Reactor Systems Engineer (Neutronics)

Duties

 

As a Reactor Systems Engineer (Neutronics) at the full performance level of this position, you will conduct and coordinate with other engineers specialized research in the area of neutronics analysis. You will use and develop neutronics analysis and thermal-hydraulic codes to support resolution of relevant safety and technical issues of Agency interest. You will also coordinate, plan, develop, and provide technical direction of relevant safety research programs. Duties include but are not limited to:

1. Performs routine studies of neutronic and thermal-hydraulic system behavior using advanced multiphysics computational codes (e.g., SCALE) and maintains state-of-the-art knowledge and expertise in the area of neutronics code development and assessment, and experiments used to develop and/or validate computer codes.

2. Maintains and assists other engineers in the development of the state-of-practice NRC neutronics codes such as SCALE and associated specialized routines such as Polaris and ORIGEN.

3. Performs neutronics modeling with SCALE and thermal-hydraulic modeling in support of Agency research needs as well as urgent licensing needs of user offices.

4. Provides technical direction to contractors involved in various nuclear analysis, and coordinates support to users of these programs.

5. Prepares presentations at technical and programmatic review meetings. Attends and participates in technical conferences and seminars sponsored by the NRC and/or professional societies for the purpose of addressing regulatory issues, as requested.

Requirements

Conditions of Employment

  • This is a Drug Testing position.
  • U.S. Citizenship Required
  • Background investigation leading to a clearance is required for new hires.

 

You must meet the qualifications for this position by no later than 30 calendar days after the closing date of this announcement and before placement in the position.

 

Qualifications

In order to qualify for this position, you must have at least one year of specialized experience at the next lower grade level in the Federal service or equivalent experience in the private or public sector.

For the GG-11 Level:

To qualify at the GG-11 grade level, you must have at least one year of specialized experience equivalent to the GG-09 grade level which is defined as experience that demonstrates the knowledge of computer languages and codes (e.g., Fortran, MATLAB, and/or neutronics codes) and knowledge of one or more of the following areas of reactor and nuclear power plant systems design and analysis: neutronics or reactor physics.

OR

3 years of progressively higher-level graduate education leading to a Ph.D. degree OR a Ph.D. OR equivalent doctoral degree.

For the GG-12 Level:

To qualify at the GG-12 grade level, you must have at least one year of specialized experience equivalent to the GG-11 grade level which is defined as experience that demonstrates the knowledge of computer languages and codes (e.g., Fortran, MATLAB, and/or neutronics codes) and technical experience in one or more of the following areas of reactor and nuclear power plant systems design and analysis: neutronics or reactor physics. 

For the GG-13 Level:

To qualify at the GG-13 grade level, you must have at least one year of specialized experience equivalent to the GG-12 grade level which is defined as experience that demonstrates the knowledge of computer languages and codes (e.g., Fortran, MATLAB, and/or neutronics codes) and technical experience in one or more of the following areas of reactor and nuclear power plant systems design and analysis: neutronics or reactor physics to analyze and resolve technical and safety issues.

The ideal candidate will be able to demonstrate the following:

1. Demonstrated knowledge of engineering principles and mathematical methods for reactor analysis, particularly relating to neutronics behavior. Examples may include experience with neutronics response under steady-state, transient and accident conditions and issues related to operating and advanced reactors, high burnup and extended enrichment (HBU/EE) fuel, accident tolerant fuel (ATF), and non-light water reactors.

2. Demonstrated experience in development and assessment of neutronics codes for nuclear reactors designsExamples may include experience developing and performing safety analysis using neutronics codes (e.g., SCALE, PARCS) and to evaluate the accuracy and reliability of the results under normal and postulated off-normal conditions, design basis accident conditions (e.g., LOCA), and severe accident conditions to support the safety assessment of nuclear power plants.

3. Demonstrated ability to independently coordinate, plan, develop, and provide technical oversight and direction of analytical and experimental research programs or projects. Examples may include experience in reviewing, coordinating, and managing the activities of an analytical and experimental research program within schedule and resource limitations, in evaluating varied proposals and approaches to meet a program or project’s challenges, and recommending and implementing changes for improving the effectiveness and efficiency of a program or project.

4. Demonstrated ability to effectively communicate technical information both orally and in writing. Examples may include specific experience and accomplishments that demonstrate your ability to effectively communicate technical information both orally and in writing.  Examples may also include leading complex technical discussions, consolidating complex and diverse opinions, data, or analysis results into concise, balanced, and well-founded recommendations and producing high quality technical reports to diverse stakeholders.

A description of how you possess the specialized experience as well as how you meet the qualifications desired in an ideal candidate should be addressed in your resume and additional space provided for supplemental response.

Education

 

You must include an unofficial or official copy of your college and/or university transcripts with your application.  Education must be from an accredited (or pre-accredited) college or university recognized by the U.S. Department of Education. If you are qualifying based on foreign education, you must submit proof of credibility of education as evaluated by a credentialing agency.

