Analytical Geochemist

Department: Core Research Laboratories
Contract Type: Permanent
Pay Band: SC2 Developer
Salary: 29,154 - 30,553 (depending on experience) per annum plus benefits
Location: South Kensington
Hours: 41 hours per week including paid lunch break
Application Close Date: 9am on Monday 12 December 2016
Interviews expected: Week commencing 3 January 2016

Role Summary

The Natural History Museum is one of the world's leading museums, internationally recognised for its dual role as a centre of excellence in scientific research and as a leader in the presentation of natural history through exhibitions, public programmes, publications and the web.

Forming one division within the museum's Core Research Laboratories, the Imaging & Analysis Centre is a central resource for the museum's science group, contributing to the science strategy as well as public engagement.

The Imaging & Analysis Centre provides first-class imaging and analytical facilities, including LA-ICP-MS, ICP-MS, ICP-AES, Organic elemental analysis (CHNS), Analytical SEM, Electron Microprobe, VP SEM, 2x Field emission analytical SEM, 2x Micro CT systems, an industry-funded ore deposits analysis laboratory, IR spectroscopy, and XRD instruments for sample characterization.

The Museum seeks to recruit an experienced geochemical analyst to join a team of scientists in the Imaging & Analysis Centre. This is an analytical post with the requirement to work across a number of applications, including LA-ICP-MS, analytical SEM, electron microprobe and other chemical/geochemical techniques. There may also be an opportunity to develop other techniques (e.g. XRF) if capital funding is successful in the future.

As well as supporting the museum's research and curation programmes the post holder will be expected to engage in collaborative and/or independent research and seek funds to support this research, preferably in synergy with the existing research groups and directly relevant to the museum's science strategy.

Role competencies (requirements)

Applicants must demonstrate evidence of the detailed competence outlined below to be considered for the post. Please address each competence in the 'Other Information' section in the online form.

Academic Qualifications

BSc in Earth Sciences, Physical or Natural Sciences or extensive experience working in an analytical geochemistry environment.
Desirable: Masters or PhD in Earth Sciences or related discipline, or equivalent experience

Role competencies


  • Experience in the use of LA-ICP-MS for the analysis of inorganic, preferably geological materials
  • Experience in data reduction, processing and interpretation of LA-ICP-MS analyses
  • First line maintenance and troubleshooting LA-ICP-MS instruments
  • Use and application of Analytical SEM and EDX and interpretation of associated data


  • Experience in the use of Electron Microprobe and WDX analysis of minerals
  • Preparation of mineral separates and light microscopy identification for mineralogy and petrology descriptions.
  • Experience with writing and publishing scientific results in internationally recognized peer-reviewed journals.
  • Ability to work as part of a team with strong networking skills

Main tasks and responsibilities (job description)

  • Develop some of the analytical laboratories with a special emphasis on mineralogical and elemental characterization, applying LA-ICP-MS in the first instance, and other techniques as required
  • Contribute to the scientific development and technical applications in the Imaging & Analysis Centre, and be responsible for some areas of data output and analysis
  • Provide specialised technical application, support and supervision for a wide range of stakeholders, including museum staff, postgraduate students and external users in the development of projects and preparation of reports.
  • Interpret results, train new users and carry out first line maintenance on equipment and ensure workplace health and safety protocols are adhered to.
  • Publish scientific papers in internationally recognised peer-reviewed journals

Diversity and disability

At the Natural History Museum we value the diversity of our staff and volunteers and the benefits they bring to our organisation. We welcome applications from candidates with disabilities.

Health and Safety

All employees are required to understand and comply with the Museum Health and Safety Management Policy, including taking reasonable care for their own health and safety and that of others who may be affected by their acts or omissions whilst at work.

Application method

Apply on-line before the closing date through the NHM website:

  • Complete the on-line application form. In the 'Other Information' section, please provide specific examples from your achievements, knowledge, skills or experience to demonstrate how you meet each of the role competences (section 3) for the role. You must complete this section.
  • Please use one field per competence and a maximum of 140 words per field
  • Tell us what attracted you to the role.
  • Tell us about anything else you believe is relevant to your application.

Please note:

  • 'Other Information section' the system runs on a 35 minute cycle and you will lose any unsaved information that you have not saved.
  • Please also be aware that anything entered onto the form will not save unless text has been added to all mandatory fields.
  • You must fully complete your on-line application and we discourage the use of CVs.
  • Partially completed applications with CVs attached will be rejected.
  • Individual cover letters and CVs submitted outside of the on-line application system will not be considered.

If you wish to provide additional information other than a CV to support your application you may upload this on to your on-line application. A maximum of 2 documents may be uploaded. Each document should not exceed 1Mb.

You are advised to prepare your examples and evidence in a word document before transferring them to the on-line application form.

Selection and appointment

Selection decisions are based on merit with candidates assessed against clear, objective competence at each stage of the recruitment and selection process. All offers of employment made are conditional and subject to satisfactory completion of all pre-employment checks.

Salary Information

Salary for the successful candidate will be 29,154 - 30,553 per annum plus benefits.

For a list of museum employee benefits please visit Different rules for pay on promotion may apply to internal candidates. Please refer to the Pay Chapter of the Staff Handbook or contact HR for advice

Contact for general enquiries

HR general enquiries:

posted: 22 November 2016     Please mention EARTHWORKS when responding to this advertisement.