Research Associate - Electron Cyclotron Resonance (ECR) Ion Source Group

The Facility for Rare Isotope Beams (FRIB) will be a new national user facility for nuclear science, funded by the Department of Energy Office of Science (DOE-SC), Michigan State University (MSU), and the State of Michigan. Under construction on the site of the National Superconducting Cyclotron Laboratory (NSCL) on the MSU campus and to be operated by MSU, FRIB will provide intense beams of rare isotopes (that is, short-lived nuclei not normally found on Earth). FRIB and NSCL will continue to enable scientists to make discoveries about the properties of these rare isotopes in order to better understand the physics of nuclei, nuclear astrophysics, fundamental interactions, and applications for society.

Rare-isotope beams are produced and separated in-flight, presently at the NSCL Coupled Cyclotron Facility and in the future at FRIB, and subsequently thermalized and reaccelerated to energies up to 6 MeV/u, by the ReAccelerator facility ReA3, a worldwide unique, state-of-the-art accelerator for rare- isotope beams. An upgrade to higher energies (ReA6) is presently under construction. When FRIB comes online, it will supplant the Coupled Cyclotron Facility and provide the highest possible intensity rare isotope beams as input to the ReA facility.

This position affords an exciting opportunity to become part of the world-class FRIB Project, and to get in on the ground floor of an emerging national user facility that will expand nuclear science into a whole new realm of possibility.

Position Overview

The Facility for Rare Isotope Beams (FRIB) invites applications for a research associate, post-doctoral position within the Electron Cyclotron Resonance (ECR) Ion Source Group of the Accelerator Operations Department. The candidate will support the FRIB operations department in delivering ion beams from a 14 GHz ECR ion source for injection into the superconducting linac during commissioning of the FRIB accelerator and lead the commissioning effort of the new 28 GHz superconducting ECR ion source.

Major Position Responsibilities

  • Perform EM design superconducting dipole and quadrupole magnet system using NbTi and Nb3Sn conductors for fragment separator area and instrumentation beam line optics.
  • Design Quench protection scheme and analysis to ensure the safety of the magnet operation.
  • Participate in the mechanical design of the superconducting magnets
  • Develop technical specifications for superconducting magnet system and subcomponents for procurement and provide technical supervision of the procurement if needed which includes review vendor test results, non-conformance report and witness vendor factory tests.
  • Serve as subject matter experts of superconducting magnets and provide technical guidance and support for coil winding and superconducting magnet construction
  • Participate commissioning and mapping the magnet systems
  • Support superconducting magnet operation including training operation staff, develop operation procedures, trouble shooting and resolve technical issues.
  • Ensure system compliance with Environment, Safety and Health (ES&H) and QA requirements
  • Interact with Michigan State University (MSU) and other external engineering authorities on matters pertaining to the practice of engineering for FRIB
  • Establish and manage engineering standards and procedures, support the design review process, the value engineering program

Required Qualifications

  • Doctorate-Atomic, Plasma or Accelerator Physics
  • Ability to work with export controlled technology
  • Experience with ECR ion sources
  • Experience with vacuum systems
  • Experience with mechanical design and ion beam optics


MSU employees receive excellent benefits including health/dental plans, a generous retirement plan, and educational assistance.

How to Apply

For immediate consideration, please go search for posting number 568514 and follow the application process.

Required Application Materials

Interested candidates should submit a cover letter, CV, and arrange for three letters of reference.

MSU is committed to achieving excellence through cultural diversity. The university actively encourages applications and/or nominations of women, persons of color, veterans and person with disabilities.

About FRIB and MSU, and the East Lansing Community

FRIB is currently under construction and baselined at a total project cost of $730M. Upon start of user operation in 2022, FRIB will enable scientists to make discoveries about the properties of rare isotopes in order to better understand the physics of nuclei, nuclear astrophysics, fundamental interactions, and applications of rare isotopes to benefit society.

MSU is one of the largest university campuses in the U.S. with a beautiful campus of 5,000 tree-filled acres. It has 17 degree-granting colleges and is a center for academic and research activities as well as the arts and athletics.

The campus sits between Lansing (Michigan’s capital city) and East Lansing. The Lansing area has a population of 350,000 and offers lovely suburban areas, loft condos and other urban living opportunities as well as easy-to-get-to rural areas. A symphony orchestra, excellent health care, many community and professional theatres, rivers, lakes, outdoor festivals, close access to large cities and Lake Michigan make for a near perfect living environment.

MSU is an affirmative action, equal opportunity employer.