5 Postdoc Positions

These positions are no longer open for applications

Announcement

The ELSA network has announced 5 postdoc positions at different institutes within the network. The host institutes are located in Heidelberg, Torino, Leiden, Ljubljana and Meudon (see the list below).

Although the deadlines for these applications have passed, the announcements are retained on these pages for reference purposes.

The fellows will be appointed for a period of 2 years under employment contracts with the respective ELSA partner (university or similar) hosting the fellowship. The appointments will typically start from the fall of 2007 or later. All fellows are payed competitive salaries corresponding to the Marie Curie RTN grant scheme, including full social benefits.

The network endeavors to ensure a fair representation of men and women among the appointed researchers, and therefore especially encourages female candidates.

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Who can apply?

In order to be eligible for one of the postdoc positions, the candidate must satisfy the following conditions (see flowchart for further information):

Level of experience: The candidate must be an "Experienced Researcher" (ER), i.e. with either a PhD degree or more than 4 years of research or research training since obtaining a degree that gives access to doctoral studies. However, the total research experience must not exceed 10 years.

Nationality: The candidate should normally be a national of an EU Member State or Associated State, or have been resident in such a country for at least 4 out of the last 5 years before the appointment. However, candidates of other nationalities may still be considered subject to constraints imposed by the RTN rules.

Mobility: The candidate should normally be of a different nationality than the host institute, and should not have resided in the country of the host institute for more than 1 out of the last 3 years before the appointment.

Note: The "host institute" of each position is indicated in the list below.

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How to apply

When submitting an application, please respect the following instructions:

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List of postdoc positions with job descriptions

#10: Ring-to-Sphere and other alternative astrometric solution methods for Gaia (Heidelberg, Germany) - closed for applications
#11: Experimental relativity with spaceborn astrometry (Torino, Italy) - closed for applications
#12: Improved attitude modelling for scanning astrometric space missions (Leiden, The Netherlands) - closed for applications
#13: Interpretation of state-of-the-art real stellar spectra in preparation for the Gaia mission (Ljubljana, Slovenia) - closed for applications
#14: Point-Spread Function modelling for pixel-level simulations (Meudon, France) - closed for applications

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Position #10 (postdoc): Ring-to-Sphere and other alternative astrometric solution methods for Gaia (Astronomisches Rechen-Institut ARI/ZAH, Heidelberg University, Heidelberg, Germany)

Description: Postdoctoral research position for work on alternative methods for the astrometric processing of Gaia data. The Ring Solution Method is a direct, non-iterative method to perform a One-Day Astrometric Solution (ODAS) on Gaia data. This solution does not provide the full set of astrometric pararameters (no proper motion, no parallaxes) but provides a very good daily attitude, geometric calibration, and quasi-instantaneous source positions in an ad-hoc "Reference Great Circle" coordinate system. A prototype experiment (collaboration between Heidelberg and Cambridge) has already shown that the resulting data can be combined into a homogeneous (ICRS) coordinate system and that it is possible to solve for proper motions and parallaxes in an iterative process.

The first goal of this project will be to build a software module to perform a global astrometric solution called Ring-to-Sphere (R2S). The results will be compared to the results of the current standard method (AGIS = Astrometric Global Iterative Solution), and the influence of random and systematic errors will be studied. Towards the end of the project it will also be investigated whether some current ideas at the Astronomisches Rechen-Institut could lead to a direct (non-iterative) method to perform a global astrometric solution, either during the time of Gaia or for future missions. Main collaborations will be with Cambridge and Lund.

The starting date for this position is negotiable, but should be between Nov 2007 and May 2008.

Requirements: An interest in mathematical methodology and a motivation to get a complex method implemented - preferably in Java - and analysed.

Address for applications: Dr. Stefan Jordan (jordan@ari.uni-heidelberg.de, with cc to lennart@astro.lu.se). Please indicate in the subject header of the e-mail: "Application for ELSA position #10".

Deadline: There is no specific deadline for applications to this position. The application review process will start on 18 June 2007 and will continue until the position is filled. Thus, applications received after this date may still be considered. Closed for applications.

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Position #11 (postdoc): Experimental relativity with spaceborn astrometry (Osservatorio Astronomico di Torino, INAF, Torino, Italy)

Description: Postdoctoral research position for conducting research in the field of experimental gravitation. Investigations can be on theoretical and/or technological aspects related to very high accuracy astrometric models and practical methods for investigating possible deviations from General Relativity. Possible implications of such deviations to current cosmological models will be considered. Particular emphasis will be on the proper interpretation of the data to be received from ESA's Gaia mission.

A familiarity with General Relativity and knowledge of numerical techniques are definitly a positive, while previous experience with the Gaia project and/or in Java programming is seen as an advantage.

The successful applicant will work with the astrometric group at the Observatory, led by Mario G. Lattanzi, which is strongly involved in the preparations of the Gaia mission. Collaboration with other institutes involved in this line of research is foreseen, with possible extended visits for example to Leiden, Lund and Cambridge.

The starting date for this position is negotiable, but should be no later than October 2007.

