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Iowa State University Postdoctoral Research Associate - Ames Laboratory in Ames, Iowa

Position Information:

Position Title:Postdoctoral Research Associate - Ames Laboratory

Appointment Type:Post Doc/Trainee

Job Description:Summary of Duties and Responsibilities:

The Division of Materials Science and Engineering at the Ames Laboratory, a Department of Energy National Laboratory affiliated with Iowa State University, is searching for a qualified candidate to fill the Postdoctoral Research Associate position, supported by DOE’s Office of Science, Basic Energy Sciences (BES). Research will be conducted under the supervision of Professor Duane Johnson’s research group. This project will work with various standard and novel electronic-structure techniques, such as plane-wave and full-potential methods, as well as utilize object-oriented and parallel programming (Fortran and C/ C++, along with shell scripting, compilers, debuggers) and version control tools. A key component of the research is algorithm and code development to predict phase transformations and finite-temperature properties reliably, and apply modern machine-learning approaches to materials discovery.

The DOE project will focus on Mapping and Manipulating Phase Transformation Pathways in complex materials and extreme conditions to design and control properties, e.g., including quantum, magnetic, and structural materials, such as high-entropy alloys and quantum materials, as well as collaborate with experimental groups to verify results. Green’s function, multiple-scattering theory (KKR) methods, including linear-response, along with a working knowledge of correlated electron and excited-state physics is necessary to develop unique thermodynamic and electronic-structure-based capabilities.

The successful candidate is expected to collaborate in a team consisting of other scientists, post-doctoral researchers and graduate students, and conduct both collaborative and independent research. Therefore, the successful candidate must be able to communicate effectively with a variety of audiences. Skills with writing are a significant advantage to accomplish this.

Required Minimum Qualifications:

Ph.D. must be completed prior to start date.

Preferred Qualifications:

  • Ph.D. in materials physics or related field.

  • Demonstrated knowledge or experience with electronic-structure methods, including mathematical derivation, methods development, coding, and application of such methods to complex materials.

  • Demonstrated knowledge and experience with multiple-scattering theory, algorithm developing, coding, and application of such methods, and with databases and modern data use paradigms, e.g., machine-learning and physics-based indicators. All are principle R&D component.

  • Demonstrated knowledge of relativistic physics, e.g., spin-orbit and exchange-correlation methods in density-functional theory.

  • Demonstrated knowledge or expertise in object-oriented and parallel programming in Fortran and C/C++. Experience using databases, shell scripting, data-correlation, and modern data use paradigms.

Department/Program & College Description:

Department Unit/Website:

Proposed Start Date:February 1, 2021

Proposed End Date or Length of Term:January 31, 2022

Number of Months Employed Per Year:12 Month Work Period

Time Type:Full time

Pay Grade:Post Docs

Application Instructions:

To apply for this position, please click on “Apply” and complete the Employment Application. Please be prepared to enter or attach the following:

1) Resume/Curriculum Vitae

2) Letter of Application/Cover Letter

3) Contact Information for Three References

The candidate selected for hire may be requested to provide documentation to verify highest degree completed.

If you have questions regarding this application process, please email or call 515-294-4800 or Toll Free: 1-877-477-7485.

Original Posting Date:November 25, 2020

Posting Close Date:March 1, 2021

Job Requisition Number:R3705

Iowa State University ( is classified as a Carnegie Foundation Doctoral/Research University-Extensive, a member of the Association of American Universities (AAU), and ranked by U.S. News and World Report as one of the top public universities in the nation. More than 30,000 students are enrolled and are served by over 6,200 faculty and staff.

Iowa State University is a global and culturally diverse university committed to providing an inclusive, equitable, and diverse environment for both learning and employment. We know that diversity in experience and perspective is vital to advancing innovation, critical thinking, solving complex problems, and building an inclusive academic community. At Iowa State, we translate these values into action by seeking individuals who have experience working with diverse students, colleagues, and constituents. The university has an expectation that all employees will demonstrate a contribution to diversity and inclusion as embodied in Iowa State University’s Principles of Community ( .

All offers of employment, oral and written, are contingent upon the university’s verification of credentials and other information required by federal and state law, ISU policies/procedures, and may include the completion of a background check and/or a consumer credit check.

Iowa State University is an Equal Opportunity/Affirmative Action employer. All qualified applicants will receive consideration for employment without regard to race, color, age, religion, sex, sexual orientation, gender identity, genetic information, national origin, marital status, disability, or protected veteran status and will not be discriminated against. Inquiries can be directed to the Office of Equal Opportunity, 3410 Beardshear Hall, 515 Morrill Road, 515 294-7612, email

If you have questions about the application process please email or call 515-294-4800 or Toll-Free at 1-877-477-7485. Iowa State University provides reasonable accommodations to applicants and employees with disabilities. Applicants with questions about access or requiring a reasonable accommodation for any part of the application or hiring process should email or call (515) 294-4800 or Toll-Free: (877) 477-7485. TTY users are welcome to use the Iowa Relay Service number by dialing 7-1-1 or (800) 735-2942.

General ISU compensation information can be found here: