This position is part of the Defense Threat Reduction Agency. The incumbent will be responsible for serving as a Scientific Advisor to the assigned Technical Support Group (TSG) Chief in the Contingency Operations Department (NECO) and provides scientific and technical expertise to DoD, National Security Staff, and other USG D/As senior officials to prevent, protect from, respond to, and recover from radiological/nuclear (R/N) threats or incidents.
As a Physical Scientist / Nuclear Engineer at the GS-0840/1301-13 some of your typical work assignments may include:
We are seeking a candidate with a preferred strong academic background in nuclear science or nuclear engineering, such as might be attained via a Ph.D. degree program, and past experience in radiological/nuclear (R/N) detection. The candidate should be able to analyze R/N threats and related detection problems in order to provide operational, scientific and policy solutions to the Contingency and Exercises Department and supported units. The candidate's background in R/N detection development and detection theory should accompany the ability to effectively communicate and instruct both technical and non-technical audiences, from the individual to the senior official level, in conducting effective R/N search operations. The prospective candidate should have experience in the interpretation of both detection and spectroscopic R/N data, and the operational recommendations that would accompany data analysis and interpretation. The focus of this position is not research, but instead is the training, advising and assisting of tactical units while deployed into a wide variety of environments.
Participate as a member of the Technical Support Group (TSG) to deploy in support of Combatant Commander and other federal D/As in R/N emergency response events and training.
Provide expert scientific, technical, policy advice, opinions and recommendations.
Serve as focal point by providing support and input into program planning, management, review, and oversight of specific Research and Development programs related to radiological/nuclear matters.
Develop authoritative analysis and reports.
Conduct formal presentations and briefings within DTRA, other DoD components and agencies, federal D/A's, and allied partners on R/N response capabilities, technical challenges, program, and policies.
Provide input to the planning and conducting of major studies of extreme difficulty involving key DTRA and DoD national defense and other U.S. D/As/R/N programs, national security policies, and regulatory requirements, to include relevant Host-Nation (HN) and international requirements, to provide findings and technical solutions.
Occasional travel - You may be expected to travel for this position up to 25% of the time.
Job family (Series)
0840 Nuclear Engineering
1301 General Physical Science
Engineers, Nuclear Radiation
Nuclear Radiation Engineers
Conditions of Employment
Must be a U.S. citizen
Males born after 12-31-59 must be registered for Selective Service
Resume and supporting documents (See How To Apply)
Suitable for Federal employment, determined by a background investigation / Subject to pre-employment drug testing and periodic random drug testing thereafter / Must obtain/maintain Top Secret with Sensitive Compartmented Information
May be required to successfully complete a probationary period
Occasionally during exercise and real-world crisis. / Position is designated "key" which requires the incumbent, or designated alternate, to be screened for readiness and recall status
Tour of Duty:
Flexible / Subject to rotational assignments
Fair Labor Standards Act (FLSA):
This position is telework eligible
This position authorizes the incumbent to carry a firearm. Any person who has been convicted of a misdemeanor crime of domestic violence cannot lawfully possess a firearm or ammunition
Candidates who have been convicted of a misdemeanor crime of domestic violence are not qualified for this position, and will be required to certify whether they have ever been convicted of such an offense
False or fraudulent information provided by candidates is criminally punishable by fine or imprisonment (Title 18, U.S.C., Section 1001) (Title 18, U.S.C., Section 922 (g) (91)
This position is Emergency-Essential (E-E).In the event of a crisis situation, the incumbent, or designated alternate, must continue to perform the E-E duties until relieved by the proper authority
May be required to take part in readiness exercises, position cannot be vacated during a national emergency or mobilization without seriously impairing the capability of the organization to function effectively
Must pass a pre-employment and annual deployment physical exam. Must meet the physical and medical requirements for deployment before and throughout employment; May be required to participate in the DoD Immunization Program.
Incumbent must be capable of standing for long periods (8 hours), and be able to wear Personal Protective Equipment (PPE), including body armor and a protective mask; may be exposed to CBRN hazards as well as hostile forces;
Must be capable of lifting/assisting in the lifting of loads up to 50 lb. Must be able to work in harsh conditions. Incumbent will participate in specialized classroom and field training related to the position.
You may qualify at the GS-13, if you fulfill the following qualifications:
A. One year of specialized experience equivalent to the GS-12 grade level in the Federal service:
Utilize field radiological/nuclear (R/N) detection and detectors (with knowledge of their capabilities) during scenarios for WMD response training, exercises, and real world events;
Calculate the effects of radiation shielding and associated doses; Interpret radiological data and spectra;
Utilize experience with nuclear weapons design and associated technology in support of Combatant Command and/or other federal departments/agencies emergency response events;
Participate in radiological/nuclear (R/N) response operations; OR
Experience refers to paid and unpaid experience, including volunteer work done through National Service programs (e.g., Peace Corps, AmeriCorps) and other organizations (e.g., professional; philanthropic; religious; spiritual; community, student, social). Volunteer work helps build critical competencies, knowledge, and skills and can provide valuable training and experience that translates directly to paid employment. You will receive credit for all qualifying experience, including volunteer experience.
