Organisation STFC
Organisation Detail Science and Technology Facilities Council
Reference Number IRC253918
Location Didcot See on Map
Salary £24777 - £26932
Date Posted 21 May 2020
Contract Type Open Ended
Hours Full Time
Closing Date 12 June 2020
Interview Date

Brief Description

Salary: £24,777
Grade: UKRI-C
Contract Type: Open-Ended
Hours: Full Time
Closing Date: 12th June 2020
Interview Date: 7th July 2020


An applied physicist is required to contribute to the development of scintillation detectors at the ISIS Neutron and Muon Source.

The ISIS Neutron and Muon Source is a world-leading centre for research in the physical and life sciences at the STFC Rutherford Appleton Laboratory near Oxford in the United Kingdom. Our suite of thirty-seven instruments gives unique insights into the properties of materials on the atomic and molecular scale. At the heart of each of these instruments is a dedicated detector system which is tailored to meet the diverse range of instrument requirements. We support a national and international community of more than 3000 scientists for research into subjects ranging from clean energy and the environment, pharmaceuticals and health care, through to nanotechnology and materials engineering.

Research, design, development, production, installation, commissioning and maintenance of the ISIS detector systems is organised and carried out by the ISIS Neutron Detector Group.  Due to the rapid increase in both the scale and the variety of detector requirements, this Group is now seeking an applied physicist to contribute to the development of neutron scintillation detectors for neutron scattering applications.


You will build on the success obtained to date with micro-particle ZnS:Ag and ZnO:Zn based scintillator detectors and will be responsible for the development of novel nano-particle scintillators. This research program will work in parallel to the continuing development of current scintillator detector technology.

Specific tasks will include the following:

  • Liaise with the ISIS detector group members, material scientists, instrument scientists, design engineers, electronics engineers and experimental operations team members to determine detector specifications and constraints
  • Develop and characterise physical, electronic and optical properties of nano-crystalline scintillators
  • Evaluate the performance of critical detector components including, scintillators, light collection mechanisms and photomultiplier tubes
  • Contribute to the development of appropriate signal processing methods to optimise detector performance
  • Determine the performance of scintillators using multiple sources of ionising radiation
  • Evaluate neutron detector efficiency, gamma sensitivity, rate capability and position resolution
  • Construct experiments and analyse experimental data
  • Model radiation interaction in scintillators and other detector materials
  • Present results to members of the detector group, instrument scientists and engineers and at conferences and workshops
  • Fully embrace the STFC safety culture in all aspects of work
  • Work with ionising radiation in carrying out detector and detector component evaluation
  • Work outside normal working hours when required in order to make effective use of ISIS.

Contacts and Communication

  • Your immediate line manager will be the detector Group’s scintillation detector specialist.

Organization Description

UK Research and Innovation is a new entity that brings together nine partners to create an independent organisation with a strong voice for research and innovation, and a vision to ensure the UK maintains its world-leading position in research and innovation. More information can be found at

The Science and Technology Facilities Council is a world-leading multi-disciplinary science organisation, and our goal is to deliver economic, societal, scientific and international benefits to the UK and its people – and more broadly to the world.

Shortlisting Criteria & Interview Criteria



  • M.Sc. Degree in Physics with at least a 2:1 or equivalent.


  • Knowledge of neutron sensitive scintillation detectors
  • Knowledge of luminescent nanomaterials.


  • Tenacity and determination to pursue experimental development programmes and enjoy problem solving
  • Ability to work as part of a multidisciplinary team
  • Good oral and written communication skills.


  • Experience in designing and/or evaluating the performance of small-scale prototype equipment for research and development programmes
  • Experience in the development of neutron sensitive scintillation detectors
  • Experience in processing small, fast signals
  • Experience in computing for data analysis, writing reports and presentation of results.

Special requirements

  • A willingness to work with ionising radiation
  • A willingness to work outside normal working hours to maximise detector development beam time.



  • Knowledge of electronics for radiation detectors.    


  • Ability to prioritise workload, pursue several tasks concurrently and switch emphasis as the situation demands
  • Ability to drive own Research and Development programme.


  • Ability to write software for data analysis and/or to simulate performance of detector and detector electronics
  • Experience in developing equipment to defined timescales.

UKRI supports research in areas that include animal health, agriculture and food security, and bioscience for health which includes research on animals, genetic modification and stem cell research. Whilst you may not have direct involvement in this type of research, you should consider whether this conflicts with your personal values or beliefs.

To enable us to hire the very best people we will conduct a full and comprehensive pre-employment check as an essential part of the recruitment process on all individuals that are offered a position with UKRI. This will include a security check and an extreme organisations affiliation check.

Employee Benefits

UK Research and Innovation recognises and values employees as individuals and aims to provide a pay and reward package that motivates staff to the best of their ability. The reward and benefit package includes a flexible working scheme, an excellent Defined Benefit pension scheme, 30 days annual leave allowance and a number of other benefits.

Developing Talent

We are committed to developing employees in their roles throughout their career. Learning and development plans enable employees to continue their professional development through training and development opportunities such as e-learning, classroom training and on-the-job experiences. We encourage our employees to share their learning across teams and organisations.

Equal Opportunities

We strive to make decisions based on individual merit and ability. We welcome applications from all sections of the community and promote equality of opportunity in accordance with the Equality Act 2010. As holders of Disability Confident Employer status, we guarantee to interview all applicants with disabilities who meet the minimum criteria for the vacancy.

As this job does not fulfil the Home Office Code of Practice criterion for obtaining sponsored migrant worker status we will be unable to apply for sponsorship for anyone not eligible to work in the UK. At interview, all shortlisted candidates are required to bring with them identification documents and original documents that prove they hold or can obtain the right to work in the UK. You can check your eligibility here:

Online applications only. Please submit a covering letter and CV ensuring that the IRC reference is included in the filename description of each document uploaded. Please note that failure to address the above criteria or submitted without a covering letter may result in your application not being considered.

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