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Seeking Postdoctoral scholar for a join NIST-JHU project on dynamic response of soft materials

vicky.nguyen's picture

The Mechanical Engineering Department at Johns Hopkins University is seeking a postdoctoral fellow to work on a project with the Security Technologies Group in the Material Measurement Laboratory at the National Institute of Standards and Technology (NIST) in Gaithersburg, MD.


This opportunity relates to the development of novel metrologies to study the dynamic response of soft, non-linear materials subjected to impacts of up to 15 m/s and 150 J. Material systems include foams, elastomers, additively-manufactured meta-material structures, and jamming fluids. Relevant applications include protection from blunt impacts that occur during sports, falls, and in the workplace. The candidate must be able to work at NIST in Gaithersburg, MD, which is the primary site of the project.  The project has potential for collaborations at JHU and the University of Chicago. 


The candidate will be expected to conduct experimental research on model and novel impact mitigating materials using both falling mass and mechanically-driven impact instruments;  develop methods to integrate Digital Image Correlation (DIC) strain measurements with compression, shear, and combined compression/shear loading geometries and develop structure-performance relationships relevant for energy dissipation, force redirection, and energy storage. The candidate is also expected to support constitutive model development based on integration of dynamic force data and DIC strain fields. Finite element modeling expertise and an understanding of biomechanics of injury is a plus, but not a requirement. The program is aligned with the Center for Hierarchical Materials Design ( within the Materials Genome Initiative. Successful candidates will have a PhD in engineering and be familiar with non-linear material mechanics, scientific equipment design, and mechanical test equipment. 


Interested candidates should email a cover letter, CV, list of publications and list of references.  

Please send all materials to Professor Vicky Nguyen at AND Dr. Aaron Forster at  Please put in the subject line: JHU-NIST postdoctoral application.  

Consideration of applications will start immediately and will continue until the position is filled.


The Johns Hopkins University is an affirmative action/equal opportunity employer and welcomes applications from women and members of underrepresented groups.




vicky.nguyen's picture

Thank you to all those who applied. The position has been filled.

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