Electron Microscopy Scientist

This vacancy is now closed
Job Title Electron Microscopy Scientist
Job Reference DIA1077/CH
Post Type Full time / 4 years fixed term
Division Life Science
Salary information Circa £32k - £ 43k
Application deadline 25/10/2015

Job Description

Diamond is one of the UK's leading research institutions, enabling scientific breakthroughs in many disciplines. Being a part of the Diamond team allows our staff to shape some of the most important and exciting scientific projects being undertaken anywhere in the UK. Diamond is a family friendly employer, with a competitive pension scheme and benefits packages including relocation in accordance with Diamond guidelines. We provide continuous learning for our staff, with training and development opportunities available across the organisation. The Diamond site is located in the beautiful South Oxfordshire countryside on the Harwell Science and Innovation Campus. We share a site with the Rutherford Appleton Laboratory, the Research Complex at Harwell, the pulsed neutron and muon source, ISIS and the European Space Agency, amongst others. This diverse and vibrant campus brings together some of the leading research facilities in the UK on one site with good access to local towns and cities, and excellent schools.

eBIC (electron Bio-Imaging Centre) at Diamond Light Source provides scientists with state-of-the-art experimental equipment and expertise in the field of cryo-electron microscopy, for single particle analysis and cryo-tomography. Funded by the Wellcome Trust with the UK Medical Research and Biotechnology and Biology Research Councils, eBIC provides a cutting edge National Centre for cryo-electron microscopy in the life sciences. Located on the Harwell Science and Innovation Campus in South Oxfordshire and integrated within Diamond Light source the centre provides a unique platform to exploit electron, light and synchrotron imaging capabilities through an integrated approach in the life sciences.

We seek to build an outstanding team with in depth experience of running a 3D cryo EM facility, ideally with a good appreciation of the methods and application of single particle EM, ordered assemblies, tomography and image processing, as well as analysis and interpretation of EM maps. Part of the mission of the centre is to train and outreach nationally and internationally to cell and structural biology communities, cooperation with CCPEM, EMDB and possibly the local X-ray microscopy beam line.


The primary role will be to support the day-to-day operation of the National electron bio-imaging centre’s FEI Scios dualbeam focussed ion beam/ scanning electron microscope currently located in Oxford at the Oxford Particle Imaging Centre (OPIC, http://www.opic.ox.ac.uk) until the construction at the Harwell site has been completed (http://www.diamond.ac.uk/Science/Integrated-facilities/Electron-Microscopy.html). An important part of the role will be the optimisation of workflows enabling targeted lamellae milling of specific cellular areas of frozen hydrated biological specimens for subsequent electron cryo tomography. The post holder will train new users, manage user visits and contribute scientifically to the research and development of projects.

  • Co-ordinate the operation and maintenance of the Scios dualbeam;
  • Optimize the required cryo workflows for experiments including characterisation of resulting specimens by electron cryo tomography;
  • Contribute to training and supervision of research students;
  • Assist in the operation of eBIC for users including carrying out a user support role via the local contact system;
  • Assist in upgrades to eBIC as required;
  • Carry out own research in an area relevant to Electron microscopy.


Qualification & Experience - Essential

  • Appropriate First Degree;
  • Appropriate PhD and relevant experience;
  • Extensive experience in the operation of scanning electron microscopes and focused ion beam instruments;
  • Good dexterity and the ability to use fine, delicate instruments;
  • Good interpersonal, communication and presentational skills and the ability to interact with staff and facility users at all levels;
  • Ability to work flexibly with occasional weekend and out-of hours working both independently and as part of a multi-disciplinary team.

Qualification & Experience - Desirable

  • Experience in supporting scientists in the conduct of research in a large scale scientific facility;
  • Extensive experience in the use of the FIB/SEM instruments for high-resolution structural analysis;
  • Experience in the use of the FIB/SEM to image and prepare biological samples under cryogenic conditions;
  • Experience in pre-characterisation of cellular specimens by fluorescence microscopy;
  • Practical experience with correlative microscopy;
  • Experience in cryoTEM;
  • Basic understanding of soft X-ray cryo microscopy and interest to develop links;
  • Experience in designing bespoke parts using AutoCAD or similar and proven experience in interaction with mechanical workshops;
  • Good organisational and planning skills.

Further Information

Available to travel occasionally in UK and overseas including overnight absences.

Applying for employment

For further details on applying for employment at Diamond, please visit our 'Application Form' page.

Appointments will be made depending on the skills and experience of the candidate. Electronic Diamond application forms in MS-Word are preferred. These should be emailed to recruitment@diamond.ac.uk

Other information