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Principal Physical Scientist

Nevada National Security Sites
California, US
$121,451.20 - $185,224.00 oer yr.
Posting live until
27 Mar 2024

Job Details

Key Responsibilities

  • Work as a Principal Investigator proposing, developing, testing and delivering novel systems in support of national security objectives.
  • Perform wide range of simulation, design and experimental tasks.
  • Lead small project teams (including tasking and budgets) and report deliverables directly to sponsors and collaborators.
  • Work with other senior staff to conduct experiments for a diverse array of real-world applications.
  • Travel to participate in field experiments and project meetings.
  • Focus on the most complex projects with the broadest technical scope, requiring interdisciplinary and interagency coordination.
  • Set priorities and standards for research, data compilation and data analysis.
  • Carry out special or unique studies requiring unconventional or novel approaches and techniques.
  • Serve as an expert resource, consultant, and advisor both internally and to other organizations.
  • Develop new initiatives and technical capabilities for the company.
  • Advise management on technology utilization and development. Provide guidance to senior management regarding strategic development opportunities for new technologies and capabilities.


  • Bachelor’s degree in a calculus-based (STEM) field, plus at least 9 years’ relevant experience. Skill building experience must demonstrate either deeper technical specialization or additional cross-disciplinary knowledge. Graduate research experience
    may be recognized.
  • Strong experimental and theoretical background in scientific research directed towards real world applications is required.
  • Ability to manage multiple ongoing projects is required.
  • Experience writing successful technical proposals and responding to broad area announcements is required.
  • Demonstrated ability to apply knowledge, experience, and judgment to evaluate and interpret data is required.
  • Experience in applied chemical or physical sciences that may lead to practical field applications of technology such as developing and synthesizing novel materials for proliferation detection applications is desired.
  • Demonstrated experience with material characterization techniques and spectroscopy tools such as NMR, XRD, and SEM is desired.
  • Demonstrated ability to manage multiple tasks and changing priorities, apply leadership concepts and techniques is required.
  • Experience effectively managing projects and ensuring milestones and schedules are met and work is performed within scope, cost, and schedule is required.
  • Interpersonal communication skills to promote an open and informal communication environment, foster collaborations and develop mutual trust and teamwork are required.
  • Demonstrated skills to establish and maintain strong and effective customer relationships are highly desired.
  • The primary work location will be at the Special Technologies Laboratory (STL) located in Santa Barbara, California.
  • Flexible work schedule can be negotiated with the manager; employees can work a 5/8s, 9/80, or 4/10s work-week.
  • Pre-placement physical examination, which includes a drug screen, is required. MSTS maintains a substance abuse policy that includes random drug testing.
  • Must possess a valid driver’s license.


The Nevada National Security Sites (NNSS), part of the U.S. Department of Energy’s (DOE) National Nuclear Security Administration (NNSA), is an enterprise of special-purpose, multi-mission, high-hazard experimentation facilities delivering technical and service solutions in partnership with the National Laboratories. Our collaborative work supports the government’s most important national security missions.

Company info
U.S. Department of Energy
National Nuclear Security Administration
P.O. Box 98518
Las Vegas
NV 89193-8518
United States

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