 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:



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