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Sr. R&D Staff Nuclear and Radiological Risk Management Sciences

Date: Jun 3, 2021

Location: Oak Ridge, TN, US, 37330

Company: Oak Ridge National Laboratory

Requisition Id 4509 



We are currently seeking world-class scientific leaders for the National Security Sciences Directorate with Oak Ridge National Lab.  The Senior R&D Staff position affords the unique opportunity to work with a group of talented R&D professionals and expand ORNL’s reputation as a premier R&D organization by enabling true impact on critical nuclear and radiological (nuc/rad) security missions through a team-based approach and commitment to excellence.




Provide scientific leadership within the directorate to strategically advance Research and Development (R&D) in Nuclear Safeguards, Security, and Nonproliferation. Our Senior R&D Staff are scientific leaders in and beyond the ORNL community and help lead the scientific direction in their respective areas of expertise.


The Senior R&D Staff brings together a group of peers with the primary goals of pursuing global scientific leadership in their field, developing a strategy to develop a world-class capability, nurturing and mentoring group members, and continuing to build and scale-up individual excellence and impact in R&D. This position works closely with the R&D line leadership to implement the scientific vision; establish capabilities that enable programs to excel at the forefront of science and technology; perform R&D to advance the field of knowledge and/or technology in one’s respective specialty; set, implement, and model standards for performance of work consistent with Environment, Safety, Security, Health, and Quality (ESH&Q) requirements and business rules; and ensure a diverse and inclusive work environment where every employee feels safe, heard, and appreciated—a workplace that sets an example for the broader community.


The National Security Sciences Directorate conducts research and development to confront some of the nation’s most difficult security challenges and adversaries.  Our directorate houses S&T leadership in cybersecurity and cyber-physical resiliency, data analytics, geospatial science and technology, nuclear nonproliferation, and high-performance computing for sensitive national security missions. We draw on the Laboratory’s exceptional facilities and work closely with leading researchers in other areas at the lab such as nuclear and chemical sciences and engineering, applied materials, advanced manufacturing, biosecurity, transportation, and computing.  Our multi-disciplinary research teams are passionate about discovery and innovation as we create science-based solutions to complex security threats that put public safety, national defense, energy infrastructure, and the economy at risk.



The Nuclear and Radiological Security Section is seeking a Senior R&D Scientist to advance the risk management sciences within the nuc/rad sector. Traditional vulnerability assessment and risk management has remained consistent over several decades while the industry has evolved as well as the threat landscape. This sector is in need of a paradigm shift relative to a comprehensive risk management approach that encompasses threat, vulnerability, and consequence analysis and combines multiple different adversaries and attack vector. These attack vectors include the integration of cybersecurity and cyberphysical security as well as the human elements such as intentional and inadvertent insider threats and other social science elements of risk. The incumbent in this position with lead a scientific agenda of modernizing the nuc/rad security industry’s approach risk management by teaming with various sponsors, internal capabilities, and other thought leaders in this industry.



Our commitment to diversity:  As we strive to become the world’s premier research institution in the sciences and technologies that underpin critical national security missions, we are committed to creating an inclusive environment that highly values a diverse workforce.  We recognize that the breadth of perspectives, insights, and experiences are necessary to drive the level of innovation and discovery that is mission-critical to national security sciences.  Our commitment extends beyond our workforce to the next generation of researchers with STEM education outreach that seeks to engage a diverse range of students.



Major Duties and Responsibilities:

  • Initiate, lead and perform independent and impactful R&D in the nuc/rad security field on an ongoing basis as evidenced by innovative S&T delivered to sponsors, successful proposals, S&T presentations, professional community engagement, inventions/patents/copyrights, publications, etc.
  • Lead nuc/rad security program development activities through sponsor engagements, preparation of proposals and white papers, participation in workshops, as well as other program development activities.
  • Develop a vision and implement a cohesive research strategy to ensure the success of new and ongoing research projects to position the group for future success, through integrating research efforts with the strong field expertise present in the organization.
  • Develop and implement plans to exploit new opportunities and/or expand existing efforts.
  • Lead by example by exercising scientific integrity in proposing, performing, and communicating research.
  • Lead by example to ensure all work is carried out safely, securely, and in compliance with ORNL policies, standards, and procedures.
  • Exemplify a commitment to excellence in research, operations, and community engagement, and work cooperatively to leverage scientific capabilities across ORNL.
  • Advance the reputation of the group and standing of the group as a whole through establishing collaborations, professional society leadership and involvement, and organization of technical events.



Basic Requirements:

  • Requires a Ph.D. with a minimum of 6 years of relevant experience or an M.S. with a minimum of 12 years of relevant experience.
  • Demonstrated ability to write winning proposals to government agencies in the area of nuc/rad security.
  • Demonstrated ability to successfully lead nuc/rad security projects as principal investigator.
  • Demonstrated ability to interface and collaborate with multiple peer organizations and scientific capability areas.
  • Demonstrated ability to make significant technical contributions to projects.
  • Demonstrated ability to present scientific results to sponsors and technical communities, as well as at professional society conferences and workshops.
  • Excellent interpersonal skills with a demonstrated leadership ability and a strong commitment to a team environment. 
  • Strong written and oral communication skills. 



Preferred Qualifications:

  • Demonstrated track record of research and development leadership in nuc/rad security both through domestic and international engagements that seek to sustain and strengthen the national security community.
  • Experience working for or collaborating with DOE National Laboratories (or similar R&D organizations), international research institutions, the International Atomic Energy Agency, and foreign governments and industry. 



Special Requirement:

This position requires the ability to obtain and maintain a clearance from the Department of Energy. As such, this position is a Workplace Substance Abuse (WSAP) testing designated position. WSAP positions require passing a pre-placement drug test and participation in an ongoing random drug testing program.



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: Chattanooga