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Undergraduate Intern - High Performance Computing

The Physical and Computational Sciences Directorate (PCSD) researchers lead major R&D efforts in experimental and theoretical interfacial chemistry, chemical analysis, high energy physics, interfacial catalysis, multifunctional materials, and integrated high-performance and data-intensive computing.

PCSD is PNNL’s primary steward for research supported by the Department of Energy’s Offices of Basic Energy Sciences, Advanced Scientific Computing Research, and Nuclear Physics, all within the Department of Energy's Office of Science.

Additionally, Directorate staff perform research and development for private industry and other government agencies, such as the Department of Defense and NASA. The Directorate's researchers are members of interdisciplinary teams tackling challenges of national importance that cut across all missions of the Department of Energy.

The High-Performance Computing (HPC) Group at PNNL seeks an Undergraduate Intern researcher with a background and interest in building the next generation of HPC systems.  Our ideal candidate will have a drive to contribute to world-leading research, gain experience and an understanding of working at a DOE national laboratory, and tackle complex multi-disciplinary projects.  We are looking for candidates that could contribute to projects within our ongoing portfolio, covering topics including performance modeling, analysis, and optimization of large-scale scientific workflows; compilers; runtime system software; architecture design and synthesis tools; non-von Neumann computing systems; and distributed scientific computing incorporating edge, cloud, and HPC resources.  The candidate will collaborate closely with laboratory personnel in developing leading research and will engage with computing and domain experts and researchers at collaborating national laboratories, universities, and industry partners.  Specific topics of interest include:

  • Architectural design, design automation, and high-level synthesis tools
  • Performance modeling, analysis, and optimization of scientific workloads on large-scale and distributed systems
  • Compiler frameworks, including LLVM and MLIR
  • System software and runtime systems
  • Programming for scientific workloads, including C++ and CUDA
  • AI and ML frameworks, including Tensorflow and PyTorch
  • Quantum computing algorithms, systems, and simulation

Responsibilities and Accountabilities include:

  • Working with researchers across disciplines to help shape future computing systems with mission impact
  • Participating in and potentially leading technical discussions with collaborators
  • Presentation of research results in peer-reviewed conferences and workshops
  • Contributing to and developing papers to be submitted to peer-reviewed venues

Minimum Qualifications:

  • Candidates must have a high school diploma /GED or higher
  • Candidates must be degree-seeking undergraduate students enrolled at an accredited college or university
  • Candidates must be taking at least 6 credit hours and have an overall cumulative GPA of 2.5

Hazardous Working Conditions/Environment
Not applicable

Additional Information
Not applicable

Testing Designated Position
This is not a Testing Designated Position (TDP)

About PNNL
Pacific Northwest National Laboratory (PNNL) is a world-class research institution powered by a highly educated, diverse workforce committed to the values of Integrity, Creativity, Collaboration, Impact, and Courage. Every year, scores of dynamic, driven people come to PNNL to work with renowned researchers on meaningful science, innovations and outcomes for the U.S. Department of Energy and other sponsors; here is your chance to be one of them!

At PNNL, you will find an exciting research environment and excellent benefits including health insurance, flexible work schedules and telework options. PNNL is located in eastern Washington State—the dry side of Washington known for its stellar outdoor recreation and affordable cost of living. The Lab’s campus is only a 45-minute flight (or ~3 hour drive) from Seattle or Portland, and is serviced by the convenient PSC airport, connected to 8 major hubs.

Commitment to Excellence, Diversity, Equity, Inclusion, and Equal Employment Opportunity
Our laboratory is committed to a diverse and inclusive work environment dedicated to solving critical challenges in fundamental sciences, national security, and energy resiliency. We are proud to be an Equal Employment Opportunity and Affirmative Action employer. In support of this commitment, we encourage people of all racial/ethnic identities, women, veterans, and individuals with disabilities to apply for employment.

Pacific Northwest National Laboratory considers all applicants for employment without regard to race, religion, color, sex (including pregnancy, sexual orientation, and gender identity), national origin, age, disability, genetic information (including family medical history), protected veteran status, and any other status or characteristic protected by federal, state, and/or local laws.

We are committed to providing reasonable accommodations for individuals with disabilities and disabled veterans in our job application procedures and in employment. If you need assistance or an accommodation due to a disability, contact us at

Drug Free Workplace
PNNL is committed to a drug-free workplace supported by Workplace Substance Abuse Program (WSAP) and complies with federal laws prohibiting the possession and use of illegal drugs.

HSPD-12 PIV Credential Requirement
In accordance with Homeland Security Presidential Directive 12 (HSPD-12) and Department of Energy (DOE) Order 473.1A, new employees are required to obtain and maintain a HSPD-12 Personal Identity Verification (PIV) Credential.  To obtain this credential, new employees must successfully complete and pass a Federal Tier 1 background check investigation.  This investigation includes a declaration of illegal drug activities, including use, supply, possession, or manufacture within the last year.  This includes marijuana and cannabis derivatives, which are still considered illegal under federal law, regardless of state laws.

Mandatory Requirements
Please be aware that the Department of Energy (DOE) prohibits DOE employees and contractors from having any affiliation with the foreign government of a country DOE has identified as a “country of risk” without explicit approval by DOE and Battelle. If you are offered a position at PNNL and currently have any affiliation with the government of one of these countries, you will be required to disclose this information and recuse yourself of that affiliation or receive approval from DOE and Battelle prior to your first day of employment.

Rockstar Rewards
Regular Hourly:

Employees are offered an employee assistance program and business travel insurance. Employees are eligible for the company funded pension plan and 401k savings plan, once eligibility requirements are met.

Temporary Hourly:

Employees are offered an employee assistance program and business travel insurance.

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