Bulk Solids Processing Postdoctoral Research Associate-Nationwide job 7/21/2018

Battelle Energy Alliance Nationwide

AJE Ref #
Job Classification
Full Time
Job Type
Company Ref #
Entry Level (0 - 2 years)
Bachelors Degree



Job Title: Bioenergy/Biomass Postdoctoral Research Associate
Org: Bioenergy Technologies
Contact: Jessica.Dixon@inl.gov
Work Location: Idaho Falls, ID (Town) - 9x80s schedule



Empowering the Nation's Energy Future

MISSION: Discover, demonstrate and secure innovative nuclear energy solutions, other clean energy options and critical infrastructure.

VISION: INL will change the world's energy future and secure our critical infrastructure.



Idaho National Laboratory is seeking a Bioenergy/Biomass Postdoctoral Research Associate.

In this role you will be focusing on providing solutions to bioenergy problems. This posting is for multiple post-doctoral positions to pursue laboratory and systems-level (pilot-scale) research to understand the handling, feeding, and attrition behavior of diverse biomass materials in laboratory and pilot-scale processing equipment, including bins, hoppers, augers, dryers, and pellet presses.

The work, which will be divided according to the expertise of new hires, will involve physical tests, advanced statistical analysis of collected data and use of that data in machine learning algorithms to improve the performance of unit operations.

INL Bioenergy Program encompasses research in harvest, collection, storage, preprocessing, and physical, mechanical, thermal, and chemical characterization of biomass materials. Multiple post-doctoral researchers are needed to pursue laboratory and systems-level (pilot-scale) research to understand the handling, feeding, and attrition behavior of diverse particulate biomass materials in laboratory and pilot-scale processing equipment, including bins, hoppers, augers, dryers, and pellet presses. The research will also include efforts to develop new test methods to measure required bulk and particle-level properties as functions of the dominant variables, which include particle size/shape distributions, moisture content, particle microstructure, particle chemical composition, and surface properties, such as adhesion, cohesion, and free energy. INL currently conducts preprocessing tests at laboratory and pilot-scale (100 gram batch to 3 ton/hr.) on a wide range of materials to determine their viability as feed stocks for bioenergy applications. Another aspect of this research is to assist in collecting and analyzing the data that is generated during these research activities and also establish machine learning algorithms to allow automated active control of equipment to improve performance based upon data that is collected automatically. Data that is currently collected automatically or will be collected automatically includes particle size/shape distributions, rate of material throughput, air flow, bulk density, moisture content, flowability, inorganics content (ash speciation), and organic composition.



Doctoral degree in Mechanical Engineering or comparable disciplines.

PhD requirements must be completed by commencement of appointment and within the previous 5 years.

Demonstrated oral and published written communication skills in English language.


The preferred candidates will have experience in one or more of the following areas:

(1) the flow and attrition of bulk solid materials,

(2) developing and applying machine learning or similar artificial intelligence algorithms, and

(3) applying advanced statistical analysis to understand correlations between confounded predictor and response variables in uncontrolled experiments.


To be eligible for employment at INL males between ages 18 and 25 must register (or must have registered) with the Selective Service System (SSS). This includes U.S. born and naturalized citizens, parolees, undocumented immigrants, legal permanent residents, asylum seekers, refugees, and all males with visas of any kind which expired more than 30 days ago. The few individuals who are exempt from this requirement are those on current non-immigrant visas. For more information see www.sss.gov.



Employee Job Functions are physical actions and/or working conditions associated with the position. These functions may also constitute essential functions for the job position which the employee must be able to fulfill, with or without accommodation. Information provided below is to help describe the job so that the applicant has a reasonable understanding of the job duties/expectations. An applicant's ability to perform and/or tolerate these actions and conditions will be discussed and workplace accommodations may be made on a case-by-case basis following an individualized assessment of the applicant and other considerations, including but not limited to any governing safety standards.

Motor Abilities: Must be able to walk and stand for prolonged periods of time, bending/stooping, squatting, twisting, applying torque (arms), pushing/pulling, overhead work, grasping/gripping, fine motor control (hands, lifting 35 lbs. max, moderate exertion, and repetitive work.

Special Senses: Visually demanding work, near vision, far vision, depth perception, basic color discrimination, speech discrimination, audio alarms, ability to smell.

Work Conditions: High noises ( 85dB), heights, cold stress, hazardous chemical/waste, ladders 6 feet, machine/electrical hazards, vibrating equipment, protective clothing, respirator use, heavy equipment, motor vehicle use, typing/keyboard, working in excess of 8 hrs./day, overtime/irregular hours, working along.



August 20, 2018 (11:59 p.m., MST)



Must be familiar with, and comply with all relevant health and safety requirements. Must be knowledgeable of emergency action policies and procedures, methods for reporting/resolving work practices or conditions to available cognizant professionals.


When applying to positions please provide a resume and answer all questions on the following screens. Applicants, who fail to provide a resume or answer the questions, may be deemed ineligible for consideration.


INL is a science-based, applied engineering national laboratory dedicated to supporting the U.S. Department of Energy's mission in nuclear energy research, science, and national defense. With more than 4,300 scientists, researchers and support staff, the laboratory works with national and international governments, universities and industry partners to discover new science and develop technologies that underpin the nation's nuclear and renewable energy, national security and environmental missions.


Idaho Falls is conveniently situated near many national treasures such as Yellowstone National Park, Teton National Park, Jackson, WY, etc. For more information about the area, please visit www.visitidahofalls.com and www.visitidaho.org.


Idaho National Laboratory (INL) is an Equal Employment Opportunity (EEO) employer. It is the policy of INL to provide equal employment opportunities to all qualified applicants without regard to race, color, religion, sex, sexual orientation, gender identity, national origin, age, protected veteran or disabled status, or genetic information.

#Nationwide Job
#National Job
#Statewide Job
#Idaho National


Idaho National Laboratory is one of the U.S. Department of Energy’s 17 national laboratories. With roughly 4,000 scientists, engineers and support personnel, the lab also stands as one of Idaho’s largest employers. At INL’s three primary facility areas – the Advanced Test Reactor Complex, Materials and Fuels Complex, and Research and Education Campus – researchers perform work in support of DOE’s mission to “discover the solutions to power and secure America’s future.” More specifically, INL is the nation’s leading center of nuclear energy research and development. Day-to-day management and operation of the laboratory is the responsibility of Battelle Energy Alliance.

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2525 Fremont Avenue
Idaho Falls, ID 83415

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