R&D S&E, Mechanical Engineers (Senior or Principal) – Uncertainty Quantification
Rockledge, FL

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Sandia National Laboratories is the nation's premier science and engineering lab for national security and technology innovation with major facilities in Albuquerque, New Mexico and Livermore, California. We are a world-class team of scientists, engineers, technologists, post docs, and visiting researchers all focused on cutting-edge technology, ranging from homeland defense, global security, biotechnology, and environmental preservation to energy and combustion research, computer security, and nuclear defense. To learn more, please visit our website at www.sandia.gov .

Sandia National Laboratories is searching for Mechanical Engineers for the Validation and Uncertainty Quantification Process Department located in the Albuquerque, NM facility. This is a permanent, full-time position. The candidate selected for this role will be required to obtain and maintain a DOE-granted “Q-level” security clearance. Security clearance is not required to start.

Department Description

The mission of the Validation and Uncertainty Quantification Processes Department (1544) is to provide research, development, and application of mathematical and experimental techniques to assess the credibility of physics-based computational simulations. The multi-disciplinary team, experienced in simulation and experimentation, draws from a wide range of disciplines, including fluid dynamics, electromagnetics, radiation effects, solid and structural mechanics, heat transfer, numerical methods, optimization, statistics, and risk assessment, to support the laboratories mission.

Job Summary

The Validation and Uncertainty Quantification Processes Department has the responsibility for developing new and practical techniques for computer model verification, validation, and uncertainty quantification (V&V/UQ). In addition, Department staff members collaborate with other experts to apply these V&V/UQ methods to engineering studies conducted at Sandia, including Quantification of Margins and Uncertainties (QMU) assessments for the nuclear weapons stockpile. Department staff members are engaged in collaborations across Sandia, within the NNSA Tri-Laboratory community, with other government agencies, and with various U.S. industrial partners.

The Validation and Uncertainty Quantification Department within Sandia's Engineering Sciences Center is looking for talented individuals to perform research, development and application of verification, validation, and uncertainty quantification processes and algorithms to challenging computational simulation studies in support of core Sandia mission areas. This work involves performing high performance computing-based simulations and data analysis in partnership with engineering sciences staff in many discipline areas, including solid mechanics, structural dynamics, heat transfer, fluid mechanics, aerodynamics, reacting flows, and multi-physics applications. The work will involve designing computational simulation studies to quantify uncertainties arising from inherent variabilities and epistemic uncertainties, performing and analyzing mesh refinement studies to quantify numerical bias errors in model solutions, analyzing and comparing simulation and experimental data to compute validation metrics, and assessing simulation code and model predictive characteristics. This position may also involve the development and application of new V&V/UQ methods. Our goal is to enable "quantification of margins and uncertainties" (QMU) studies for risk-informed decision making, with a credible and quantified predictive basis.

Candidates in this role will research issues in such areas as physical mechanics, fluid dynamics, hydraulics, thermodynamics, vibration, physical metallurgy, power engineering, kinematics, and heat transfer systems for metals, plastics, composite, and combination structures. He or she will apply research to the design, development, analysis, and testing of mechanical and electromechanical systems, instruments, controls, engines, and machines. Candidates will analyze the ability of systems to withstand stress imposed by conditions such as temperature, load, motion, and vibration and performs analysis of system operation to design requirements.

Primary Job Duties
  • Plans, conceives, conducts, or manages research and development for Sandia's customers and sponsors.
  • Directs systematic study toward a fuller knowledge or understanding of the fundamental aspects of phenomena and of observable facts, and discovers new approaches to achieve goals.
  • Creates new understandings and capabilities by using the scientific method's hypothesis, test, and evaluation techniques; critical review; or similar engineering research and development methods.
  • Initiates, designs, develops, executes, and evaluates new processes, products, or systems through basic and applied research.
  • Uses engineering principles to research, design, or develop structures, instruments, machines, experiments, processes, systems, theories, or technologies; to construct or operate the same with full cognizance of their design; or to forecast their behavior under specific operating conditions.
  • Undertakes development and possible technology transfer of solutions, products, principles or technology.
  • Undertakes creative work, making systematic use of investigation or experimentation, to discover or revise knowledge of reality, and uses this knowledge to devise new applications.

2 openings


Knowledge, Skills & Abilities
  • Advanced technical degree or significant equivalent experience.
  • Technical knowledge and competencies appropriate to the position.
  • Thorough knowledge of and applied experience with scientific and engineering methods and with the discipline's standards for the ethical conduct of research.
  • Thorough knowledge of and experience with designing, planning, and executing research, design, and development projects.
  • Demonstrated knowledge of and experience with implementing Sandia policies affecting research, design, and development activities, projects, or initiatives.
  • Demonstrated ability to team across disciplines.
  • Advanced degree in a Science or Engineering discipline (e.g. aerospace, mechanical, chemical, manufacturing) or related field (e.g. physics, applied mathematics, systems or operations research, etc.)
  • Examples of computational modeling and simulation, including mathematical modeling and solution of coupled systems of partial differential equations (PDEs)
  • Strong verbal and written communication skills and an ability to interact well with fellow technical workers of diverse technical backgrounds
  • Ability to publish and to present cutting edge technical work at technical conferences
  • Ph.D. in a relevant Science or Engineering discipline (e.g. aerospace, mechanical, chemical, manufacturing) or related field (e.g. physics, applied mathematics, systems or operations research, etc.)
  • Experience in V&V/UQ methodology development
  • Experience in the solid mechanics and/or structural dynamics discipline
  • Experience with advanced codes for engineering simulation running on massively parallel computing clusters
  • Experience with Monte Carlo and Latin Hypercube sampling for uncertainty quantification, reliability methods (FORM, SORM), sensitivity methods, and/or stochastic expansion methods
  • Experience with code and solution verification for systems of partial differential equations
  • Software development experience, including working with development teams using object-oriented frameworks would be valuable

Security Clearance

Position requires a Department of Energy (DOE)-granted Q-level security clearance.

Sandia is required by DOE directive to conduct a pre-employment background review that includes personal reference checks, law enforcement record and credit checks, and employment and education verifications. Applicants for employment must be able to obtain and maintain a DOE Q-level security clearance, which requires U.S. citizenship.

Applicants offered employment with Sandia are subject to a federal background investigation to meet the requirements for access to classified information or matter if the duties of the position require a DOE security clearance. Substance abuse or illegal drug use, falsification of information, criminal activity, serious misconduct or other indicators of untrustworthiness can cause a clearance to be denied or terminated by the DOE, rendering the inability to perform the duties assigned and resulting in termination of employment.

To learn more about this position and to apply online, please visit us at http://www.sandia.gov/careers/search-openings.html , click Advanced Search and reference Job Opening ID Number: 642097 .

U.S. Citizenship Normally Required. Equal Opportunity Employer. M/F/D/V.