In addition to meeting qualifications, your application package must reflect the applicable experience to meet the Individual Occupational Requirements for the 0840/1301 series.
Individual Occupational Requirements (General Physical Science Series, 1301)
physical science, engineering, or mathematics that included 24 semester hours in physical science and/or related engineering science such as mechanics, dynamics, properties of materials, and electronics.
B. Combination of education and experience - education equivalent to one of the majors shown in A above that included at least 24 semester hours in physical science and/or related engineering science, plus appropriate experience or additional education.
Individual Occupational Requirements (Nuclear Engineering Series, 0840)
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.
B. 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:
1. 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.
2. 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.
3. 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.
4. 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.
- NOTE: Failure to provide transcripts will result in you being rated ineligible for this position.
This position is Emergency-Essential (E-E). In the event of a crisis situation, the incumbent, or designated alternate, must continue to perform the E-E duties until relieved by proper authority. The incumbent or the designated alternate may be required to take part in readiness exercises. The position cannot be vacated during a national emergency or mobilization without seriously impairing the capability of the organization to function effectively; therefore, the position is designated "key" which requires the incumbent, or designated alternate, to be screened from military recall status.
This position authorizes the incumbent to carry a firearm. Any person who has been convicted of a misdemeanor crime of domestic violence cannot lawfully possess a firearm or ammunition (Title 18, U.S.C., Section 922 (g) (91). Candidates who have been convicted of a misdemeanor crime of domestic violence are not qualified for this position. Candidates under consideration will be required to certify whether they have ever been convicted of such an offense. False or fraudulent information provided by candidates is criminally punishable by fine or imprisonment (Title 18, U.S.C. Section 1001).
The incumbent must be able to work under periods of extreme pressure resulting from program demands not entirely within the control of the Department Director.
This position requires pre-employment and annual deployment physical exams, which will be evaluated by DTRA Occupational Health professionals to determine if deployability criteria are met. The incumbent must meet the medical requirements for deployment before and throughout employment.
Subject to rotational assignments in the U.S. and to locations outside the continental U.S.
Compensatory time may be required to accomplish operational needs of the organization.
Ph.D. in Nuclear Physics, Nuclear Chemistry or Nuclear Engineering and experience in R/N detection/analysis sciences is desired.
Substitution of education may not be used in lieu of specialized experience for this grade level.
ARE YOU USING YOUR EDUCATION TO QUALIFY? You MUST provide transcripts or other documentation to support your educational claims. Unless otherwise stated: (1) unofficial transcripts are acceptable at time of application, or (2) If you are serviced by the office filling this position and your transcripts are on file in your official personnel folder, you are not required to submit. However, it is your responsibility to ensure transcripts are on file.
All materials must be submitted by the closing date of the announcement.
One academic year of graduate education is considered to be the number of credits hours that your graduate school has determined to represent one academic year of full-time study. Such study may have been performed on a full-time or part-time basis. If you cannot obtain your graduate school's definition of one year of graduate study, 18 semester hours (or 27 quarter hours) should be considered as satisfying the requirement for one year of full-time graduate study.
If you are using education completed in foreign colleges or universities to meet the qualification requirements, you must show that the education credentials have been evaluated by a private organization that specializes in interpretation of foreign education programs and such education has been deemed equivalent to that gained in an accredited U.S. education program; or full credit has been given for the courses at a U.S. accredited college or university. For further information, visit: Foreign Education
Veterans Employment Opportunity Act (VEOA):
To be eligible for a VEOA appointment under Merit Promotion procedures, the veteran must be a preference eligible or a veteran separated after 3 years or more of continuous active service performed under honorable conditions.
Interagency Career Transition Assistance Programs:
This program applies to employees who have been involuntarily separated from a Federal service position within the competitive service or Federal service employees whose positions have been deemed surplus or no longer needed. To receive selection priority for this position, you must: 1) meet ICTAP eligibility criteria; 2) be rated well-qualified for the position; Well qualified is defined as possessing the type and quality of experience that exceeds the positions minimum qualifications. and 3) submit the appropriate documentation to support your ICTAP eligibility. For more information: https://www.opm.gov/policy-data-oversight/workforce-restructuring/employee-guide-to-career-transition/.
Noncompetitive Appointment Authorities:
For more information on noncompetitive appointment authority eligibility requirements:
Persons with Disabilities - Schedule A
Special Hiring Authority for Veterans
Special Hiring Authority for Certain Military Spouses
Other Special Appointment Authorities
Males born after 12-31-59 must be registered or exempt from Selective Service (see https://www.sss.gov/RegVer/wfRegistration.aspx
The selecting official may choose to conduct interviews, and once the selection is made, you will receive a notification of the decision.
Declining to be interviewed or failure to report for a scheduled interview will be considered as a declination for further consideration for employment against this vacancy.
Selective Service Requirement:
Please visit http://www.sss.gov for more information.
