Website National Renewable Energy Laboratory

Job Description

The National Renewable Energy Laboratory (NREL) in Golden, Colorado, is the nation’s primary laboratory for research, development, and deployment of renewable energy and energy efficiency technologies. The NREL mission is to develop renewable energy and energy efficient technologies and practices, advance related science and engineering, and transfer knowledge and innovation to address the nation’s energy and environmental goals. The National Bioenergy Center at NREL has an opening for a full time Postdoctoral Researcher within the Chemical and Material Process Development group. The initial appointment is for one year, with possible renewal up to three years.

The National Bioenergy Center is conducting research aimed at upcycling today’s plastics using chemical and biological catalysis and designing tomorrow’s plastics to be recyclable-by-design. This position will focus on rigorous techno-economic analysis and process modeling, life-cycle assessment, and use of the Material Flows through Industry Supply Chain modeling tool to baseline today’s manufacturing processes for plastics and to compare those to new chemical and biological recycling approaches. This position will specifically focus on the development of detailed process models to baseline the business-as-usual cases for commodity plastics manufacturing, and also to write high-impact publications for the chemistry and engineering communities against which to compare innovative concepts in plastics upcycling. Work with a dynamic, multi-disciplinary experimental and modeling team will be a critical component of this position, and analysis will be expected to guide experimental research efforts.

The successful candidate will be able to:

  • assimilate a wide variety of information into assessments
  • contribute to the planning and execution of research and experimental work
  • communicate scientific results effectively, both written and oral
  • author peer-reviewed publications, and
  • work effectively in a large, multidisciplinary team of engineers, chemists, and biologists.

Basic Qualifications

Must be a recent, related PhD graduate within the last three years.

Additional Required Qualifications

  • Research experience with an emphasis on chemical process development, including biomass conversion and/or plastics manufacturing
  • Demonstrated experience with process modeling with tools such as Aspen Plus
  • Demonstrated experience with life-cycle assessment tools such as SimaPro
  • PhD degree in chemical engineering or related field

Preferred Qualifications

  • Understanding of current (petroleum) refinery processes
  • Understanding of biomass conversion research and processes
  • Experience in polymer synthesis or use
  • Relevant experience with sustainable materials and practices

Submission Guidelines

Please note that in order to be considered an applicant for any position at NREL you must submit an application form for each position for which you believe you are qualified. Applications are not kept on file for future positions. Please include a cover letter and resume with each position application.

EEO Policy

NREL is dedicated to the principles of equal employment opportunity. NREL promotes a work environment that does not discriminate against workers or job applicants and prohibits unlawful discrimination on the basis of race, color, religion, sex, national origin, disability, age, marital status, ancestry, actual or perceived sexual orientation, gender identity, or veteran status, including special disabled veterans.

NREL validates right to work using E-Verify. NREL will provide the Social Security Administration (SSA) and, if necessary, the Department of Homeland Security (DHS), with information from each new employee’s Form I-9 to confirm work authorization. For additional information, click here.

About Us

The National Renewable Energy Laboratory (NREL) is a leader in the U.S. Department of Energy’s effort to secure an environmentally and economically sustainable energy future. With locations in Golden and Boulder, Colorado, and a satellite office in Washington, D.C., NREL is the primary laboratory for research, development, and deployment of renewable energy technologies in the United States.

NREL is subject to Department of Energy (DOE) access restrictions.  All candidates must be authorized to access the facility per DOE rules and guidance within a reasonable time frame for the specified position in order to be considered for an interview. DOE rules for site access during the interview process are the same regardless of whether the candidate is interviewed on-site, off-site, or via telephone or videoconference.  Additionally, DOE contractor employees are prohibited from participating in certain Foreign Government Talent Recruitment Programs (FGTRPs). If a candidate is currently participating in an FGTRP, they will be required to disclose their participation after receiving an offer of employment and may be required to disengage from participation in the FGTRP prior to commencing employment.

Please review the information on our Hiring Process website before you create an account and apply for a job. We also hope you will learn more about NREL, visit our Careers site, and continue to search for job opportunities at the lab.

NREL discloses to you that a consumer report, including an investigative consumer report containing information as to your character, general reputation, personal characteristics and mode of living, may be obtained for employment purposes as part of the pre-employment background investigation and at any time during your employment. Should an investigative consumer report be requested, you will have the right to request a complete and accurate disclosure of the nature and scope of the investigation requested and a written summary of your rights under the Fair Credit Reporting Act (FCRA).

To apply for this job please visit

©2019 Forum for Sustainability through Life Cycle Innovation e.V. | Contact Us | Legal Info


If you would like to get in touch with us, please feel free to send us a message. Thank you very much in advance.


Log in with your credentials


Forgot your details?

Create Account