Share this Job

Postdoctoral Research Associate - Separations Chemistry

Date: Sep 16, 2022

Location: Oak Ridge, TN, US, 37830

Company: Oak Ridge National Laboratory

Requisition Id 9056 


Oak Ridge National Laboratory is the largest US Department of Energy science and energy laboratory, conducting basic and applied research to deliver transformative solutions to compelling problems in energy and security.


We are seeking a Postdoctoral Research Associate who will support the Chemical Separations Group in the Chemical Sciences Division, Physical Sciences Directorate at Oak Ridge National Laboratory (ORNL) who will focus on gas separation, including design and synthesis of ionic liquids and porous organic polymers towards CO2 separation.


The research will be focused on developing novel ionic liquids and nanoporous materials to achieve efficient direct air capture of CO2. The project will involve new design of adsorbents and mechanistic understanding of gas separation process.


The candidate is expected to be involved with other gas separation and CO2 conversion projects. The research will be complemented by collaborations and interactions with other polymer scientists, organic and catalysis chemists, as well as computational chemists.


Major Duties/Responsibilities: 

  • Design and synthesis of novel task-specific ionic liquids
  • Development of novel porous organic skeletons, porous liquids, and membranes
  • Characterization on the adsorbent systems
  • Evaluation of the CO2 uptake and separation performance
  • Mechanistic understanding of the gas separation mechanism
  • Synthesis and characterization of novel monomers and post functionalization of polymers
  • Responsible for presenting and reporting research results and publishing scientific results in peer-reviewed journals in a timely manner
  • Ensure compliance with environment, safety, health and quality program requirements
  • Maintain strong commitment to the implementation and perpetuation of values and ethics


Basic Qualifications:

  • A PhD in Organic Chemistry, Polymer Chemistry, Materials Science and Engineering, Chemical Engineering, or a related field completed within the last 5 years
  • Expertise in organic/polymer synthesis and characterization methods


Preferred Qualifications:

  • Knowledge and expertise in synthesis of ionic liquids
  • Knowledge and expertise in gas separation
  • Knowledge and expertise in well-defined porous organic polymers and controlled functionalization
  • Knowledge and expertise characterization of organic materials
  • An excellent record of productive and creative research demonstrated by publications in peer-reviewed journals
  • 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


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


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.


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