Address for applications: Dr. Ronald Drimmel (drimmel@oato.inaf.it, with cc to lennart@astro.lu.se). Please indicate in the subject header of the e-mail: "Application for ELSA position #11".

In addition, a paper-copy of the application material, with a signed cover letter, should be sent to:

Deadline: The deadline for receipt of applications is 31 July 2007. Closed for applications.

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Position #12 (postdoc): Improved attitude modelling for scanning astrometric space missions (Leiden Observatory, Leiden University, Leiden, The Netherlands)

Description: Postdoctoral research position for work on the incorporation of the detailed physical understanding of the dynamics of a continuously rotating space platform into the attitude modelling for space astrometric missions such as Hipparcos and Gaia. The highest quality for the attitude modelling will be needed to reach the astrometric goals of the Gaia mission, as the reconstructed attitude provides the reference frame relative to which the astrometric measurements are obtained. The results of this study will be used in understanding the dynamics of the satellite once it is in operation, and to incorporate, in as far as possible, that understanding in the core astrometric processing for the Gaia mission. The successful applicant will work with Dr. Anthony Brown and Dr. Floor van Leeuwen (Cambridge). The research will be carried out in close collaboration with the groups in Cambridge and Heidelberg (incorporation of results into astrometric processing). Extended stays at these institutes are foreseen.

The appointment will initially be for two years. The starting date is negotiable, but should be no later than September 2007.

Requirements: Previous experience with satellite dynamics, the Gaia mission and/or its astronomical programs is a clear advantage.

Address for applications: Dr. Anthony Brown (brown@strw.leidenuniv.nl, with cc to lennart@astro.lu.se). Please indicate in the subject header of the e-mail: "Application for ELSA position #12".

Deadline: This position is closed for applications.

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Position #13 (postdoc): Interpretation of state-of-the-art real stellar spectra in preparation for the Gaia mission (Faculty of Mathematics and Physics, University of Ljubljana, Ljubljana, Slovenia)

Description: Postdoctoral research position for work on the interpretation of state-of-the-art real stellar spectra in preparation for the Gaia mission. The goal is to gain a better insight into spectroscopic techniques, their calibration and the associated instrumental, algorithmic and computational methods. Special interest will be devoted to recognition and analysis of spectroscopic binary stars and other objects with peculiar spectra. The successful applicant will work with Prof. Tomaz Zwitter. The research will be carried out in collaboration with other ELSA partners. Extended stays at some of these institutes are foreseen.

The astronomy research group in Ljubljana has been strongly involved in preparations of the radial velocity spectrograph of the Gaia mission in the last 5 years. Prof. Zwitter is also the project scientist of the Radial Velocity Experiment (RAVE) which is currently collecting spectra in the same wavelength interval and at a similar resolution to that foreseen for Gaia. More information about the group can be found at www.fiz.uni-lj.si/astro.

The appointment will initially be for two years. The starting date is negotiable, with a preferred starting date around September 2007.

Requirements: Experience with analysis of astronomical spectroscopic and/or spectrophotometric data and a strong research record are a clear advantage.

Address for applications: Prof. Tomaz Zwitter (tomaz.zwitter@fmf.uni-lj.si, with cc to lennart@astro.lu.se). Please indicate in the subject header of the e-mail: "Application for ELSA position #13".

Deadline: There is no specific deadline for applications to this position. The application review process will start on 16 April 2007 and will continue until the position is filled. Thus, applications received after this date may still be considered. Closed for applications.

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Position #14 (postdoc): Point-Spread Function modelling for pixel-level simulations (GEPI [Galaxies, Etoiles, Physique et Instrumentation] Department, Observatoire de Paris, Meudon, France)

Description: Postdoctoral research position for work on the modelling of the Point Spread Function (PSF) for high accuracy astrometry space missions, with application to Gaia. The aim is to incorporate the detailed instrument models developed around Europe by the Gaia Teams into a single set optimised software to be used for the simulation of the astrometric, photometric and spectrometric instruments of Gaia. The final software will be included in the pixel level data generator developed at Paris. Specific implementations will concern charge transfer inefficiency, CCD defects, rotation of the CCDs, optimisation of the convolution of the PSFs with shape, velocity, colour of the observed objects, in particular for extended or moving targets.

The successful applicant will work in the GEPI Gaia Team, under the supervision of Carine Babusiaux and Frédéric Arenou, in close collaboration with the Gaia teams at Torino, Barcelona, Lisboa, Lund, Cambridge, and Leiden. A detailed description of the position is available at http://wwwhip.obspm.fr/gaia/.

The starting date for this position is negotiable, but should be no later than September 2007.

Requirements: Strong academic training or experience in signal/image processing, experience with instrumental and astronomical data,  experience in software programming.

Address for applications: Dr. Catherine Turon (catherine.turon@obspm.fr, with cc to lennart@astro.lu.se). Please indicate in the subject header of the e-mail: "Application for ELSA position #14".

Deadline: The deadline for receipt of applications is 9 May 2007. However, the deadline may be extended if a sufficient number of qualified applications have not been received by that date. Please consult this web page for possible updates. Closed for applications.

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