1. Home
  2. Careers
  3. Jobs at bp
  4. Senior Scientist - Fermentation

Senior Scientist - Fermentation

Senior Scientist - Fermentation

  • Location United States of America - California - San Diego
  • Travel required Up to 25% travel should be expected with this role
  • Job category Research & Technology Group
  • Relocation available Relocation may be negotiable for this role
  • Job type Professionals
  • Job code RQ081774
  • Experience level Intermediate
Apply Search all jobs at bp

Job summary

Job Family Group:

Research & Technology Group

Job Description:

At bp, we’re reimagining energy for people and our planet. We want to help the world reach net zero and improve people’s lives. Technology innovation will play a vital role in shaping the scale-up and commercialization of the net zero building blocks – and bp is investing in focused research and development (R&D) to generate future competitive advantage. 

In bp, in-house science and R&D is conducted by the Technology organization with Applied Sciences (AS) focused on the physical and biological world. The AS teams have the remit to differentiate the present and innovate the future, we help to maintain the competitiveness of our established businesses, such as Castrol and Fuels, while also creating the technology foundations for our transition growth businesses including biofuels, renewables, hydrogen and electrification.

We are currently looking to deepen our focus in a number of key areas and plan to establish a number of dedicated innovation squads covering identified growth areas.

Job description

This is an opportunity to join us in creating, growing, and delivering innovation to reimagine energy for people and our planet.

The advanced bio & physical sciences for low carbon energy team is the central research organisation for biosciences, chemistry, materials sciences, fundamental biofuels pathways, green hydrogen/ electrochemistry, and the science of carbon capture. This team also incorporates computational modelling of biosciences and chemistry.  The Biosciences Center (BSC) works to identify current opportunities and assess future opportunities across the range of bp’s businesses, supporting bp’s ambition to reach net zero by 2050 or sooner.  The Center stays closely connected to bp businesses and external technologies, and ensures the expertise required to progress opportunities through the early stages of technology development. 

The Center also advises businesses on biological issues and partnership opportunities.  The team is comprised of flexible, agile, multi-skilled, innovative members that work collaboratively across the research portfolio. 

The Senior Scientist - Fermentation will lead strategies for larger scale testing of biogas production.  The successful candidate will support the execution of experiments to improve biogas production from a wide slate of feedstocks in anaerobic digestion. The individual will join a group of interactive scientists and should have strong communication skills and outstanding inter-disciplinary problem solving and critical thinking skills, with a strong interest in the pursuit of scientific discovery.  This position requires hands-on work at the bench with a recent experience of delivering experimental results. 

Key accountabilities

  • Serve as subject matter expert for large-scale anaerobic digestion
  • Support experimental efforts related to biogas production via anaerobic digestion including experimental design.
  • Apply process and biological insights to find opportunities for improvement in performance of anaerobic digestion processes including options for scale-up.
  • Interpret data and data quality and ability to communicate to cross functional scientific audiences.
  • Support HSSE requirements for operation and maintaining a biosafety level 2 (BSL2) facility.
  • Attention to detail and trouble-shooting skills. 
  • Ability to work in a face-paced, multi-disciplinary environment, both independently and within a project team. 
  • Promote safety initiatives and champion compliance with bp’s Code of Conduct.

Essential criteria and qualifications:

  • Education: Masters/PhD degree (3+ years) from the following fields: bioengineering, chemical engineering, biochemistry, enzymology, molecular biology, biology, synthetic biology, chemistry or related fields (or bachelors 5+ years of relevant experience). Experience must be validated by a track record of publications.  
  • Experience working in and maintaining a BSL2 facility.
  • Research and lab-based experience in anaerobic digestion or similar fermentation processes involving microbial consortia. 

 Desirable criteria

  • Understanding of microbiology and experience with various organisms common in anaerobic digestion microbial consortia. Knowledge of impacts of feedstock, nutrient, and chemical and biological additives on variability of yield and biogas quality. 
  • In-depth knowledge of anaerobic digestion, including understanding of bio-reactor design and operations, process monitoring and control, and analytical techniques. 
  • Outstanding inter-disciplinary problem solving and critical thinking skills, with a passion for scientific innovation and low carbon technology. Excellent written and verbal communication skills, including the ability to interact effectively with technical and non-technical collaborators.
  • Experience and ability to work effectively in a multi-tasking, fast pace, and matrix environment, with skills on prioritizing, delivery and being flexible in response to change.
  • Effective decision making with the ability to provide expert advice and clear recommendations, and to propose insights and develop solutions to sophisticated problems.
  • Experience of handling third party relationships, including academic collaborators.  


  • Travel – up to 25%. Travel between the various locations (in the UK, US, Europe, India, and China) may be required. Must be willing to work in other locations for extended periods of time.

Why join us

At bp, we support our people to learn and grow in a diverse and exciting environment. We believe that our team is strengthened by diversity. We are committed to fostering an inclusive environment in which everyone is respected and treated fairly.

There are many aspects of our employees’ lives that are important, so we offer benefits to enable your work to fit with your life. These benefits can include flexible working options, a generous paid parental leave policy, and excellent retirement benefits, among others!

How much do we pay ? 121- 173K. *Note that the base pay range listed for this position is a good faith and reasonable estimate of the range of possible base compensation at the time of posting.
We offer a reward and wellbeing package to enable your work to fit with your life. These can include, but are not limited to, access to health, vision and dental insurance, flexible working schedule, paid time off policy, discretionary annual bonus program, long-term incentive program, and a generous 401K matching program.  You may learn more about our generous benefits at benefits@bp.

We will ensure that individuals with disabilities are provided reasonable accommodation to participate in the job application or interview process, to perform essential job functions, and to receive other benefits and privileges of employment. Please contact us to request accommodation.

Travel Requirement:

Up to 25% travel should be expected with this role

Relocation Assistance:

Relocation may be negotiable for this role

Remote Type:

This position is a hybrid of office/remote working


Anaerobic Digestion, Biogas, Fermentation processes, Fermentations, Fermentation Systems

Legal Disclaimer:

We are an equal opportunity employer and value diversity at our company.  We do not discriminate on the basis of race, religion, color, national origin, sex, gender, gender expression, sexual orientation, age, marital status, socioeconomic status, neurodiversity/neurocognitive functioning, veteran status or disability status. Individuals with disabilities may request a reasonable accommodation related to bp’s recruiting process (e.g., accessing the job application, completing required assessments, participating in telephone screenings or interviews, etc.).  If you would like to request an accommodation related to the recruitment process, please contact us to request accommodations.

If you are selected for a position and depending upon your role, your employment may be contingent upon adherence to local policy.  This may include pre-placement drug screening, medical review of physical fitness for the role, and background checks.

Apply Search all jobs at bp