You are viewing a preview of this job. Log in or register to view more details about this job.

Postdoctoral Research Associate - Weatherization Assistance Program

Requisition Id 7999 
Oak Ridge National Laboratory is the largest US Department of Energy science and energy laboratory, conducting basic and applied research to deliver transformative solutions to compelling problems in energy and security.
We are seeking a Postdoctoral Research Associate who will support the Integrated Building Deployment and Analysis Group in the Buildings and Transportation Science Division (BTSD), Energy Science and Technology Directorate (ESTD) at Oak Ridge National Laboratory (ORNL).  The Postdoctoral Research Associate will join ORNL’s dedicated team in support of the U.S. Department of Energy (DOE) programs to safely and sustainably reduce energy costs for low-income households.
ORNL supports DOE’s Weatherization Assistance Program (WAP) with a variety of activities, including through the evaluation of various weatherization programs and efforts. The successful applicant to this is position would work in the areas of residential building weatherization and indoor air quality and have the opportunity to participate in a wide range of research and development opportunities.
ORNL has been tasked by the DOE Weatherization Assistance Program to perform a study to investigate the safety of weatherizing homes with existing vermiculite insulation. Vermiculite insulation has the high potential for containing asbestos. The program has no data on the actual impact of diagnostic measurements (e.g., blower door measurements) or the installation of energy conservation measures on asbestos levels in homes with existing vermiculite insulation. Questions include: Does blower door testing increase asbestos levels in homes with existing vermiculite insulation? Is there a way to safely insulate over existing vermiculite insulation without impacting indoor asbestos levels and/or occupant and worker health? A field study is envisioned to measure indoor asbestos levels in homes with existing vermiculite insulation before, during, and after (a) blower door tests are conducted and (b) insulation is installed consistent with program and industry standards. The study results will be used by DOE to develop additional guidance on strategies to address asbestos contamination in vermiculite insulation (i.e., how to better approach the weatherization of homes with existing vermiculite insulation, including precautions needed, avoidance criteria, etc.).
Major Duties/Responsibilities: 
The successful candidate will be responsible for conducting, coordinating, and reporting complex research assignments related to the vermiculite study. This will include:
  • Contributing to the experimental plan for the study
  • Implementing the plan by working and contracting with states, local weatherization agencies, asbestos contractors, and others
  • Collecting and ensuring the quality of all study data
  • Analyzing the data writing the final report
  • Participate in the development and completion of both policy- and audit-related projects and reports.
  • Participate in the development of progress reports, white papers, fact sheets, case studies, and other guidance and reporting documents for the program
Basic Qualifications
  • PhD in mechanical engineering, architectural engineering, or related field within the last 5 years
Preferred Qualifications
  • Experience and education in indoor air quality
  • Proficiency in statistical analysis
  • Knowledge of building science
  • Proficiency with the use of the Microsoft Office suite, particularly Word and Excel 
  • Experience with statistical software (e.g. R or similar)
  • Experience with indoor air quality modeling software such as CONTAM
  • Experience with building energy modeling tools such as EnergyPlus or OpenStudio
  • Excellent written and oral communication skills
  • Motivated self-starter with the ability to work independently and to participate creatively in collaborative teams across the laboratory 
  • Ability to function well in a fast-paced research environment, set priorities to accomplish multiple tasks within deadlines, and adapt to ever changing needs
Please submit three letters of reference when applying to this position. You can upload these directly to your application or have them sent to with the position title and number referenced in the subject line.
Instructions to upload documents to your candidate profile:
  • Login to your account via
  • View Profile
  • Under the My Documents section, select Add a Document
Applicants cannot have received their Ph.D. more than five years prior to the date of application and must complete all degree requirements before starting their appointment. The appointment length will be for up to 24 months with the potential for extension. Initial appointments and extensions are subject to performance and the availability of funding.
Moving can be overwhelming and expensive. UT-Battelle offers a generous relocation package to ease the transition process. Domestic and international relocation assistance is available for certain positions. If invited to interview, be sure to ask your Recruiter (Talent Acquisition Partner) for details.

For more information about our benefits, working here, and living here, visit the “About” tab at
This position will remain open for a minimum of 5 days after which it will close when a qualified candidate is identified and/or hired.
We accept Word (.doc, .docx), Adobe (unsecured .pdf), Rich Text Format (.rtf), and HTML (.htm, .html) up to 5MB in size. Resumes from third party vendors will not be accepted; these resumes will be deleted and the candidates submitted will not be considered for employment.

If you have trouble applying for a position, please email

ORNL is an equal opportunity employer. All qualified applicants, including individuals with disabilities and protected veterans, are encouraged to apply. UT-Battelle is an E-Verify employer.