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Postdoctoral Research Associate - Machine Learning

Job ID 504 Date posted 11/28/2017

Brookhaven National Laboratory is a multipurpose research institution funded primarily by the U.S. Department of Energy’s Office of Science. Located on the center of Long Island, New York, Brookhaven Lab brings world-class facilities and expertise to the most exciting and important questions in basic and applied science—from the birth of our universe to the sustainable energy technology of tomorrow. We operate cutting-edge large-scale facilities for studies in physics, chemistry, biology, medicine, applied science, and a wide range of advanced technologies. The Laboratory's almost 3,000 scientists, engineers, and support staff are joined each year by more than 4,000 visiting researchers from around the world. Our award-winning history, including seven Nobel Prizes, stretches back to 1947, and we continue to unravel mysteries from the nanoscale to the cosmic scale, and everything in between. Brookhaven is operated and managed by Brookhaven Science Associates, which was founded by the Research Foundation for the State University of New York on behalf of Stony Brook University, and Battelle, a nonprofit applied science and technology organization.

The mission of the Collider-Accelerator Department (C-AD) is to develop, improve and operate the suite of particle / heavy ion accelerators used to carry out the program of accelerator-based experiments at Brookhaven National Laboratory (BNL); to support the experimental program including design, construction and operation of the beam transports to the experiments, plus support of detector and research needs of the experiments; to design and construct new accelerator facilities in support of the BNL and national missions. The C-A Department supports an international user community of over 1,500 scientists. The department performs all these functions in an environmentally-responsible and safe manner, under a rigorous conduct of operations approach.  The C-A Department has an opening for a postdoctoral Research Associate to participate in a two-year research project in Accelerator Control Systems.

The Collider-Accelerator Department has an opening for a two-year term Post-Doctoral Research Associate within the Accelerator Division to work with the control systems of the Relativistic Heavy Ion Collider (RHIC) and perform analysis of accelerator data. The ideal candidate will develop new systems for analysis and control of the accelerators using predictive analytics, including the use of machine learning and reinforcement learning techniques. Such systems will greatly benefit accelerator operations by leading to advanced fault recognition and mitigation recovery software systems that can be integrated into the accelerator control systems, as well as new methods for automating the controls.

Required Knowledge, Skills and Abilities:

  • Requires Ph.D. in Electrical Engineering, Computer Science, or related area.
  • Knowledge in statistics, performing modeling and simulation using Bayesian-methodology and Markov-chain, Markov-process modeling for particle accelerator control systems.
  • Knowledge and experience with machine learning and reinforcement learning technologies, including TensorFlow and TensorForce
  • Knowledge and experience with accelerator reliability analysis
  • Experience with software development for particle accelerator control systems.
  • Knowledge analyzing accelerator systems failure modes.
  • Experience using Python and Matlab
  • Demonstrated communication skills
  • A record of working successfully with other scientists and engineers
  • Research experience demonstrated through publications and/or presentations

Preferred Knowledge, Skills and Abilities:

  • Experience working in a physics/particle accelerator research environment
  • Knowledge of the EPICS control system software

  • Knowledge of accelerator machine protection systems

  • Knowledge of accelerator instrumentation systems

  • Minimum of 5 years’ experience programming in some combination of C and C++

  • Minimum of 5 years’ experience programming in Java

  • Experience working in UNIX/Linux environments

  • Demonstrated ability to collect requirements, design software architectures that have high performance and robust operation, and anticipate failure situations and future growth


  • BNL policy requires that research associate appointments be made to individuals who have received their doctorate within the past five years.

At Brookhaven National Laboratory we believe that a comprehensive employee benefits program is an important and meaningful part of the compensation employees receive. Our benefits program includes, but is not limited to:

  • Medical Plans
  • Dental Plans
  • Vacation
  • Holidays
  • Life Insurance
  • 401(k) Plan
  • Paid Parental Leave
  • Swimming Pool, Weight Room, Tennis Courts, and many other employee perks and benefits

We invite you to consider Brookhaven National Laboratory for employment. To be considered for this position, please apply online at BNL Careers and enter the job title into the Keyword Search.

Brookhaven National Laboratory (BNL) is an equal opportunity employer committed to ensuring that all qualified applicants receive consideration for employment and will not be discriminated against on the basis of race, color, religion, sex, sexual orientation, gender identity, national origin, age, status as a veteran, disability or any other federal, state or local protected class.

BNL takes affirmative action in support of its policy and to advance in employment individuals who are minorities, women, protected veterans, and individuals with disabilities.

*VEVRAA Federal Contractor

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