For more information, please visit
Payment for travel and transportation expenses may be authorized. This includes government paid travel transportation, shipment and temporary storage of household goods, and possibly other entitlements based upon the JTR and agency policy. You may be required to sign a transportation agreement. Most civilian permanent change of station travel entitlements are taxable. For additional information on the tax impact, please visit: https://www.dfas.mil/civilianemployees/civrelo/Civilian-Moving-Expenses-Tax-Deduction.html
Selectee or incumbent must be able to obtain the appropriate certification level for their position. This is a Financial Management Level 3 Certified position. IAW Public Law 112-81 and DoD Policy the incumbent shall comply with the requirements of DoD FM Certification program within the allotted timeframe.Only experience and education obtained by the closing date of this announcement will be considered.
This position does not meet criteria for re-employed annuitant. The DoD criteria for hiring Re-employed Annuitants can be found at:
Status candidates must meet time-in-grade requirements (52 weeks at the next lower grade level).
How You Will Be Evaluated
You will be evaluated for this job based on how well you meet the qualifications above.
Once the application process is complete, your resume and supporting documentation will be used to determine whether you meet the job qualifications listed on this announcement. If you are minimally qualified for this job, your resume and supporting documentation will be compared to your responses on the Occupational Questionnaire. If you rate yourself higher than is supported by your application materials, your responses may be adjusted and/or you may be excluded from consideration for this job If you are found to be among the top candidates, you will be referred to the selecting official for employment consideration. Your qualifications will be evaluated on the following competencies (knowledge, skills, abilities and other characteristics):
Countering Weapons of Mass Destruction (CWMD) / Chemical, Biological, Radiological, Nuclear (CBRN)
Planning and Evaluating
Test and Evaluation
Military Spouse Preference:
If you are entitled to military spouse preference, in order to receive this preference you must choose the spousal eligibility in your application package referencing MSP Military Spouse Preference. Your preference entitlement will be verified by the employing agency. To claim Military Spouse Preference (MSP) please complete the Military Spouse PPP Self-Certification Checklist, save the document and attach it to your application package.
Background checks and security clearance
Sensitive Compartmented Information
Drug test required
Position sensitivity and risk
Special-Sensitive (SS)/High Risk
Trust determination process
The documents you are required to submit vary based on the authority you are using to apply (i.e., applying as a veteran, applying as a current permanent Federal employee, applying as a reinstatement, etc). Your complete application includes your COMPLETE resume, your responses to the online questionnaire, and documents which prove your eligibility to apply. If you fail to provide these documents, you will be marked as having an incomplete application package and you will not be considered any further.
The following documents are REQUIRED
1. Your resume:
Your resume may be submitted in any format. It must include your name and contact information and support the specialized experience described in this announcement.
For qualifications determinations your resume must contain the number of hours worked per week and the dates of employment (i.e.," HRS per week and month/year" or "HRS per week and month/year to present").
For additional information see:
What to include in your resume.
This position has a degree or education requirement so you are required to submit a copy of your transcript
College transcript(s), required if qualifying based on education. We accept unofficial transcripts, as long as they contain your name, the name of the school, the date and degree that was awarded, and the lists of classes and credits earned.
3. Veteran's Documents
If applying using veteran's preference or under a Veteran's hiring authority you must submit the following documents:
DD214 showing character of service, SF-15 Form and VA letter showing final percentage, or certification of expected discharge or release from active duty.
PLEASE REVIEW THE BELOW LINK FOR OTHER SUPPORTING DOCUMENTS needed for proof of eligibility:
If you are claiming Military Spouse Preference, you must submit supporting documents with your application package. These documents must provide acceptable information to verify: you reside within the commuting area of your sponsor's permanent duty station (PDS); proof of marriage to the active duty sponsor, proof of military member's active duty status, and other documentation required by the vacancy announcement to which you are applying; and must meet all pre-employment criteria and be eligible for immediate noncompetitive appointment to a position in the competitive service. Documentation required: Marriage Certificate or License, Signed Self-Certification Checklist, Veterans' Preference documentation (e.g., DD-214, VA Letter, Statement of Service, if applicable), Transcripts (if applicable). Additional documentation required if previously held a federal position: SF-50s (e.g., LWOP, highest grade held, overseas appointments, etc.), SF-75 Information, and documentation of performance rating of record (dated within the last 12 months)
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.
A career with the U.S. Government provides employees with a comprehensive benefits package. As a federal employee, you and your family will have access to a range of benefits that are designed to make your federal career very rewarding. Learn more about federal benefits.
Review our benefits
Eligibility for benefits depends on the type of position you hold and whether your position is full-time, part-time, or intermittent. Contact the hiring agency for more information on the specific benefits offered.
This job is open to
Career transition (CTAP, ICTAP, RPL)
Federal employees who meet the definition of a "surplus" or "displaced" employee.
Federal employees - Competitive service
Current or former competitive service federal employees.
Individuals with disabilities
Clarification from the agency
Current Permanent Civilian Federal Employees in the Competitive Service; Displaced employees (Interagency Career Transition Assistance Plan - ICTAP eligible) within the Local Commuting Area; and individuals eligible for the following Special Appointing Authorities: Veterans with a disability rating of 30% or more, Veterans Employment Opportunities Act (VEOA), Military Spouses, and Individuals with Disabilities