Robert B Saethre

Senior R&D staff member, Asset Management and Engineering Program Manager

Robert provides the expertise and leadership to drive continual improvement of NScD asset management and  conduct of engineering. He oversees engineering-related activities across the Research Accelerator Division (RAD), Neutron Technologies Division (NTD) and Neutron Scattering Division (NSD), coordinating with the engineering Subject Matter Experts (SMEs) across the directorate. In this position, he serves as the highest level of design authority for these organizations and as an integrating force to improve the consistency, efficiency, reliability, and effectiveness of engineering-related programs, processes, and resources. He defines the protocols and standards governing all aspects of engineering for the directorate.


He is an active member of the IEEE Dielectrics and Insulation Society (DEIS), the IEEE Nuclear Plasma Sciences Society (NPSS), holding positions in the Pulsed Power Conference (PPC) and International Power Modulator Conference (IPMHVC).  He is currently the Local Organizing Committee Chair 2024 International Particle Accelerator Conference (IPC’24) which is being held May 19-24, 2024 in Nashville, TN.  This volunteer role encompasses all aspects of planning, coordinating and hosting a technical conference including contract negotiations, social event organization, event team building, and budgeting.


He has been with ORNL since 2010 working as Sr. Engineer and Team Lead for the SNS Magnets, Power Supplies, Kickers, and Choppers Team until June of 2019 when he took over the Group Leader position of the Research Accelerator Division's Electrical Systems Group, then moving to Project Director of the Asset Management initiative before assuming his current role.


Robert is an senior engineering manager with over 30 years of progressive experience in management, design, product development, and operations of accelerator and electrical power conversion systems for industry and governmental institutions. He joined ORNL in 2011 after an extensive career in industry with expertise in fiber optics design and pulsed power systems for laser systems.