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Research Scientist - Decatur, IL



Decatur, IL, USA
Posted on Tuesday, June 25, 2024

Research Scientist - Decatur, IL


IL - Illinois

Research & Development

Job Description

Research Scientist, Thermochemical Catalysis - Decatur, IL
This is an exempt level position

Position Summary
The Catalysis Research Group at ADM has an opening for a Research Scientist in thermochemical catalysis. The ideal candidate will have a proven track record of advancing technology from bench scale catalyst discovery through lab scale flow reactor development and on to piloting and commercialization. A strong understanding of the chemistry, material science, and chemical engineering principles that enable successful commercial-scale catalytic processes is critical. The candidate’s participation at ADM as both a technical contributor and project leader on multi-disciplinary teams will advance ADM’s overall strategy in support of existing catalyst-enabled businesses and in several exciting growth opportunities. The colleague will serve as a role model and student of new ideas to continuously improve laboratory safety culture. The role includes technical project leadership expectations through development of clear project objectives, business case scenarios, and resource loaded timelines to meet milestones on time and budget. The position of Research Scientist, Thermochemical Catalysis reports to the Catalysis Research Group Manager.

  • Demonstrate leadership and serve as a role model in safe laboratory practices and behaviors
  • Function as a leader and/or individual technical contributor within cross-functional teams of chemists, engineers, technicians, and business-facing colleagues
  • Provide project technical leadership by developing clear objectives, experimental plans, and timelines to accomplish project goals on schedule and on budget
  • Synthesize, test, and characterize catalyst samples as needed
  • Generate, interpret, and analyze data using statistically rigorous analysis techniques.
  • Commission and review techno-economic analyses of chemical processes from the ADM Modelling Center to determine potential profitability and direct personnel and project resources to address the greatest identified technical risks
  • Report on the status of research activities through verbal updates, written reports, and presentations to internal technical colleagues and business unit leaders
  • Develop and manage relationships with external vendors and technical collaborators as required by projects
  • Prepare invention disclosures to protect patentable discoveries and valuable intellectual property and know-how that advances project technologies
  • Monitor and share within ADM key external technologies including relevant intellectual property disclosures and scientific publications
  • Manage individual professional and project-related technical development including continuous advancement of knowledge, skill, and capabilities in the catalysis field
  • A degree in chemistry or chemical engineering or other relevant field with 3-10 years experience post-academia (degree or postdoctoral appointments) in catalyst discovery and catalytic process development
  • A strong commitment to safety as the primary consideration for all work
  • Experience leading projects by providing technical direction to colleagues, and assignment of technical resources is desired
  • The ability to lead and execute project management plans with a diverse team of technicians, chemists, engineers, and analysts
  • Strong and effective written and interpersonal communication skills and capabilities
  • Hands-on experience in batch and flow catalytic reactor set-up, operation, and maintenance/repair
  • Knowledge and experience with a wide range of analytical instrumentation including HPLC, GC, GC-MS, LC-MS, FT-IR, NMR, UV-Vis spectroscopy, physisorption, chemisorption, XRD, SEM, TEM, XAS, and other catalyst characterization methods
  • Knowledge and experience in catalyst preparation and characterization methods
  • Knowledge and experience in handling of hazardous materials and operations found in a laboratory or pilot scale chemical facility
  • Working knowledge of Microsoft Office products (e.g., Word, Excel, PowerPoint, Outlook, SharePoint, Teams) and the ability to learn and operate other computer software and automation tools, inclusive of Electronic Lab Notebook (ELN) software.
  • Minimal (less than 10%) travel required.
Excited about this role but don’t meet every requirement listed? Studies show that often applicants will self-select out if they don’t check every box. We encourage you to apply anyway. You may be just the right candidate for this role or another one of our openings.

ADM requires the successful completion of a background check.


Benefits and Perks

Enriching the quality of life for the world begins by taking care of our colleagues. In addition to competitive pay, we support your diverse needs with a comprehensive total rewards package to enhance your well-being, including:

  • Physical wellness – medical/Rx, dental, vision and on-site wellness center access or gym reimbursement (as applicable).
  • Financial wellness – flexible spending accounts, health savings account, 401(k) with matching contributions and cash balance plan, discounted employee stock purchasing program, life insurance, disability, workers’ compensation, legal assistance, identity theft protection.
  • Mental and social wellness – Employee Assistance Program (EAP), Employee Resource Groups (ERGs) and Colleague Giving Programs (ADM Cares).
Additional benefits include:
  • Paid time off including paid holidays.
  • Adoption assistance and paid maternity and parental leave.
  • Tuition assistance.
  • Company-sponsored training and development resources, such as LinkedIn Learning, language training and mentoring programs.
*Benefits may vary for bargained locations, confirm benefit eligibility with your recruiter.


Diversity, equity, inclusion and belonging are cornerstones of ADM’s efforts to continue innovating, driving growth, and delivering outstanding performance. We are committed to attracting and retaining a diverse workforce and create welcoming, truly inclusive work environments — environments that enable every ADM colleague to feel comfortable on the job, make meaningful contributions to our success, and grow their career. We respect and value the unique backgrounds and experiences that each person can bring to ADM because we know that diversity of perspectives makes us better, together.

We are committed to ensuring all qualified applicants receive consideration for employment regardless of race, color, ethnicity, disability, religion, national origin, gender, gender identity, gender expression, marital status, sexual orientation, age, protected veteran status, or any other characteristic protected by law.

We welcome everyone to apply, especially those individuals who are underrepresented in our industry, as we strive to ensure our workforce represents the world that we help to feed: people of color, women, gender non-conforming, LGBTQIA+, veterans and persons with disabilities. For more information regarding our efforts to advance Diversity, Equity, Inclusion & Belonging, please visit our website here: Diversity, Equity and Inclusion | ADM.

About ADM

At ADM, we unlock the power of nature to provide access to nutrition worldwide. With industry-advancing innovations, a complete portfolio of ingredients and solutions to meet any taste, and a commitment to sustainability, we give customers an edge in solving the nutritional challenges of today and tomorrow. We’re a global leader in human and animal nutrition and the world’s premier agricultural origination and processing company. Our breadth, depth, insights, facilities and logistical expertise give us unparalleled capabilities to meet needs for food, beverages, health and wellness, and more. From the seed of the idea to the outcome of the solution, we enrich the quality of life the world over. Learn more at www.adm.com.

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