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Postdoctoral Fellow
Job ID #: 12427 Location: Newport News, VA
Functional Area: Science Division: Accelerator Ops, R & D
Position Type: Term Education Required: Doctorate (Professional)
Experience Required: Less than 1 year Relocation Provided: Yes

As a matter of corporate policy, all JSA employees are required to be vaccinated against COVID-19.  All successful hires will be required to provide COVID-19 vaccination verification as a condition of employment, subject to limited legally recognized exemptions to the COVID-19 vaccination.

Position Posted: APRIL 8, 2022
Salary Range:  $59,500 - $89,300 (PD)
Work Location Type: Flexible On-site (working more than 60% on-site)

Come join our team at Jefferson Lab, where great minds matter. 

Thomas Jefferson National Accelerator Facility (JLAB) has a long-standing program for the development of alternate superconducting Radiofrequency (RF) surfaces based on thin film technologies. Encouraging results have been obtained for niobium (Nb) and alternate material thin films and multilayer structures on small laboratory samples produced by conventional PVD and energetic condensation (HiPIMS, ECR post-ionization) techniques. The development is pursued with the optimization of substrate preparation, interlayers, insulating layers, thermal treatment, target composition on small samples. RF performance is to be evaluated on simplified geometry in a quadrupole resonator (QPR) and on elliptical RF resonators (single-cell cavities). In parallel, characterization by microscopy (SEM, TEM), diffraction (XRD, EBSD), spectrometry (EDS, XPS, SIMS, AES, EELS), magnetometry and other cryogenic measurements (3rd harmonic, RRR, PCT) is done both in house and in collaboration with external institutes.

The JLab Superconducting radio frequency (SRF) research department seeks a Postdoctoral Research Associate to take part in its thin film programs and particularly focus on developing the deposition of Nb3Sn primarily in the framework of multilayer structures.

What Your Job Will Be Like:

With guidance, the Post-doctoral Fellow will conduct research on A15 superconducting materials and associated dielectric materials to produce SIS structures. In particular, the incumbent is responsible for developing and optimizing a method to achieve the sought-after phases and structures by leveraging energetics. A principal objective of this development lies in setting up a method to form the Nb3Sn A15 phase at a lower temperature than usually possible with conventional methods. These activities also include working with surface analytical tools like SEM combined with EBSD and EDS, TEM/EELS, SIMS, and XPS. The incumbent will also work closely with the principal investigator, staff and graduate students to conduct RF evaluation at cryogenic temperatures of SRF film structures coated on QPR samples and elliptical single-cell cavities, to evaluate results, which guide the optimization of deposition methods, and to write reports in the form of technical notes, conference proceedings and/or peer reviewed journals.

The ideal candidate will have a strong background in surface & thin film science with experience in one or more of the techniques mentioned above and be willing to use his/her experimental background to crossover into the field of accelerator physics. Alternative candidate should have extensive Superconducting RF experience and be willing to use it to further the development of thin film based accelerating structures based on Nb3Sn and other A15 compounds.

In this role, you will…

  • Be involved in research and development of thin film superconducting structures relevant for accelerator applications, aiming to improve superconductor radio-frequency (RF) performance and solve relevant issues for applications
  • Develop deposition of Nb3Sn thin film and structures via energetic condensation, characterize samples using microscopes and magnetometry setups, and prepare and mount samples for these experiments.
  • Participate in analyzing the microstructure and properties of superconducting surfaces, films and structures, analyzing the field enhancement RF losses.
  • Participate in the evaluation of RF performance and magnetic effects at cryogenic temperatures for similar structures coated on QPR samples and elliptical single-cell cavities.
  • Conduct, analyze, and present data. Make comparisons with complementary experiments.
  • Determine solutions to technical problems by reviewing scientific and technical literature and simulation methodologies as well as designing and executing experiments to support research.
  • Presents scientific conclusions at internal and external meetings, in technotes, proceedings and/or peer-reviewed journals.
  • Collaborate with scientists, engineers, and technicians to accomplish research goals.
  • Pursue independent (but complementary) research interests and interact with a broad spectrum of scientists internally and externally to JLab.