Qualification for All Professional Engineering 0800 Series:

Basic Requirements:

  1. Degree: Engineering. To be acceptable, the program must: (1) lead to a bachelor’s degree in a school of engineering with at least one program accredited by ABET; or (2) include differential and integral calculus and courses (more advanced than first-year physics and chemistry) in five of the following seven areas of engineering science or physics: (a) statics, dynamics; (b) strength of materials (stress-strain relationships); (c) fluid mechanics, hydraulics; (d) thermodynamics; (e) electrical fields and circuits; (f) nature and properties of materials (relating particle and aggregate structure to properties); and (g) any other comparable area of fundamental engineering science or physics, such as optics, heat transfer, soil mechanics, or electronics.

OR

  1. Combination of education and experience -- college-level education, training, and/or technical experience that furnished (1) a thorough knowledge of the physical and mathematical sciences underlying engineering, and (2) a good understanding, both theoretical and practical, of the engineering sciences and techniques and their applications to one of the branches of engineering. The adequacy of such background must be demonstrated by one of the following:
  2. Professional registration or licensure -- Current registration as an Engineer Intern (EI), Engineer in Training (EIT)1, or licensure as a Professional Engineer (PE) by any State, the District of Columbia, Guam, or Puerto Rico. Absent other means of qualifying under this standard, those applicants who achieved such registration by means other than written test (e.g., State grandfather or eminence provisions) are eligible only for positions that are within or closely related to the specialty field of their registration. For example, an applicant who attains registration through a State Board's eminence provision as a manufacturing engineer typically would be rated eligible only for manufacturing engineering positions.
  3. Written Test -- Evidence of having successfully passed the Fundamentals of Engineering (FE)2 examination or any other written test required for professional registration by an engineering licensure board in the various States, the District of Columbia, Guam, and Puerto Rico.
  4. Specified academic courses -- Successful completion of at least 60 semester hours of courses in the physical, mathematical, and engineering sciences and that included the courses specified in the basic requirements under paragraph A. The courses must be fully acceptable toward meeting the requirements of an engineering program as described in paragraph A.
  5. Related curriculum -- Successful completion of a curriculum leading to a bachelor's degree in an appropriate scientific field, e.g., engineering technology, physics, chemistry, architecture, computer science, mathematics, hydrology, or geology, may be accepted in lieu of a bachelor’s degree in engineering, provided the applicant has had at least 1 year of professional engineering experience acquired under professional engineering supervision and guidance. Ordinarily there should be either an established plan of intensive training to develop professional engineering competence, or several years of prior professional engineering-type experience, e.g., in interdisciplinary positions. (The above examples of related curricula are not all-inclusive.)

More detailed information about these alternatives are described in the U.S. Office of Personnel Management Qualification Standards Operating Manual which may be accessed at the following website: https://www.opm.gov/policy-dataoversight/classification-qualifications/general-schedule-qualification-standards/0800/general-engineering-series-0801/

Required Documents

 

List of supplemental material that may be applicable:

If you are a current/reinstatement eligible Federal employee with status (Tenure Group 1 or 2), you will be considered under our merit promotion procedures and must submit a copy of your most recent SF-50 (Notification of Personnel Action) to verify competitive status or reinstatement eligibility.  

Veterans' Preference documentation, if applicable (e.g. DD-214 Member Copy 4 showing type of discharge/character of service; Current Active Duty members must submit a certification of expected discharge or release from active duty under honorable conditions dated within 120 days; SF-15 Form and related documentation; VA letter.)  You can find additional information about Veterans' Preference at http://www.fedshirevets.gov/.

You must include an unofficial or official copy of your college and/or university transcripts with your application.  Education must be from an accredited (or pre-accredited) college or university recognized by the U.S. Department of Education. If you are qualifying based on foreign education, you must submit proof of credibility of education as evaluated by a credentialing agency.

All supplemental documents will now be collected electronically and should be submitted BEFORE the closing date of this vacancy announcement.  File uploads are limited to 5MB in size per document. If your file size exceeds 5MB it will not upload.  You can reduce the file size by using the reduce file size feature in Adobe Acrobat before uploadYou have three choices for submitting your supplemental documents:

1.  Use the "USAJOBS" feature to download documents from your USAJOBS portfolio; or
2.  Use the "Upload" feature to upload documents directly from your computer.  The following types of documents can be uploaded:  .gif, .jpeg, .png, .rtf, .pdf, and .doc; or
3.  Use the "Fax" feature to print the Fax Cover Sheet and fax it, along with your supplemental documents to 1-571-258-4052.

 

If you are relying on your education to meet qualification requirements:

Education must be accredited by an accrediting institution recognized by the U.S. Department of Education in order for it to be credited towards qualifications. Therefore, provide only the attendance and/or degrees from schools accredited by accrediting institutions recognized by the U.S. Department of Education.

Failure to provide all of the required information as stated in this vacancy announcement may result in an ineligible rating or may affect the overall rating.

Equal employment opportunity policy

The United States Government does not discriminate in employment on the basis of race, color, religion, sex (including pregnancy and gender identity), national origin, political affiliation, sexual orientation, marital status, disability, genetic information, age, membership in an employee organization, retaliation, parental status, military service, or other non-merit factor.

Reasonable accommodation policy

Federal agencies must provide reasonable accommodation to applicants with disabilities where appropriate. Applicants requiring reasonable accommodation for any part of the application process should follow the instructions in the job opportunity announcement. For any part of the remaining hiring process, applicants should contact the hiring agency directly. Determinations on requests for reasonable accommodation will be made on a case-by-case basis.