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Hydropower Engineer

Oak Ridge National Laboratory
Oak Ridge, Tennessee
Full-time salaried position plus full benefits and retirement plan.
Closing date
Mar 23, 2023

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Position Type
PhD, Other
Contract Type
Organization Type

Requisition Id 10171 


Oak Ridge National Laboratory (ORNL, 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. The Biodiversity and Sustainable Systems Section within the Environmental Sciences Division (ESD; at ORNL is seeking to hire a Hydropower Engineer with the skills and creativity to apply novel water resources, mechanical, and/or power system engineering knowledge to support ORNL’s long-term water power technologies research and development (R&D) efforts.


We are especially interested in qualified candidates who have strong experience, vision, and publication records in the frontier of national/international conventional hydropower and/or marine energy R&D efforts. The successful candidate will have the opportunity to lead or contribute to a variety of national water power R&D initiatives, interact with a diverse set of stakeholders, and collaborate with interdisciplinary researchers in the fields of hydrology, hydraulics, power systems, ecology, and environmental economics. The candidate will benefit from the unique capabilities at ORNL and is expected to develop cutting-edge research for a clean, renewable, and sustainable energy future.


ESD is an interdisciplinary research and development organization with more than 60 years of achievement in local, regional, national, and international environmental research. Our vision is to expand scientific knowledge and develop innovative strategies and technologies that will strengthen the nation’s leadership in creating solutions to help sustain the Earth’s natural resources. Our scientists conduct research, develop technology, and perform analyses to understand and assess responses of environmental systems at the environment-human interface and the consequences of alternative energy and environmental strategies.


Major Duties/Responsibilities:

  • Lead or contribute to cutting-edge water power R&D initiatives that leverage ORNL research capabilities in modeling and simulation, sensors and controls, environmental science, advanced manufacturing science and technology, and advanced materials.
  • Propose, develop, and implement novel water power theories and technologies to promote the sustainable growth of national clean and renewable energy.
  • Enhance, develop, and sustain working relationships between ORNL researchers and the broad water power community, including sponsors of water power R&D, energy / water stakeholders, and policy influencers.
  • Mentor early-career staff in the development and execution of water power science and technology research.
  • Publish high-quality and impactful peer-reviewed publications.
  • Maintain strong commitment to the implementation and perpetuation of values and ethics.


Basic Qualifications:

  • PhD in Engineering, Phyics or related discipline with a minimum of two years' experience or MS degree in Engineering, Physics, or related discipline with a minimum of seven years' experience


Preferred Qualifications:

  • 3 years of post-PhD or 5 years of post-MS experience
  • Experience in at least one of the following fields:
  • Design or operation of hydropower, pumped-storage, or marine hydrokinetics facilities
  • Hydropower resource evaluation
  • Hydropower asset management
  • Hydropower-environmental impact assessment
  • Reservoir system optimization or production cost modeling
  • Field, laboratory, or numerical testing of water power technologies or hydraulic structures
  • Excellent interpersonal, oral, and written communication skills
  • Strong record of productive and creative research, demonstrated by peer-reviewed publications and presentations at scientific conferences
  • Capability of working collaboratively in a team environment and interacting effectively with a broad range of colleagues across both national and international institutions


Other Information:

Applications should include a cover letter, current CV, and a list of at least three references.


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.

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