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Research Associate / Research Specialist

Woods Hole Oceanographic Institution
Woods Hole, Massachusetts
Closing date
Oct 10, 2021

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Job Summary

The National Ocean Sciences Accelerator Mass Spectrometry (NOSAMS) facility at the Woods Hole Oceanographic Institution (WHOI) is seeking a Research Associate or Research Specialist for the maintenance, development, and operation of two 14C Accelerator Mass Spectrometry (AMS) systems. This is a regular, full-time, exempt position and is eligible for full benefits.

The first AMS system is based upon a 500 kV Pelletron accelerator and incorporates both a conventional graphite sputter source and a unique, gas-accepting, microwave ion source. The second AMS system is based upon a 2.5 MV Tandetron. The Tandetron system is scheduled to be retired in 2022 to be replaced by a Mini Carbon Dating System (MiCaDaS) currently under construction at Ionplus AG. The new MiCaDaS system comes with several sample-to-gas-to ion source interfaces to allow enhanced NOSAMS capabilities and unique research directions.

The level of appointment and supervision will depend on the candidate’s relevant prior experience. The candidate will work within the NOSAMS team to provide high quality 14C measurements and expertise to the ocean science community, and to enhance NOSAMS capabilities. In particular, the candidate is expected to assist in the operation and maintenance of the AMS system for sample analyses to obtain the highest quality measurements. Participation in technology development in one or more of the following topics is anticipated: accelerator physics, ion source operation, ion optics, and sample-to-source interfaces.

The internal working title for this position could be either Research Associate III or Research Specialist. The final level of the position will be determined commensurate with the selected candidate's level of education & experience. 


  • Works independently to maintain and operate an 14C AMS system.
  • Practices judgment and creativity in making adaptations or modifications to instrumentation and laboratory methods.
  • Exercises technical responsibility for organizing and interpreting required collected data.
  • May supervise technical staff personnel within the facility.
  • Develops important techniques and designs that improve NOSAMS capabilities.
  • Writes peer-reviewed publications and presents research results at national and international scientific meetings.

Education & Experience

A Ph.D. is desirable. However, a Masters or B.S. degree with extensive relevant work experience is acceptable. Prior experience with operating and troubleshooting complex systems related to accelerator mass spectrometry would be valuable. Some high-level language programming (Visual Basic, SQL) and experience with CAD and equipment control software (LabVIEW) are desirable. Ability to work with a diverse group, interact with scientific community, schedule and prioritize tasks, and independently handle a broad range of research activities is essential. Weekend and after hours work is to be expected.


  • Masters or B.S. degree in physics, engineering or a related field with several years of relevant experience
  • Demonstrated technical skill, motivation, independence, and creativity necessary to complete difficult tasks

RESEARCH SPECIALIST (minimum requirements)

  • Ph.D. in physics, engineering or a related field with several years of relevant experience

Special Requirements

Please visit and respond to Job ID 2021-1502. Applicants should upload to the appropriate application fields a cover letter, curriculum vitae (CV), two-page statement of research interests and career goals, names of four references (please include in your cover letter or add a new cover letter labeled respectively), and copies of up to three relevant publications.  Information on NOSAMS can be found at:

The review of applications will begin around August 16, 2021

Physical Requirements

Physical duties for this position include but are not limited to ability to lift above the shoulder, shoulder to knee, knee to floor; lifting 25-30 lbs., two to three times per hour, 1-2 times per day. Carrying 10-25 lbs., one to two times per hour, 2-3 times per day; Manual dexterity and mobility, use of hands for basic grasping and fine manipulation, and occasional reaching, bending, stooping, kneeling and crouching. Physical duties are subject to change.

WHOI is an Affirmative Action/Equal Opportunity Employer/Disabled/Veterans/M/F. We encourage Veterans and those with Disabilities to apply. Applications are reviewed confidentially. Applicants that require accommodation in the job application process are encouraged to contact us at (508) 289-2253 or email for assistance.


National Ocean Sciences Accelerator Mass Spectrometry facility (NOSAMS) provides analyses of 14C at natural abundance levels to the ocean sciences research community.

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