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R&D Laboratory Support Technologist (Early/Mid-Career)

Livermore, CA

Job ID: 691450

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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 with amazing impact 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 work arrangements for many positions include 9/80 (work 80 hours every two weeks, with every other Friday off) and 4/10 (work 4 ten-hour days each week) compressed workweeks, part-time work, and telecommuting (a mix of onsite work and working from home)

  • Generous vacations, strong medical 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.

What Your Job Will Be Like:

We are seeking a Research and Development Laboratory Support Technologist (Member or Senior level) to support and enhance the capability of material characterization activities. In this role, the technologist will have specialization in metallographic sample preparation and optical microscopy methods for use in the physical, chemical, and structural characterization of metal alloys, polymers, ceramics, and associated composite structures. This role requires the performance of a variety of duties in such areas as operation of instrumentation, computer applications, testing, and scientific data collection. In particular, the successful candidate will be responsible for the day-to-day operation of metallographic equipment including polishers and hardness testers, as well as light optical microscopes. These responsibilities include: the preparation of materials by metallographic methods (as cutting, epoxy mounting sectioned materials, grinding, mechanical/vibratory polishing, chemical etching and electropolishing); use of instrumentation for materials characterization tasks (as light optical microscopes, laser interferometers and hardness testers); maintaining an organized and safe facility with the design of operational procedures and drafting of work documents (to maintain equipment, describe laboratory operations, process waste disposal and provide reports to customers); maintaining and prioritizing a use of instrument schedule; working with vendor service engineers to maintain the instrument in full operation; and conducting productive interactions with a diverse customer base. On any given day, you may be called on to:

  • Perform on-the-job training provided by senior staff and technologists, and through external training, to provide support for activities that range from basic materials science research to applied engineering materials characterization that is integral to Sandia’s national security mission

  • Be responsible for maintaining a culture of engineered safety, support the development and documentation of safety systems used in laboratory activities that include operating procedures and the drafting of work documents as, e.g., primary hazard screening and standard operating procedures

  • Be a motivated team member, have a dedication to customer service, work independently when needed, contribute creatively to team efforts, and show aptitude through verbal and written communication

Due to the nature of the work, the selected candidate must be able to work onsite at the Sandia Livermore location.

Qualifications We Require:

  • Associate’s in the physical sciences or engineering, or equivalent combination of education and experience

  • Experience performing metallographic sample preparation that is documented on your resume

  • Ability to obtain and maintain a DOE Q-level security clearance

Qualifications We Desire:

  • Experience working with customers to determine the content of executable work requests, prepare documents of procedure/techniques, and prepare reports of results to customers that may include written text, data, and image files with basic analysis

  • Demonstrated proficiency in operating metallographic sectioning/cutting, mounting, and polishing instruments as well as use of optical light microscopes in a research and development or industrial laboratory setting

  • Experience executing and completing diverse tasks in parallel with high quality

  • Certification in metallography and/or microscopy

  • Experience working independently with minimal day-to-day supervision

  • Proficiency in operating various hardness testers and the basic use of scanning electron microscopes

  • Fundamental understanding of metallurgical alloys, microstructural features, and the mechanical properties of materials

  • Proficiency with Microsoft office software and the ability to learn/execute other software packages for data acquisition/analysis

  • A demonstrated dedication to excellent customer service

  • Experience managing tasks and operation in a laboratory such as maintaining laboratory inventory to keep supplies stocked, and other laboratory facility users properly trained

About Our Team:

The Metallography and Microscopy Team specializes in the characterization of inorganic and organic materials for energy and national security applications. This group supports laboratory programs through a variety of characterization methods that include optical microscopy; scanning and transmission electron microscopies; focused ion beam sample preparation; and macro-micro-nano indentation. In addition, this team supports a broad set of analytic equipment critical to the operations of the California site. The team provides a key element in a diverse set of Materials Science organizations and resources, managed both locally and across the corporation. Energy Nanomaterials Department staff members partner broadly with personnel within Sandia and many external institutions, taking advantage of our proximity to other research facilities and staff in the San Francisco Bay Area and Northern California.

Posting Duration:

This posting will be open for application submissions for a minimum of seven (7) calendar days, including the ‘posting date’. Sandia reserves the right to extend the posting date at any time.

Security Clearance:

Sandia is required by DOE to conduct a pre-employment drug test and background review that includes checks of personal references, credit, law enforcement records, and employment/education verifications. Applicants for employment need to be able to obtain and maintain a DOE Q-level security clearance, which requires U.S. citizenship. If you hold more than one citizenship (i.e., of the U.S. and another country), your ability to obtain a security clearance may be impacted.

Applicants offered employment with Sandia are subject to a federal background investigation to meet the requirements for access to classified information or matter if the duties of the position require a DOE security clearance. Substance abuse or illegal drug use, falsification of information, criminal activity, serious misconduct or other indicators of untrustworthiness can cause a clearance to be denied or terminated by DOE, resulting in the inability to perform the duties assigned and subsequent termination of employment.


All qualified applicants will receive consideration for employment without regard to race, color, religion, sex, sexual orientation, gender identity, national origin, age, disability, or veteran status and any other protected class under state or federal law.

NNSA Requirements for MedPEDs:

If you have a Medical Portable Electronic Device (MedPED), such as a pacemaker, defibrillator, drug-releasing pump, hearing aids, or diagnostic equipment and other equipment for measuring, monitoring, and recording body functions such as heartbeat and brain waves, if employed by Sandia National Laboratories you may be required to comply with NNSA security requirements for MedPEDs.

If you have a MedPED and you are selected for an on-site interview at Sandia National Laboratories, there may be additional steps necessary to ensure compliance with NNSA security requirements prior to the interview date.

Position Information:

This Limited Term Employee (LTE) position is a temporary position for one year term, which may be renewed at Sandia's discretion up to a maximum of seven years.

Individuals in LTE 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.

Job ID: 691450

Apply Now


  • Worklife Balance
  • Flexible Work Schedules
  • Generous Paid Time Off
  • Exceptional 401K Savings Plan
  • Medical/Dental/Vision Insurance
  • Wellness Programs
  • On-site Amenities
  • Vacation Buy Plan
  • Telecommuting Arrangements*

*with management approval

Life in California

  • Close proximity to first-tier universities, Silicon Valley companies, and other top research laboratories and facilitiesM
  • Access to California’s finest public and private schoolsM
  • VineyardsM
  • BeachesM
  • State ParksM
  • Sports – Nearby major league franchisesM
  • Art havenM
  • Proximity to SF Bay AreaM

Learn more about Life in Livermore, California