 JSA will not sponsor H1B visas for this position

Qualifications We Require:


  • PhD degree in Physics, Applied Physics, Material Science, or closely related Engineering discipline from an accredited university or
  • Equivalent combination of education and experience

Knowledge, Skills, Abilities:

  • Able to communicate clearly in writing (e.g. email, memos, explanations, drawings) and explain work to his/her supervisor and others in the group
  • Interacts well in a team environment
  • Can represent work associated with specific projects at professional meetings
  • Experience with thin film deposition techniques.
  • Has experience in calculations and/or simulations regarding the particle interactions in matter, especially experience with MatLab, COMSOL or EPIC/MC software.

Qualifications We Desire:

  • Knowledge in materials science & engineering, superconductivity, and/or superconducting RF is desired.
  • Experience with RF systems is a plus.

About Jefferson Lab

Join a community with a common purpose of solving the most challenging scientific and engineering problems of our time.  The Jefferson Lab campus is located in southeastern Virginia amidst a vibrant and growing technology community.

A career at Jefferson Lab is more than a job. You will be part of “big science” and work alongside top scientists and engineers from around the world unlocking the secrets of our visible universe.   Managed by Jefferson Science Associates, LLC; Thomas Jefferson National Accelerator Facility is entering an exciting period of mission growth and is seeking new team members ready to apply their skills and passion to have an impact.  You could call it work, or you could call it a mission. We call it a challenge. We do things that will change the world.

Total Rewards at Jefferson Lab

At Jefferson Lab, we believe that a comprehensive employee benefits program is an important and meaningful part of the compensation employees receive. Our benefits program includes, but is not limited to: 

  • Medical, Dental, and Vision Care Plans 
  • Flexible Spending Accounts 
  • Paid Time-off and Leave Programs (Paid Parental, vacation, holidays, and sick leave) 
  • 401(k) Plan – 9% Lab Contribution; 100% vested 
  • Flexible Work Arrangements (Remote & Alternate Work Schedules available) 
  • Tuition Assistance, Training and Professional Development Programs 
  • Live near the waterways of the Chesapeake Bay region with access to nearby beaches, mountains, and all major metropolitan centers on the East Coast

• Ability to comprehend, formulate, and communicate highly abstract concepts
• Ability to express or exchange complex ideas by means of spoken and written communication
• Ability to analyze and interpret complex data and develop models

• Ability to traverse across various locations on the laboratory site and access work areas
• Ability to lift up to 10 pounds frequently and 25 pounds occasionally
• Ability to stoop, bend over and climb ladders
• Ability to work on a computer for extended periods
• Visual capabilities sufficient to use computer workstations, read documents, and see safety alarms
• Auditory capabilities to hear safety alarms

Jefferson Science Associates, LLC (JSA) manages and operates the Thomas Jefferson National Accelerator Facility (Jefferson Lab). JSA is an Equal Opportunity Employer and does not discriminate in hiring or employment on the basis of race, color, religion, ethnicity, sex, sexual orientation, gender identity, national origin, ancestry, age, disability, or veteran status or on any other basis prohibited by federal, state, or local law. As part of the JSA’s equal employment opportunity policy, we also take affirmative action as called for by applicable laws and Executive Orders to ensure that minority group individuals, females, disabled veterans, recently separated veterans, other protected veterans, Armed Forces, and qualified disabled persons are introduced into our workforce and considered for promotional opportunities.

JSA is committed to providing reasonable accommodations for persons with disabilities (unless doing so will result in an undue hardship). If you need a reasonable accommodation for any part of the employment process, please send an e-mail to or call (757) 269-7598 to provide the nature of your request. Reasonable accommodations are considered on a case-by-case basis.

Employment with JSA is conditional upon DOE approval if at any time during your employment you are participating in a Foreign Government Talent Recruitment Program or Affiliated activity. Generally, such programs/activities include any foreign-state-sponsored attempt to acquire U.S.-funded scientific research through programs run or funded by the government that target scientists, engineers, students, academics, researchers, and entrepreneurs of all nationalities working or educated in the United States. This includes positions or appointments, both domestic and foreign, titled academic, professional, or institutional appointments whether or not remuneration is received and whether full-time, part-time or voluntary.

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