Software Defined Radio Engineer I

Date: Nov 25, 2023

Location: Oak Ridge, TN, US, 37830

Company: Oak Ridge National Laboratory

Requisition Id 10703 


The Geospatial Science and Human Security Division (GSHSD) is looking for new team members to be a part of our challenging and exciting projects in the area of secure/robust communications research. One focus of our team is developing solutions that utilize artificial intelligence and machine learning to optimize communications in complex RF environments in near real time. Our projects involve developing unique protocols, advancing embedded systems technology, software-defined radios, and RF over fiber providing a wide range of research opportunities and reaching a broad array of sponsors.  The Resilient Communications group at ORNL has also recently installed a ground station for space to ground communication development providing an avenue for new and exciting opportunities involving satellite communications.  ORNL is the home to the fastest supercomputer in the world, which allows our group the opportunity to create complex simulations, such as of 5G RF environments, on HPC supercomputers giving us an edge over many other research institutions.


ORNL’s Resilient Communications group is seeking candidates who would like to participate in the wide array of RF projects and opportunities available at the lab. While experience in most of the areas listed below is ideal, anyone with the drive to be a part of the projects listed above and has some experience in the responsibilities listed below are encouraged to apply. Beyond the technologies our group works on, the lab is full of subject matter experts who are constantly involved in unique and complex problems that we help solve through hardware and software solutions.


Main job responsibilities for the position include working with a team that:

  • Uses machine learning and artificial intelligence to develop PHY layer solutions.
  • Performs modulation/demodulation of RF signals utilizing various antenna and modulations schemes (FSK, PSK, QAM, etc.).
  • Develops new and analyzes existing wireless communication protocols.
  • Provides specific input to software and hardware components of system design, including hardware/software trade-offs, software reuse, use of Commercial Off-the-shelf (COTS) in place of new development, and requirements analysis and synthesis from system level to individual software components.
  • Supports real-world test operations and developing bench test procedures
  • Attends and presents design reviews. Working in both classified and unclassified settings and on a wide variety of applied areas.
  • 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.


We are primarily seeking a candidate who is driven and wants to work on solving hard problems that utilize RF systems. A few of the essential qualifications are listed below followed by a list of desired but not required qualifications.


Essential Qualifications:

  • Competent/familiar with embedded Linux and Python
  • Git experience, or equivalent source code management.
  • Some experience with open-source GNU Radio software and Software Defined Radio systems.
  • Must possess a strong commitment to ethical and professional values as well as maintain a compliance with environmental, safety, health, and quality standards. 


Desirable Qualifications:

  • NVIDIA software experience
  • Experience with RF scanner/receivers, spectrum analyzers, or network analyzers
  • Experience with communication protocol development, signal analysis, and machine learning.
  • Digital signal processing
  • Linux kernel and driver development experience
  • RF communications systems engineering and/or integration
  • RF antenna design, analog and digital signal conversion, and Satellite Communications
  • Experience with waveforms, waveform design, and characteristics
  • Small satellite systems with an emphasis on downlink communications.
  • Experience with writing proposals and developing technical work plans
  • Excellent communications skills for visualization and presentation of methodology, results, and demonstrations.
  • Comfortable working as part of a team.
  • Some travel may be required.


Special Requirement: This position requires the ability to obtain and maintain a clearance from the Department of Energy.


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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