Post-Doctoral Fellow – Polymer Synthesis

Johns Hopkins Applied Physics Lab

Job Description


Are you motivated by imagining creative solutions to tough problems?


Are you searching for a role that leads to significant real-world impacts by applying your strengths in polymer chemistry?


If so, we're looking for someone like you to join our team at APL.


The Multifunctional Materials and Nanostructures Group is seeking a creative post-doctoral fellow with experience in polymer synthesis to help develop solutions to diverse problems. You will apply your strong background in chemistry to develop solutions for the government's most significant problems. Materials design requires a balance between simplicity and complexity. Practicality demands simplicity for sourcing, scaling, and cost. Functionality demands complexity and novelty to afford highly-specific and unique capabilities that can progress the future of materials science. To balance these design principles, modern polymeric materials require new and scalable synthetic polymer tools to access complex materials in a practical sense (e.g. controlled radical polymerizations, supramolecular polymerizations, stepwise synthesis). This postdoctoral position will focus on developing new polymer topologies and synthetic tools for accessing complex materials in a practical sense.


Envision joining a collaborative team that is passionate about research and committed to excellence in innovation, open communication, and diversity. We strive to cultivate a collaborative atmosphere to achieve groundbreaking impact. Our APL team values integrity and innovative ideas that will ensure our Nation’s preeminence in the 21st century.


We enable our team members to generate and lead their own research ideas as well as publish their findings. At APL, we are a hardworking, multidisciplinary team committed to solving diverse problems while embracing risk with the goal of realizing creative solutions. Our group strives to foster a collaborative ecosystem with world-class expertise that achieves innovative impact.


As a Post-doctoral Fellow, your primary responsibilities will be to…

  • Design and lead an independent research project focused on developing new technical capabilities for new business development.
  • Perform experiments at the direction of a project manager and assist with the development of new materials via chemical synthesis, material characterization, and performance testing, both in the lab and in the field.
  • Perform detailed data analyses and explain characterization results.
  • Document and present technical work internally and externally.
  • Work on projects both independently and as part of a team.
  • Develop and propose your own research projects.
  • Publish your research and present at conferences.


You meet our minimum qualifications for the job if you...

  • Possess a Ph.D. in chemistry, materials science or a related field with a focus on polymer synthesis.
  • Have 1+ year research experience in a laboratory environment.
  • Have a background in precision polymer synthesis, novel polymer topologies, or stimuli-responsive systems.
  • Have published research in peer-reviewed journals.
  • Are comfortable communicating research findings in various settings.
  • Are willing and able to carry out laboratory research and travel for field testing, sponsor visits, conference attendance, and presentations.
  • Are able to obtain a Secret level security clearance. If selected, you will be subject to a government security clearance investigation and must meet the requirements for access to classified information. Security clearance eligibility requires you to be a U.S. citizen.

You’ll go above and beyond our minimum requirements if you...

  • Are familiar with nuclear magnetic resonance spectroscopy, gas chromatography, liquid chromatography, gel permeation chromatograph and mass spectrometry.
  • Have experience working as member of a diverse team in a collaborative manner.


Why work at APL?

The Johns Hopkins University Applied Physics Laboratory (APL) brings world-class expertise to our nation’s most critical defense, security, space and science challenges. While we are dedicated to solving complex challenges and pioneering new technologies, what makes us truly outstanding is our culture. We offer a vibrant, welcoming atmosphere where you can bring your authentic self to work, continue to grow, and build strong connections with inspiring teammates.


At APL, we celebrate our differences and encourage creativity and bold, new ideas. Our employees enjoy generous benefits, including a robust education assistance program, unparalleled retirement contributions, and a healthy work/life balance. APL’s campus is located in the Baltimore-Washington metro area. Learn more about our career opportunities at http://www.jhuapl.edu/careers.

About Us

APL is an Equal Opportunity/Affirmative Action employer. All qualified applicants will receive consideration for employment without regard to race, creed, color, religion, sex, gender identity or expression, sexual orientation, national origin, age, physical or mental disability, genetic information, veteran status, occupation, marital or familial status, political opinion, personal appearance, or any other characteristic protected by applicable law.


APL is committed to promoting an innovative environment that embraces diversity, encourages creativity, and supports inclusion of new ideas. In doing so, we are committed to providing reasonable accommodation to individuals of all abilities, including those with disabilities. If you require a reasonable accommodation to participate in any part of the hiring process, please contact Accommodations@jhuapl.edu. Only by ensuring that everyone’s voice is heard are we empowered to be bold, do great things, and make the world a better place.

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