Los Alamos National Laboratory XCP-8 Group Leader (R&D Manager 4) in Los Alamos, New Mexico

What You Will Do

The X-Computational Physics Division (XCP) is looking for an outstanding scientific leader to serve as the Group Leader for XCP-8, the Verification & Analysis Group. XCP-8 provides expertise in verification, validation, and uncertainty quantification as applied to scientific simulations. XCP-8 is charged to challenge and assess the accuracy, credibility, robustness, and performance of nuclear weapons physics and weapons science simulation codes with the goal of improving the predictive capabilities of these codes. XCP-8 also develops and applies computational physics capabilities across a wide variety of national security program areas, including weapons effects, nuclear nonproliferation, and nuclear forensics.

XCP-8 has an annual budget of about $11M, and employs about 20 full-time Scientists, plus Postdocs, Students, and Guest Scientists. The group emphasizes a hierarchical approach to validation involving a spectrum of experimental data ranging from underground nuclear tests to small-scale laboratory experiments. Verification focuses on exploring the numerical behavior of the codes and their underlying algorithms. Uncertainty quantification includes assessment of sensitivities and uncertainties of models as implemented in the codes as well as variability and bias in experimental data.

XCP-8 works in close partnership with teams from multi-physics simulation codes, methods & algorithms, physics & material data, experimental programs, and weapons design to ensure that activities are technically relevant, scientifically grounded, and achieve maximum impact on programmatic goals. The group supports the national goals of NNSA Defense Programs in predictive capability assessment and integrated computational and experimental science.

What You Need

Minimum Job Requirements:

  • Demonstrated broad technical knowledge in one or more application areas relevant to XCP-8, as documented by publications, reports, presentations, computer code, or other evidence of completed work.

  • A background in successful program or project development, leadership, and/or execution in either a formal or informal role.

  • Demonstrated experience staffing programs or projects while building technical capabilities within a team.

  • Strong interpersonal skills to build collaborative relationships with other stakeholders in experimental, theoretical, and computational physics; develop research careers of staff; mentor postdocs; and create a positive work environment.

  • Active Q clearance or ability to obtain a Q clearance (which normally requires US citizenship).

Desired Skills:

  • Demonstrated understanding of verification, validation, and uncertainty quantification, as applied to LANL stockpile stewardship and global security programs.

  • Citations, honors, and/or participation in national committees in one or more application areas relevant to XCP-8.

  • Demonstrated knowledge of multi-physics codes, including their strengths, weaknesses, and long-term needs.

  • Experience and/or knowledge of experimental physics.

  • Line management experience including staff recruiting, career development, and constructive feedback.

  • Demonstrated effective leadership to include strategic thinking, creativity and innovation, decisiveness, integrity, and institutional perspective.

  • Active Q clearance strongly preferred.


  • PhD in science or engineering in a specialization relevant to XCP-8 is strongly preferred. A minimum of a BS in science or engineering is required.

Notes to applicants:

  • Applicants must submit a CV/resume and a comprehensive cover letter that addresses how they meet the minimum job requirements, and any of the desired skills of the position.

Additional Details:

Clearance: Q (Position will be cleared to this level). Applicants selected will be subject to a Federal background investigation and must meet eligibility requirements* for access to classified matter.

*Eligibility requirements: To obtain a clearance, an individual must be at least 18 years of age; U.S. citizenship is required except in very limited circumstances. See DOE Order 472.2 for additional information.

New-Employment Drug Test: The Laboratory requires successful applicants to complete a new-employment drug test and maintains a substance abuse policy that includes random drug testing.

Regular Position:Term status Laboratory employees applying for regular-status positions are converted to regular status.

Equal Opportunity:Los Alamos National Laboratory is an equal opportunity employer and supports a diverse and inclusive workforce. All employment practices are based on qualification and merit, without regards to race, color, national origin, ancestry, religion, age, sex, gender identity, sexual orientation or preference, marital status or spousal affiliation, physical or mental disability, medical conditions, pregnancy, status as a protected veteran, genetic information, or citizenship within the limits imposed by federal laws and regulations. The Laboratory is also committed to making our workplace accessible to individuals with disabilities and will provide reasonable accommodations, upon request, for individuals to participate in the application and hiring process. To request such an accommodation, please send an email to applyhelp@lanl.gov or call 1-505-665-4444 option 1.

Where You Will Work

Our diverse workforce enjoys a collegial work environment focused on creative problem solving, where everyone’s opinions and ideas are valued. We are committed to work-life balance, as well as both personal and professional growth. We consider our creative and dedicated scientific professionals to be our greatest assets, and we take pride in cultivating their talents, supporting their efforts, and enabling their successes. We provide mentoring to help new staff build a solid technical and professional foundation, and to smoothly integrate into the culture of LANL.

Compensation and benefits

  • Competitive salaries

  • Multiple options for work schedule

  • Exercise facility free for staff use

  • Choice of comprehensive medical plans

  • Paid sick time and disability insurance

  • 401k (100% match up to 6% + kicker)

  • Fully vested in 401k on day one

Los Alamos, New Mexico enjoys excellent weather, clean air, and outstanding public schools. This is a safe, low-crime, family-oriented community with frequent concerts and events as well as quick travel to many top ski resorts, scenic hiking & biking trails, and mountain climbing. The short drive to work includes stunning views of rugged canyons and mesas as well as the Sangre de Cristo Mountains. Many employees also live in the nearby state capital, Santa Fe, which is known for world-class restaurants, art galleries, and opera.

Maximum Salary: 219800

Minimum Salary: 126700

Location: Los Alamos, NM, US

Contact Name: Budge, Trevor L.

Organization Name: XCP-8/Verification & Analysis

Email: tbudge@lanl.gov

Job Title: XCP-8 Group Leader (R&D; Manager 4)

Appointment Type: Regular

Req ID: IRC60222