Sandia National Laboratories Neutron Diagnostics Postdoctoral Appointee in Albuquerque, New Mexico


We are seeking a Postdoctoral Appointee to collaborate on the development, characterization, calibration, and data interpretation of neutron diagnostics, at the Z machine and on other neutron facilities. Work environments consist of Beryllium and Radiological contamination and operational areas. The work involves diagnostic development, assembly, testing, and calibration in light labs and at other accelerator facilities.

Key functions of this role include, but are not limited to:

  • Collaborate with the international high-energy-density (HED) physics community, and represent the research and development in the organization through publications in scientific journals and presentations at conferences
  • Interface with scientists, engineers, and technicians in order to coordinate experimental activities in the Inertial Confinement Fusion program
  • Design of collimators and shielding using numerical models informed by measurements in order to improve neutron diagnostic data quality and stand up new diagnostic beamlines
  • Support Sandia staff and work independently and proactively on neutron diagnostic development
  • Travel to facilities such as NStec-Las Vegas, Nevada Test Site, Idaho State University’s LINAC, the Omega laser at the University of Rochester, and others
  • Attend and present material at scientific conferences and workshops


  • PhD, conferred within 5 years prior to employment, in Physics, Engineering, or closely associated technical field
  • Experience with data reduction, uncertainty analysis, computer language skills, and scientific comparison between experiment and theory/modeling
  • Co-authored publication in a related area of research, such as nuclear physics, nuclear fusion or fission reactor technology, experimental or theoretical/computation for neutron environments, neutron or x-ray radiation sources or diagnostics, high-energy-density or plasma physics


  • Experience with numerical modeling of neutron environments for experiment design and interpretation of diagnostic data
  • Experience in numerical modeling of neutron scattering and absorption, for example with the MCNP code, and in coupling three-dimensional physical models to the code
  • Experience fielding or analyzing experiments or diagnostics at a major pulsed power or high-energy-density physics facility
  • Knowledge of z-pinch or dense plasma focus design, operation, and diagnosis
  • Experience with operating high-voltage detector electronics and data acquisition systems, and also working with radioactive sources, radiation generating devices and components for diagnostic calibration activities
  • Experience performing radiological work, and interacting with radiological support groups, for example in coordinating the fielding and analyzing of TLDs or CR-39 detectors
  • Strong electro-mechanical skills such as the ability to use varied calibration instruments in light labs for diagnostics testing, and in supporting the setup of experimental equipment such as nuclear electronics, vacuum chambers, gamma-ray detectors, neutron activation detectors, and data acquisition systems
  • Experience in designing and building electronic circuits, proper cable plants, and data acquisition systems including digitizers, pulse generators, high-voltage power supplies, and the necessary interfacing from instruments to computer control
  • Excellent verbal, written, planning, and interpersonal skills conducive to working as a part of a large team
  • Ability to develop collaborations with external organizations
  • Experience leading experiments in a large team environment
  • Highly self-motivated, adaptable to change, and an excellent work ethic suited to making rapid progress through independently directed work
  • First-authored publications in a related area of research, such as nuclear physics, nuclear fusion or fission reactor technology, experimental or theoretical/computation for neutron environments, neutron or x-ray radiation sources or diagnostics, high-energy-density or plasma physics

Department Description:

Department 1677, Neutron & Particle Diagnostics, develops and fields neutron diagnostics at the Z pulsed power facility in support of Inertial Confinement Fusion and other programs, leads fast neutron and nuclear physics studies, and collaborates in neutron source development and high-energy-density physics studies at several facilities. The department is composed of scientists and technologists, working together in a collaborative environment and interacting with scientists from around the world to pursue research in the areas of nuclear fusion and plasma physics.

About Sandia:

Sandia National Laboratories is the nation’s premier science and engineering lab for national security and technology innovation, with teams of specialists focused on cutting-edge work in a broad array of areas. Some of the main reasons we love our jobs:

  • Challenging work withamazingimpact that contributes to security, peace, and freedom worldwide
  • Extraordinary co-workers
  • Some of the best tools, equipment, and research facilities in the world
  • Career advancement and enrichment opportunities
  • Flexible schedules, generous vacations,strongmedical and other benefits, competitive 401k, learning opportunities, relocation assistance and amenities aimed at creating a solid work/life balance*

World-changing technologies. Life-changing careers. Learn more about Sandia at:

*These benefits vary by job classification.

Security Clearance:

This position does not currently require a Department of Energy (DOE)-granted security clearance.

Sandia will conduct a pre-employment drug testing, and a pre-employment background review that includes personal reference checks, law enforcement record checks, and employment and education verifications. Further, employees in New Mexico must pass a U.S. Air Force background screen for access to the work site. Substance abuse or illegal drug use, falsification of information, criminal activity, serious misconduct or other indicators of untrustworthiness can cause access to be denied or terminated, rendering the inability to perform the duties assigned and resulting in termination of employment.

If hired without a clearance, and one subsequently becomes required or you bid on positions that require a DOE-granted security clearance, a pre-processing background review that includes personal reference checks, law enforcement record and credit checks, and employment and education verifications may be conducted prior to a required federal background investigation. Applicants for DOE-granted security clearances must be U.S. citizens and be able to obtain and maintain the appropriate DOE security clearance as required for the position.

EEO Statement:

Equal opportunity employer/Disability/Vet/GLBT


This postdoctoral position is a temporary position for up to one year, which may be renewed at Sandia's discretion up to five additional years. The PhD must have been conferred within five years prior to employment.

Individuals in postdoctoral positions may bid on regular Sandia positions as internal candidates, and in some cases may be converted to regular career positions during their term if warranted by ongoing operational needs, continuing availability of funds, and satisfactory job performance.