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5 months ago
Science and Technology Facilities Council
Salary: £38318 - £42576
Location: Didcot
Job type: Permanent
Category: Research & Development Jobs
Brief Description

Salary: £38,318 - £42,576 per annum
Grade: RC-E
Contract Type: Open-Ended
Hours: Full Time
Closing Date: 16th August 2019


The Disordered Materials Group at ISIS specialises in the use of diffraction methods to characterise the structure of liquids, amorphous solids and complex systems such as fluid filled porous media used in chemical engineering applications. The existing team of six staff scientists operate a suite of three neutron diffraction beamlines, a wide range of support laboratory equipment, and a comprehensive suite of analysis software used for performing world class studies across a broad range of academic and industrial disordered systems research. Of the three neutron beamlines managed by the team, the SANDALS diffractometer has established an internationally renowned reputation for atomistic structural characterisation of light element containing liquids and glasses. SANDALS performs diffraction studies across many research areas, including the structure of molecular liquids, aqueous solutions and amorphous materials. Particular emphasis in its research programme is placed on the use of neutron diffraction for establishing atomic and molecular structure-property relations on length scales up to 3nm.

We are looking for a highly motivated Scientist to join the Disordered Materials Group to:

* provide a high level of local expertise to support visiting research teams using SANDALS
* contribute to an active programme of developments (new instrumentation, novel sample environment devices and advanced data analysis software)
* expand the research programme on the Disordered Materials Group instruments, via both an active personal research programme or in collaboration with other group members and/or external users.

The responsibilities will typically be split equally between the 3 core activities but may vary dependent on the skills and interests.

Your responsibilities will include:

* provide local contact support for users of SANDALS and other instruments within the Disordered Materials Group
* contribute to the development of new liquids and disordered materials diffraction capabilities at ISIS, including new instrumentation, sample environment facilities and data analysis techniques
* assist in the operation, support and maintenance of the range of general laboratory equipment that the Disordered Materials Group manages for its user community (e.g. lab XRD, XRF, pycnometers etc.)
* seek funding for instrument and other equipment upgrades
* represent and actively work on increasing the Disordered Materials user base
* provide supervision for students and visiting researchers
* conduct and disseminate research via publications and conference presentations
* conduct tours for visiting Scientists and visiting members of the public.

Contacts and Communication

You will interact extensively with visitors, predominantly from higher education institutions but also from industry. You will be expected to present your scientific work and represent the group at international conferences and meetings.

Organization Description

UK Research and Innovation is a new entity that brings together nine partners to create an independent organisation with a strong voice for research and innovation, and a vision to ensure the UK maintains its world-leading position in research and innovation.
The Science and Technology Facilities Council is a world-leading multi-disciplinary science organisation, and our goal is to deliver economic, societal, scientific and international benefits to the UK and its people – and more broadly to the world.

Shortlisting Criteria



* Ph.D. or equivalent in biology, chemistry, materials science, physics or a related discipline
* recognised international profile in neutron or X-ray diffraction/PDF studies of structurally disordered systems.

Knowledge and Experience


* solid scientific background and clear potential of an independent or collaborative scientific programme
* evidence of a publication record in relevant science areas: soft/hard condensed matter etc. commensurate with experience
* recent experience performing neutron scattering or X-ray diffraction, at a large scale facilities beamline
* extensive experience of analysis methods for neutron or X-ray diffraction/PDF data
* good written and oral skills in English as demonstrated by CV and Cover letter.


* post-doctoral experience in relevant science areas: soft/hard condensed matter, life sciences etc.
* experience of neutron or X-ray small angle scattering
* experience of NMR
* experience of Mass Spectrometry
* experience in atomistic modelling (Monte Carlo or Molecular Dynamics) of liquids, glassy materials or complex systems
* experience of developing new sample environment facilities for neutron or X-ray diffraction
* demonstrated potential of software development in one or more programming languages (e.g. FORTRAN, C++, Java, Python).

Interview Criteria

Knowledge and Experience


* demonstration of solid scientific background knowledge and clear potential of an independent or collaborative scientific programme that would make advantageous use of the instrumentation supported by the ISIS Disordered Materials Group
* experience performing neutron scattering or X-ray diffraction, at a large scale facilities beamline
* demonstration of knowledge about analysis methods for neutron or X-ray diffraction/PDF data.


* demonstration of practical knowledge of neutron or X-ray small angle scattering
* demonstration of practical knowledge of NMR
* demonstration of practical knowledge of Mass Spectrometry
* demonstration of knowledge of atomistic modelling (Monte Carlo or Molecular Dynamics) of liquids, glassy materials or complex systems
* demonstration of experience in developing new sample environment facilities for neutron or X-ray diffraction
* demonstration of knowledge of software development in one or more programming languages (e.g. FORTRAN, C++, Java, Python).

Personal skills and qualities


* good interpersonal, communication and presentation skills
* ability to interact effectively with staff and ISIS users at all levels
* ability to work collaboratively and individually to support the user community
* demonstration of a responsible attitude to personal safety and the safety of others.

Special Requirements


* willing to work in radiation areas
* willing to work out-of-hours when required for experimental programme support for the instrument, at night or weekends
* willing to work in confined spaces (2x2 m2 floor area)
* willing to travel abroad (attend conferences etc.).

UKRI supports research in areas that include animal health, agriculture and food security, and bioscience for health which includes research on animals, genetic modification and stem cell research. Whilst you may not have direct involvement in this type of research, you should consider whether this conflicts with your personal values or beliefs.

To enable us to hire the very best people we will conduct a full and comprehensive pre-employment check as an essential part of the recruitment process on all individuals that are offered a position with UKRI. This will include a security check and an extreme organisations affiliation check.

Employee Benefits

UK Research and Innovation recognises and values employees as individuals and aim to provide a pay and rewards package that motivates staff to perform to the best of their ability. The reward package includes a flexible working scheme, a Career Average Revalued Earnings pension scheme, 30 days annual leave allowance and a number of other benefits.

Developing Talent

We are committed to developing employees in their roles throughout their career. Learning and development plans enable employees to continue their professional development through training and development opportunities such as e-learning, classroom training and on-the-job experiences. We encourage our employees to share their learning across teams and organisations.

Equal Opportunities

We strive to make decisions based on individual merit and ability. We welcome applications from all sections of the community and promote equality of opportunity in accordance with the Equality Act 2010. As holders of Disability Confident Employer status, we guarantee to interview all applicants with disabilities who meet the minimum criteria for the vacancy.

As this job does not fulfil the Home Office Code of Practice criterion for obtaining sponsored migrant worker status we will be unable to apply for sponsorship for anyone not eligible to work in the UK. At interview, all shortlisted candidates are required to bring with them identification documents and original documents that prove they hold or can obtain the right to work in the UK.

Online applications only. Please submit a covering letter, CV and research publication list ensuring that the IRC reference is included in the filename description of each document uploaded. Please note that failure to address the above criteria or submitted without a covering letter may result in your application not being considered.

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