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Naval Research Laboratory

The relationship between basic research and technology...

By GECC Editorial Staff

The Navy's Corporate Laboratory

Naval Research Laboratory (NRL) conducts a broadly-based multidisciplinary program of scientific research and advanced technological development directed toward maritime applications of new and improved materials, techniques, equipment, systems, and ocean, atmospheric, and space sciences and related technologies. To meet this goal, NRL provides: primary in-house research for the physical, engineering, space, and environmental sciences; broadly based exploratory and advanced development programs in response to identified and anticipated Navy needs; broad multidisciplinary support to the Naval Warfare Centers; and space and space systems technology development and support.

In 1992, the Secretary of the Navy consolidated existing Navy Research, Development, Test and Evaluation Engineering facilities and Fleet Support facilities to form a corporate community. This community consists of a single corporate research laboratory (NRL), aligned with the Office of Naval Research (ONR), and four warfare-oriented centers aligned by mission with the Systems Commands. The four centers are the Naval Air Warfare Center, the Naval Command Control and Ocean Surveillance Center, the Naval Surface Warfare Center, and the Naval Undersea Warfare Center.

As part of the consolidation, the Naval Oceanographic and Atmospheric Research Laboratory, with locations in Stennis Space Center, Mississippi, and Monterey, Calif., merged with NRL to become what is today, the Navy's corporate laboratory.

Working at NRL

Located in the southwest quadrant of the bustling nation's capital, the Naval Research Laboratory quietly carries out research on the forefront of the physical and chemical sciences, computer science and engineering. The breadth and quality of the scientific work performed at NRL, coupled with a stimulating and challenging environment, make the Laboratory an interesting and unique place to be employed.

The benefits to choosing a career at NRL extend beyond scientific exploration and professional growth. NRL offers a flexible and responsive personnel system. A skill-based pay schedule was implemented in September, 1999, which has allowed the Laboratory to be competitive in its hiring practices and helped to retain a high quality workforce. Using this pay system, NRL employees have the potential to earn more money than working under job-based systems. NRL also offers excellent health benefit options, the Thrift Savings Plan retirement system, paid annual and sick leave, plus 10 paid Federal holidays, and a comprehensive compensation package.

On-site amenities include an intra-Lab shuttle bus service, a recreation club with a pool and exercise facilities (for nominal membership fee), and a Federal Credit Union, which offers a full range of financial services to its members.

Career Opportunities

NRL is a world-class research institution that is always looking to recruit talented individuals in many fields of science. The Laboratory has an un-paralleled collection of state-of-the-art research facilities.

At NRL, employees interact with some of the finest minds in the world. They have the chance to apply their talents in a creative, hands-on environment, with opportunities for educational and career development. Employees can learn at the hands of accomplished scientists and travel to prestigious scientific conferences and workshops.

For more information on career opportunities with the NRL, you can contact the Job Vacancy Hotline at (202) 767-3030, or log onto NRL's Human Resources Office (HRO) Web site at

Educational Prospects

The Laboratory encourages broadened knowledge in all scientific disciplines. Successful candidates at the graduate and post-doctorate levels can expand career goals by participating in research activities; interacting with scientists from NRL, other laboratories and academia; participating in scientific conferences and seminars; and publishing research results.

The General Laboratory Scientific Interchange Programs (GLSIP) promotes working relationships between scientists and engineers, primarily post-doctorates, and faculty members. Participating organizations include the National Research Council, the American Society for Engineering Education, the U.S. Naval Academy and the Department of Defense.

NRL also has Student Programs, which include cooperative programs, summer employment opportunities, temporary jobs, and DoD's Science and Engineering Apprenticeship Programs.

All information courtesy of Naval Research Laboratory’s Web site at


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