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Job advertisement Postdoctoral Research Associate in Geomechanics, Geochemistry, or Geophysics

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European Geosciences Union

Postdoctoral Research Associate in Geomechanics, Geochemistry, or Geophysics

Postdoctoral Research Associate in Geomechanics, Geochemistry, or Geophysics

Los Alamos National Laboratory logo

Los Alamos National Laboratory

Los Alamos National Laboratory is one of the world’s most innovative multidisciplinary research institutions. We’re engaged in strategic science on behalf of national security to ensure the safety and reliability of the U.S. nuclear stockpile. The Earth and Environmental Sciences (EES) Division is the intellectual home of geosciences, atmosphere, hydrology and ecology disciplines at the Laboratory. We provide multidisciplinary Earth science solutions to complex problems in global security, sustainable energy, and climate and environmental change. Our innovative solutions harness theoretical, experimental and computational expertise empowered by world-class technology. We maintain on-site and deploy globally cutting-edge laboratories to research Earth system impacts and emerging threats. We provide critical assessments and knowledge to support national security missions and decisions.


Los Alamos, United States of America


Relevant divisions
Earth Magnetism & Rock Physics (EMRP)
Energy, Resources and the Environment (ERE)
Geochemistry, Mineralogy, Petrology & Volcanology (GMPV)

Full time

Student / Graduate / Internship

84600 - 110000 € / Year,

Preferred education

Application deadline
Open until the position is filled

4 December 2023

Job description

What You Will Do

The Energy and Natural Resources Security group at Los Alamos National Laboratory (LANL) has two openings for Postdoctoral Research Associates in experimental geomechanics. Successful candidates will join a diverse team of scientists who are working to address critical earth science challenges related to energy and national security. Specific research topics related to this opportunity include: (1) experiments using optical fibers to measure distributed strain and temperature inside high-pressure high-temperature vessels; (2) experiments to understand the thermo-chemo-mechanical properties of cementitious composites; and (3) near wellbore modeling with coupled thermo-poro-elasticity.

As a member of our interdisciplinary team that includes experts in rock mechanics, well integrity, geophysics, and geochemistry, the candidate will be at the forefront of developing innovative experimental and modeling methodologies to support finding challenges in energy, the environment, and national security. Our facilities for this work include novel equipment such as our large high-pressure high-temperature (HTHP) quad-pore triaxial system, Fiber Brag gratings optical sensors for distributed strain and temperature sensing, HTHP cement curing vessels and calorimeters, HTHP viscometer and Parr reactors, and triaxial core-flood systems with integrated X-ray capabilities.

The successful candidate is expected to publish results in high-impact peer-reviewed journals and present their work at conferences. The position is for a two-year term, with the option to extend a third year based on performance and funding availability.

What You Need

Minimum Job Requirements:

PhD in a STEM field that included at least introductory study of mechanics of materials and fluid mechanics (or equivalents)
Hands-on experience operating high-pressure (>100 psi) laboratory equipment
Record of publishing in peer-reviewed journals
Communication skills as evidenced by publications and oral presentations at conferences

Education/Experience: Candidates must have received a Ph.D. within the last five years in a STEM field, or will have completed all Ph.D. requirements by commencement of appointment.

Desired Qualifications:

Experience with high-pressure and/or high-temperature laboratory equipment
Knowledge regarding optical fibers for strain and/or temperature measurements
Familiarity with fundamental concepts of thermo-chemo-mechanical properties of cementitious materials
Training, education, or working knowledge of signal processing methods
Background in poro-mechanics, plastic-deformation, or earth mechanics models
Background in cementitious composites design and/or well design
Experience with analytical equipment (e.g., TGA, SEM, XRD, pore size distribution analyzer, or calorimetry)
Proficiency with computational data analysis (e.g., Python, R, or MatLab)

Work Location: The work location for this position is onsite and located in Los Alamos, NM. All work locations are at the discretion of management.

Salary: Competitive salaries are based on the date the PhD degree requirements were completed or the degree was awarded. Starting salary for a new graduate is currently $92,000. For more information go to Postdoc Program website at .

Note to Applicants:

No applicant is expected to have all of the desired skills. Anyone who meets the minimum requirements is encouraged to apply. The application package consists of a CV and a one-page cover letter. Your cover letter should explicitly address how you meet each of the minimum requirements and any of the desired skills, if applicable. In addition to applying online, applicants may email their CV and cover letter to Dr. Meng Meng (

Outstanding candidates may be considered for a Director’s Fellowship or the J. Robert Oppenheimer, Richard P. Feynman, or Frederick Reines Fellowships. For general information about the application processes, LANL postdoc salary, and fellowships, please visit the LANL Postdoc Program page

Where You Will Work

Located in beautiful northern New Mexico, Los Alamos National Laboratory (LANL) is a multidisciplinary research institution engaged in strategic science on behalf of national security. Our generous benefits package includes:

PPO or High Deductible medical insurance with the same large nationwide network
Dental and vision insurance
Free basic life and disability insurance
Paid childbirth and parental leave
Award-winning 401(k) (6% matching plus 3.5% annually)
Learning opportunities and tuition assistance
Flexible schedules and time off (PTO and holidays)
Onsite gyms and wellness programs
Extensive relocation packages (outside a 50 mile radius)

Additional Details

Directive 206.2 – Employment with Triad requires a favorable decision by NNSA indicating employee is suitable under NNSA Supplemental Directive 206.2. Please note that this requirement applies only to citizens of the United States. Foreign nationals are subject to a similar requirement under DOE Order 142.3A.

Position does not require a security clearance. Selected candidates will be subject to drug testing and other pre-employment background checks.

New-Employment Drug Test: The Laboratory requires successful applicants to complete a new-employment drug test and maintains a substance abuse policy that includes random drug testing. Although New Mexico and other states have legalized the use of marijuana, use and possession of marijuana remain illegal under federal law. A positive drug test for marijuana will result in termination of employment, even if the use was pre-offer.

Equal Opportunity: Los Alamos National Laboratory is an equal opportunity employer and supports a diverse and inclusive workforce. All employment practices are based on qualification and merit, without regard to race, color, national origin, ancestry, religion, age, sex, gender identity, sexual orientation or preference, marital status or spousal affiliation, physical or mental disability, medical conditions, pregnancy, status as a protected veteran, genetic information, or citizenship within the limits imposed by federal laws and regulations. The Laboratory is also committed to making our workplace accessible to individuals with disabilities and will provide reasonable accommodations, upon request, for individuals to participate in the application and hiring process. To request such an accommodation, please send an email to or call 1-505-665-4444 option 1.

How to apply

Following your application submission, please forward your application materials to