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Principal Scientist at OXY

Principal Scientist

OXY Avon Lake, OH Full Time
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Contribute. Grow. Lead… with OxyChem. Looking for a challenge? Desire to achieve your true potential? OxyChem is a growing, action-oriented, safety driven chemical manufacturing company continually striving to be the best in the business while staying focused on environmental protection. The secret to our success has and will continue to be our people.

Occidental Chemical Corporation (OxyChem) is a leading North American manufacturer of chlorine and caustic soda, and polyvinyl chloride (PVC) resins – key building blocks for a variety of indispensable products such as plastics, pharmaceuticals and water treatment chemicals. Other OxyChem products include caustic potash, chlorinated organics, sodium silicates, chlorinated isocyanurates and calcium chloride. For every product it makes, OxyChem’s market position is No. 1 or No. 2 in the U.S.

In a fast-paced industry that demands precision, we create a supportive workplace where the safety and well-being of our employees are paramount. We are committed to rewarding top performers, offering very competitive pay and benefits, and providing tremendous career development opportunities. We are looking for an experienced and self-motivated leader to fill the position of Principal Scientist within our Technology organization.  The position will reside at our Technical Center in Avon Lake, Ohio, and support our PVC business.

Essential Job Duties:

This position is responsible for contributing to innovative R&D activities in support of OxyVinyls’ Business objectives.

  • Maintain, as our highest priority, the protection of the environment, the health and safety of our employees, customers, and the communities in which we operate and/or transport our products.
  • Understand and work in accordance with all site safety and environmental procedures including the site Chemical Hygiene Plan.  Adhere to the use of personal protective equipment as required.
  • Perform advanced research projects to develop new products, improve existing products, reduce manufacturing costs, improve safety, improve quality, and reduce environmental impact.
  • Conduct laboratory experiments and perform chemical, physical, and mechanical property measurements on PVC raw materials, resins, polymers, copolymers, and compounds.
  • Create experimental recipes for the pilot plant and determine the quality of experiments by evaluating laboratory test results common to the PVC industry.
  • Work on Manufacturing Authorizations, evaluating raw materials, processes, and product changes.
  • Provide technical support to manufacturing facilities and customers.
  • Understand raw material selection choices and work with vendors to understand new products and technologies.
  • Record experimental data in a laboratory notebook and LIMS.
  • Report results in the form of formalized technical reports, PowerPoint presentations, spreadsheets, charts, and graphs.
  • Determine lab equipment and instrumentation needed for routine and non-routine lab work.
  • Use statistics to evaluate data and identify trends, providing a highly technical basis for conclusions, and reporting information to other team members.
  • Work as an individual contributor and on small teams with other technical staff to become proficient in OxyVinys technologies with the intent of becoming an expert.
  • Lead small teams to attain project goals.  Must be capable of supervising technical staff.
  • Champion intellectual property, ensuring that technology is maintained and communicated within the organization.  Keep current of new technologies and evaluate promising opportunities.
  • Ability to travel to manufacturing plants to support product and process improvements, and troubleshooting.
  • Establish open communication with all of the OxyVinyls operating plants to ensure Technology adds value to the organization. 
  • Ensure compliance with regulatory, Safety Data Sheets, product labels, and Responsible Care to promote the safe handling and use of chemicals.
  • Bachelor's degree or higher in Chemistry, Chemical Engineering, or other relevant technical discipline is required with at least 10 years of chemical industry experience.

  • A minimum of 5 years of experience in the development or support of PVC manufacturing or processing technology or a closely related field.

  • Must have knowledge of fundamental chemical principles, laboratory practices, and laboratory safety.

  • High degree of problem solving and organizational skills.

  • Excellent written and verbal communication skills.

  • Self-motivated with the ability to work efficiently with minimal supervision.

  • Must be able to lead teams.

  • Proficient in Microsoft Office software and statistical analysis.

  • Physical requirements – Must be able to lift 40 pounds, climb ladders and stairs. Walking, bending, stooping is required. Must be able to wear personal protective equipment as required. Must be able to respond to visual and audible alarms.

Additional Desired Qualifications:

  • An advanced degree in Chemistry or Chemical Engineering.

  • PVC resin development expertise with over 25 years of experience in PVC.

  • Expertise in suspension PVC resin manufacturing and at least one other discipline.  

  • Formalized statistics training.

  • Supervisory or management experience and the ability to coach less experienced team members in all areas of expertise.

  • Comfortable presenting information to all levels of the organization.

Occidental is an Equal Opportunity/Affirmative Action Employer.  All qualified applicants will receive consideration for employment without regard to race, color, religion, sex, age, marital status, political preference, sexual orientation, gender identity, national origin, protected veteran status, or disability status.

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