Battery Chemistry Postdoc

Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory

United States

July 11, 2021


Berkeley Lab's Molecular Foundry Division has an opening for a Battery Chemistry Postdoc.

A team of scientists at the Molecular Foundry led by the Helms group are engaged in a multi-PI program in materials discovery and development for high energy density lithium-metal batteries, which are needed to accelerate the electrification of transportation. This project is funded through the ARPA-E SCALEUP program.

The Postdoc will lead the electrochemical testing of new electrolytes, as well as other components in lithium-metal cells for applications in electric aircraft. This will be done with the aid of machine learning and an AI-driven robotics platform for autonomous electrolyte screening and optimization for key performance metrics controlling power and power fade in electric aircraft battery cells. Key collaborators include PIs and students from Carnegie Mellon University (Viswanathan group), as well as top scientists from two high- profile battery start-ups and OEMs for battery packs and aircraft.

What You Will Do:

  • Provide technical expertise and leadership in electrochemistry, specifically cell assembly and testing of novel battery materials in lithium metal batteries.
  • Develop and apply quantitative techniques, generally electrochemical in nature, to the study of novel Li-ion-conducting polymer and hybrid electrolytes, e.g., in symmetric Li/Li cells and Li/cathode full cells.
  • Play a key role in materials selection and cell design for characterization by electron microscopy as well as X-ray techniques (e.g., tomography, scattering, spectroscopy, etc.) at the Advanced Light Source.
  • Work with collaborators at Carnegie Mellon University on autonomous electrolyte screening and optimization to meet SCALEUP program targets for performance and manufacturability.
  • Develop standard operating procedures for preparing cell components for assembly as well as cells for testing.
  • Play a key role in maintaining a robust and inclusive safety culture.
  • Publish in peer reviewed journals; contribute to scientific research papers, reports, review articles; present oral reports.
  • What is Required:

  • Ph.D. in chemistry, chemical engineering, materials science and engineering, or mechanical engineering.
  • Extensive experience in electrochemistry.
  • Ability to perform post-mortem characterization of electrodes by standard microscopy and surface analytical techniques.
  • Demonstrated knowledge or expertise in electroanalytical and electrochemical cell characterization.
  • Demonstrated ability to conduct and perform collaborative research and effectively interact with a broad range of colleagues.
  • Demonstrated ability to accurately and eloquently represent and promote scientific projects to audiences of diverse technical backgrounds.
  • Strong publication record in top-rated scientific journals, with extensive experience in the preparation and handling of scientific manuscripts, reports and research posters.
  • Excellent written and verbal communication skills.
  • Ability to guide and train junior researchers.
  • Notes:

  • This is a full-time, 1-year, postdoctoral appointment with the possibility of renewal based upon satisfactory job performance, continuing availability of funds and ongoing operational needs. You must have less than 4 years of paid postdoctoral experience. Salary for Postdoctoral positions depends on years of experience post-degree.
  • Salary will be predetermined based on postdoctoral step rates.
  • This position may be subject to a background check. Any convictions will be evaluated to determine if they directly relate to the responsibilities and requirements of the position. Having a conviction history will not automatically disqualify an applicant from being considered for employment.
  • Berkeley Lab is committed to Inclusion, Diversity, Equity and Accountability (IDEA) and strives to hire individuals from different backgrounds, experiences, and perspectives who share these same values and commitments.
  • Work will be primarily performed at Lawrence Berkeley National Lab, 1 Cyclotron Road, Berkeley, CA.
  • Berkeley Lab is an Equal Opportunity/Affirmative Action Employer. All qualified applicants will receive consideration for employment without regard to race, color, religion, sex, sexual orientation, gender identity, national origin, disability, age, or protected veteran status. Berkeley Lab is in compliance with the Pay Transparency Nondiscrimination Provision under 41 CFR 60-1.4. Click here to view the poster and supplement: "Equal Employment Opportunity is the Law."

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