18 days old

Postdoctoral Appointee - Power Systems Protection R&D Engineer

Albuquerque, NM 87102

Bidder Eligibility:

This postdoctoral position is a temporary position for up to one year, which may be renewed at Sandia's discretion up to five additional years. The PhD must have been conferred within five years prior to employment. Individuals in postdoctoral positions may bid on regular Sandia positions as internal candidates, and in some cases may be converted to regular career positions during their term if warranted by ongoing operational needs, continuing availability of funds, and satisfactory job performance.

Employees must remain in their current position for one year before applying for a new position, with the exception of student interns. Application of this requirement will not supersede collective bargaining agreements. See collective bargaining labor agreements for represented bidder eligibility requirements for represented employees.

Posting Duration:

This posting will be open for application submissions for a minimum of seven (7) calendar days, including the ‘posting date’. Sandia reserves the right to extend the posting date at any time.

COVID-19 Vaccination Mandate:

Sandia demonstrates its commitment to public safety in the national interest by requiring that all new hires be fully vaccinated or have an approved medical or religious accommodation before commencing employment. The requirement also applies to those who are telecommuting and working virtually.

Any concerns about the ability to meet this requirement should be directed to HR Solutions at (505) 284-4700.

What Your Job Will Be Like:

We are seeking a dedicated and motivated Electrical Engineer in Power System Research with a strong background in power systems protection to join a multi-disciplinary and hard-working team and work as a Postdoctoral Appointee. The selected candidate will focus on making technical contributions to ongoing and creative new research projects by modeling protection system behavior in bulk transmission, distribution systems, or micro-grids.

The work will include short-circuit analysis and protection analysis including setting relays and performing coordination studies, analyzing protection relay behavior during power swings and other transient disturbances, coordination of and interaction between generator and grid protection devices, and studying the impacts of inverters and decreasing inertia on protection performance.

On any given day, you may be called on to:

+ Design protection schemes for the electric power grid with high penetrations of inverter-based generation

+ Perform complex engineering/scientific analysis in the area of system protection

+ Demonstrate technical knowledge with a focus on adaptive protection, short circuit calculations and relay coordination

+ Demonstrate creativity and ingenuity in providing software solutions and analytical solutions

+ Work with colleagues and external collaborators to develop innovative solutions to emerging challenges facing the power industry

+ Publish research outcomes in peer-reviewed journals, conferences, etc.

+ Present research findings to sponsors and externally to professional communities, e.g., IEEE, CIGRE, industry workshops, etc.

Qualifications We Require:

+ PhD in Electrical Engineering or related field

+ Expertise in grid protection, protection relays and their applications, settings, and testing

+ Technical knowledge in power system simulation, analysis, dynamics or control

+ Ability to obtain and maintain a DOE L-level security clearance

Qualifications We Desire:

+ Strong interpersonal communication including verbal and written communication skills as evidenced through a proven publication record

+ Proven programming ability and analytical skills, including proficiency with MATLAB, R, or Python

+ Experience with commercial protection software packages such as CAPE and ASPEN to perform relay coordination

+ Modeling power systems for planning using CYMDIST, Synergi, PSSE, DiGSILENT PowerFactory, WindMil, or OpenDSS

+ Experience with electromagnetic transient modeling of protective relays in software like PSCAD or ATP-EMTP

+ Understanding of protection functions and programmable logic used in modern numerical Schweitzer, GE, ABB, Siemens relays

+ Experience with real-time digital simulators (like Opal-RT or RTDS)

+ Self-motivated and able to work independently with minimal direction and ability to perform in a team environment

About Our Team:

The Electric Power Systems Research Department is focused on novel R&D to enable the modernization of the nation's electric power grid. This work includes power system dynamics; grid stability; power system planning and operations; power system protection; threat modeling; grid resilience metrics and modeling; power systems controls and optimization techniques, and artificial intelligence and data analytics applied to the electric grid. The department is highly inter-disciplinary working closely with many departments across Sandia, while simultaneously working collaboratively with universities, utilities, government agencies, and other national research organizations.

About Sandia:

Sandia National Laboratories is the nation’s premier science and engineering lab for national security and technology innovation, with teams of specialists focused on cutting-edge work in a broad array of areas. Some of the main reasons we love our jobs:

+ Challenging work with amazing impact that contributes to security, peace, and freedom worldwide

+ Extraordinary co-workers

+ Some of the best tools, equipment, and research facilities in the world

+ Career advancement and enrichment opportunities

+ Flexible work arrangements for many positions include 9/80 (work 80 hours every two weeks, with every other Friday off) and 4/10 (work 4 ten-hour days each week) compressed workweeks, part-time work, and telecommuting (a mix of onsite work and working from home)

+ Generous vacations, strong medical and other benefits, competitive 401k, learning opportunities, relocation assistance and amenities aimed at creating a solid work/life balance*

World-changing technologies. Life-changing careers. Learn more about Sandia at: http://www.sandia.gov*These benefits vary by job classification.

Security Clearance:

Sandia is required by DOE to conduct a pre-employment drug test and background review that includes checks of personal references, credit, law enforcement records, and employment/education verifications. Applicants for employment need to be able to obtain and maintain a DOE L-level security clearance, which requires U.S. citizenship. If you hold more than one citizenship (i.e., of the U.S. and another country), your ability to obtain a security clearance may be impacted.

Applicants offered employment with Sandia are subject to a federal background investigation to meet the requirements for access to classified information or matter if the duties of the position require a DOE security clearance. Substance abuse or illegal drug use, falsification of information, criminal activity, serious misconduct or other indicators of untrustworthiness can cause a clearance to be denied or terminated by the DOE, resulting in the inability to perform the duties assigned and subsequent termination of employment.


All qualified applicants will receive consideration for employment without regard to race, color, religion, sex, sexual orientation, gender identity, national origin, age, disability, or veteran status and any other protected class under state or federal law.

Job ID: 682898



  • Engineering
Posted: 2022-04-28 Expires: 2022-05-28

 World-changing technologies. Life-changing careers.

National security is our business. We apply science to help detect, repel, defeat, or mitigate threats.

For more than 60 years, Sandia has delivered essential science and technology to resolve the nation's most challenging security issues.

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Postdoctoral Appointee - Power Systems Protection R&D Engineer

Sandia National Laboratories
Albuquerque, NM 87102

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