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Senior Quantum Computing Scientist

Reading, Berkshire, UK
£46130 - £75000 per annum
Posting live until
13 Jun 2024

Job Details


AWE have an exciting opportunity for a Principal or Senior Quantum Computing Scientist to join our High-Performance Computing Group.

This role offers the opportunity to develop and apply your quantum computing skills to an area of national importance. AWE has a large and complex scientific computing capability, and we need to know where and when to adopt Quantum Computing (QC) approaches.

This is an exciting opportunity to participate and shape the growing Quantum Capability at AWE.

Location: Aldermaston, West Berkshire. We are located between Reading and Basingstoke, with onsite parking.

The successful applicant will need to be able to work from our Aldermaston site, but there is scope for a hybrid-working pattern.


  • Senior QC Scientist: £46,130 to £55,000

  • Principal QC Scientist: £59,960 to £75,000

  • The above are dependent on your suitability, qualifications, and level of experience.

A relocation package may be available for this role - terms and conditions apply.

Closing Date: 12th June 2024

Interviews: We are expecting to schedule interviews for w/c 24th June 2024

The Role:

In this role you will become an AWE expert in one or more areas of QC, leading its development and the application of emerging quantum algorithms.

You will work with academics, supervising and steering collaborative work to develop those algorithms on both simulators and advanced hardware platforms.

For the Principal role you will have established relationships with other quantum computing experts and the ability to work within academia.

There is the potential for travel opportunities for collaboration and to attend conferences.

You will also engage with application teams such as nuclear and electron physics, material properties, fluid dynamics or other areas of solving PDEs to understand requirements and facilitate future adoption of the algorithms.

You will be responsible for assessing where and when (if at all) to adopt new quantum algorithms using relevant techniques evaluating quantum advantage. Working with the Quantum Technology (QT) teams you will champion and articulate the benefits of new QC to our applications teams leading their adoption.

The UK QT programme is large and complicated with stakeholders in academia, industry, and other laboratories. Across the QT teams we aim to link with all the key stakeholders, so in this role you will be expected work with many and in course look after one of the relationships.

Who Are We Looking For?

Candidates applying for this role should have:

  • A PhD in a scientific or STEM discipline, or equivalent experience in a relevant role
  • For the Principal role, extensive leadership experience.

We would be interested in hearing from candidates who can demonstrate knowledge, skills, or experience in some or all the following:

  • Materials modelling (e.g., DFT, DMFT)
  • Nuclear or Electron shell modelling
  • Fermion-Qubit Mappings
  • Fault-Tolerant Algorithms
  • Application of analytical and numerical models
  • Optimisation
  • Collaborative working and good communication skills
  • Stakeholder management
  • Technical Leadership

In addition to the above, you would be expected to have a specialist knowledge in one or more of the following areas:

  • Quantum mechanics
  • Quantum Computing
  • Quantum Information Theory
  • Using Quantum Simulators

For the Principal role, you will be expected to demonstrate

  • Leading larger teams of people
  • National and international technical expertise
  • National and international stakeholder relationships

What will you get from us?

As part of our People Promise, AWE (one of the best 25 big companies to work for in the UK) has a range of benefits to suit you. These include:

  • Time to recharge your batteries with 270 hours of annual leave (including Bank Holidays).
  • 9-day working fortnight - our employees have every other Friday off work.
  • Flexible working hours.
  • Consideration for flexible working arrangements so that your work may fit in with your lifestyle. Just let us know on your application if you wish to work part time.
  • Family friendly policies: Maternity Leave - 39 Weeks Full Pay and Paternity Leave - 4 Weeks Full Pay.
  • Opportunities for Professional Career Development that include funding for the annual membership of a relevant professional body, access to mentors and training.
  • Employee Assistance Programme and Occupational Health Services.
  • A market leading contributory pension scheme (we will pay between 9% and 13% of your pensionable pay depending on your own contribution).
  • Life Assurance.
  • Discounts - access to savings on a wide range of everyday spending savings.
  • Special Leave Policy including paid time off for volunteering, public service (including reserve forces) and caring for your family.

Important things you need to know:

  • You must be a UK citizen who has been resident in the UK for the past 10 years.
  • Interviews will be 90 minutes in length and will be held over Microsoft Teams. You will be required to prepare a 10-minute presentation in advance.
  • Candidates must be willing and able to obtain and maintain the necessary security clearance for the role. This will be funded by AWE.


* Agencies: Please note that we do not out-source our recruitment


AWE profile image

AWE plays a crucial role in national nuclear security. Working to support the defence of our country, we’re a community of creative thinkers from all kinds of backgrounds in all kinds of roles, with one clear mission – to keep everyone, our environment and everything around us safe and secure. Our role in nuclear defence and the specialist expertise we provide to the government, is vital in the defence against the most serious threats faced by the UK – and to keeping the peace. From developing the warheads for the nuclear deterrent, to providing counter-terrorism and nuclear threat reduction solutions, the work we do is of global importance.

Why work for us
What we do is unique and so are the people who work here. We are a team of around 6500 people – proud to be part of such an important mission. We are com​mitted to equality at work and to mainstreaming diversity and inclusion in everything we do. We believe that by bringing together a diverse range of people we’ll get the diversity of thought to approach challenges in new ways.

Training and development
We believe in supporting our people through long-term investment in learning and development. Alongside in-house and on-line training capabilities, we support membership of professional bodies. We also focus on building and developing leadership skills, in pursuit of our best-in-class ambition. We do this through tailored leadership development programmes, accredited by the Chartered Management Institute, designed to equip our leaders with the skills to drive performance and bring out the best in their teams.

Graduate schemes
Our two-year Evolve programme offers four career pathways: Science, Engineering, Environment, Safety, Health & Quality and Corporate & Operations. The programme is designed to be flexible, to incorporate a range of experiences as well as business needs. You’ll undertake several placements to expand your knowledge of your discipline, enabling you to develop yourself and your ongoing career. Your line manager will work with you and support you on your journey.

What we are looking for
We are always looking for high-calibre people to join our team. Whatever stage of your career, AWE is an exciting and challenging environment to develop your skills and achieve your potential. Our ambition is to create workplaces where we recognize and celebrate differences, encourage diverse contributions and our employees feel able to be themselves at work. We strive to create a genuine culture of openness and inclusion and encourage diverse applicants. Please note that you must be a British national to apply for a role at AWE.

Reading, UK

Number of employees

Main areas of research
Nuclear defence, nuclear forensics, radiation detection, plasma physics, hydrodynamics, high-performance computing, materials science

Positions recently recruited for
Computational physics, criticality scientists, experimental physics, radiation science, high-performance computing, radiation detection

Must be a British national and have resided in the UK for 10 years for our science and engineering roles 

How to apply
Please visit our website for further information

Tel +44 (0)118 981 4111

Company info
+44 0118 98 24643
AWE Aldermaston

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