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Research Scientist - Molecular Biophysics (Temporary)

Date: Aug 30, 2021

Location: Oak Ridge, TN, US, 37830

Company: Oak Ridge National Laboratory

Requisition Id 6468 


*This is a temporary 12-month position.*


The Center for Molecular Biophysics ( and the Molecular Biophysics group at the Biosciences Division ( at Oak Ridge National Laboratory (ORNL) seeks a research scientist to support computational research on lignocellulosic materials. Emphasis will be put in optimizing nanocellulose biomaterials. The structure of native plant cell walls and their deconstruction to energy and materials will also be considered. This project is part of a large multidisciplinary efforts to develop Advanced Manufacturing for forest-based fiber-reinforced polymer composites and to understand the mechanism behind biomass deconstruction.


Major Duties/Responsibilities

In this position, you will:

  • Design and execute top-quality research to meet the goals of multiple scientific projects.
  • Investigate computationally plant biopolymers (such as cellulose, hemicellulose, and lignin) and cellulose nanofibers in composite polymer materials.
  • Investigate how solvation alters the structure of lignocellulose and of membranes of bacteria that convert sugars to biofuels.
  • Work closely with experimental collaborators to validate the simulation findings and interpret experimental results.
  • Publish research results in peer-reviewed journals in a timely fashion.


Basic Qualifications

  • A Ph.D. in physics, chemistry, biophysics, biology, chemical engineering or a related field is required.
  • Demonstrated expertise in computational biophysics is required.
  • Desire to work both independently and collaboratively as part of a multidisciplinary team.
  • Excellent publication record.


Preferred Qualifications:

  • Experience with simulation of plant biopolymers, synthetic polymers, and biomembranes, both atomistic and coarse-grained.
  • Experience with machine learning approaches as applied to MD simulations is desirable.
  • Familiarity with neutron or X-ray scattering.


This position is a 12-month temporary position.  The appointment length will be for up to 12 months with the potential for extension. Initial appointments and extensions are subject to performance and the availability of funding.


For further information, contact: Dr. Loukas Petridis, Center for Molecular Biophysics Biosciences Division, ORNL (865) 576-2576 ORNL is an equal opportunity employer. 



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.

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