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Postdoctoral Fellowship

Job Description

Lawrence Berkeley National Labís (LBNL) Molecular Foundry Division has an opening for a Biological Nanosensing Devices Postdoc to join the team.

The postdoctoral position at Berkeley Lab's Molecular Foundry Nanofabrication Facility offers an exciting opportunity to work on the development of biological nanosensing devices. As the first planned postdoctoral hire, you will have the chance to help build a research group focused on fabricating and characterizing digital microfluidic (DMF) devices and nanofluidic integrated circuits (NFICs). The key objective is to leverage nanostructured inorganic materials to directly measure the optical and electrical properties of single biomolecules, enabling the direct spectroscopic analysis of biological organisms and macromolecules. This cutting-edge research aims to break new ground in understanding the quantum mechanical nature of biological systems and how living organisms utilize resonant phenomena. You will collaborate with interdisciplinary teams, perform fabrication processes, conduct electrical and optical characterization, and contribute to data analysis and publication of research findings.

What You Will Do:

  • Patterning and etching nanochannel features onto wafer (e.g., silicon or quartz) and suspended thin film (e.g., SiN) membrane substrates.

  • Patterning and depositing nano-structured metal electrodes proximal to etched nanochannels.

  • Exploring semi-metal atomic layer deposited (ALD) electrode materials as electrodes proximal to etched nanochannels, as well as uniform thin film ground plane electrodes.

  • Patterning and depositing micro-structured metal electrodes with atomic layer deposition (ALD) conformally coated pin-hole defect-free dielectric films.

  • Wafer and suspended thin film bonding to assemble devices registered from channels and electrodes patterned onto separate wafer surfaces.

  • Conducting electrical and optical metrology, characterization, and measurement for fabricated devices.

  • Performing data analysis and statistical evaluation of device characteristics.

  • Authoring and publishing manuscripts and conference proceedings.

Additional Responsibilities as needed:

  • Preparation of biological samples and molecular analytes.

  • Ordering supplies and materials.

  • Possible direction of undergraduate and graduate researchers.

What is Required:

  • Ph.D. in physics, chemistry, materials science and engineering, or another discipline relevant to nanofabrication, nanotechnology, and nanoscience, or equivalent work experience in any of or a combination of these disciplines.

  • Experience in fabrication and cleanroom techniques, including nanolithography, photolithography, plasma etching, and physical deposition, sputtering.

  • Proficiency in fabricating at least one of the various types of micro- or nano-fluidic device types, such as laminar flow, electrowetting, electrophoretic devices, etc.

  • Excellent oral and written communication skills with the ability to collaborate effectively across multiple research groups and disciplines.

  • Strong understanding of and commitment to safety protocols within a laboratory setting.

Desired Qualifications:

  • Experience with trenched etching in inorganic wafer processing.

  • Familiarity with atomic layer deposition.

  • Experience with electrical impedance spectroscopy and lock-in amplifier measurements.

  • Experience with optical spectroscopy.

  • Ability to interact with a diverse range of scientists from different backgrounds and nationalities.

  • Excellent interpersonal skills and a demonstrated leadership in safety culture.

Want to learn more about Berkeley Lab's Culture, Benefits and answers to FAQs? Please visit:


  • This is a full-time 2 years, postdoctoral appointment with the possibility of renewal based upon satisfactory job performance, continuing availability of funds and ongoing operational needs. You must have less than 3 years of paid postdoctoral experience. Salary for Postdoctoral positions depends on years of experience post-degree.

  • This position is represented by a union for collective bargaining purposes.

  • The monthly salary range for this position is $5.000.00 - $5,996.00. Postdoctoral positions are paid on a step schedule per union contract and salaries will be predetermined based on postdoctoral step rates. Each step represents one full year of completed post-Ph.D. postdoctoral and/or related research experience.

  • This position may be subject to a background check. Any convictions will be evaluated to determine if they directly relate to the responsibilities and requirements of the position. Having a conviction history will not automatically disqualify an applicant from being considered for employment.

  • Work will be primarily performed at Lawrence Berkeley National Lab, 1 Cyclotron Road, Berkeley, CA.

Berkeley Lab is committed to Inclusion, Diversity, Equity and Accountability (IDEA) and strives to continue building community with these shared values and commitments. Berkeley Lab is an Equal Opportunity and Affirmative Action Employer. We heartily welcome applications from women, minorities, veterans, and all who would contribute to the Lab's mission of leading scientific discovery, inclusion, and professionalism. In support of our diverse global community, all qualified applicants will be considered for employment without regard to race, color, religion, sex, sexual orientation, gender identity, national origin, disability, age, or protected veteran status.

Equal Opportunity and IDEA Information Links:

Know your rights, click here for the supplement: Equal Employment Opportunity is the Law and the Pay Transparency Nondiscrimination Provision under 41 CFR 60-1.4.††

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