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Job Details

Requisition Number 16-0294
Post Date 10/12/2016
Title Post Doctoral
City Baltimore
State MD

The Space Telescope Science Institute (STScI) invites applications for multiple postdoctoral positions in observational exoplanet studies.  The exoplanetary community at STScI includes almost 30 scientists in a diverse and dynamic combination of senior research staff, postdocs, and undergraduate/graduate students, with leading expertise in high-contrast imaging observations of exoplanets and disks, high-contrast instrumentation development, exoplanet transit studies, and planet characterization and atmosphere modeling. There are currently needs in four related areas of work:


1) Laboratory instrumentation development of very high-contrast coronagraphy and wavefront control for future large segmented telescopes in space, working on our HICAT testbed in the Makidon Optics Laboratory at STScI. (Lead: Rémi Soummer)

2) Imaging studies of exoplanets and debris disks using James Webb Space Telescope (JWST) Guaranteed
Time Observations (GTO), including preparations of observations, data analysis and modeling, and assessment of performance and best observing strategies early in the JWST mission. (Leads: Marshall Perrin, Laurent Pueyo)

3) Exoplanet atmosphere characterization and retrievals using transiting observations from the Hubble
Space Telescope (HST) and JWST GTO, including preparations of observations, data analysis and modeling, and assessment of performance and best observing strategies early in the JWST mission. (Lead: Nikole Lewis)

4) Planning high-contrast imaging of exoplanets with the WFIRST Coronagraph Instrument as part of one of the WFIRST Science Investigation Teams for CGI, including analysis of simulated coronagraph data and atmospheric retrievals for detected planets. (Lead: Nikole Lewis)

Applicants should indicate which area(s) of work they are applying for specifically.  Depending on interests and expertise of the candidate, positions covering a combination of the projects above might be considered.


Applicants should have obtained by the starting date a Ph.D. in astronomy, optics, or a related field. The start date of the appointment is flexible; earlier dates are preferred. The appointment is for two years, with a possible renewal for a third year. Applicants are requested to complete an on-line application: and attach ONE PDF document  in the “resume upload” section including the following materials: curriculum vitae, list of publications, and a brief statement of current and future research interests. Please include 16-0294 in the file name.

Please also arrange to have three letters of reference sent to

Completed applications received by January 1, 2017 will receive full consideration. Questions regarding this position are welcome and may be directed to Remi Soummer (, Nikole Lewis (

AURA, as a leader in the astronomical community, is committed to diversity and inclusion. AURA develops and supports programs that advance our organizational commitment to diversity, broaden participation, and encourage the advancement of diversity throughout the astronomical scientific workforce. Learn more at

As a recipient of U.S. Government funding, AURA is considered a government contractor and is subject to Equal Employment Opportunity and Affirmative Action regulations. As an Equal Opportunity and Affirmative Action Employer, AURA and all of the centers, do not discriminate based on race, sex, color, age, religion, national origin, sexual orientation, gender identity/gender identity expression, lawful political affiliations, veteran status, disability, and/or any other legally protected status under applicable federal, state, and local equal opportunity laws. The statements below as well as the requests for self-identification are required pursuant to these regulations. We encourage your participation in meeting these federal reporting requirements which are included for protection and to assist us in our record keeping and reporting. Your responses are kept strictly confidential.

STScI sees the diversity of our staff as a strategic priority in our desire to create a first-rate scientific community. We reflect that deep commitment in strongly encouraging women, minorities, veterans and disabled individuals to apply for these opportunities.

Veterans, disabled individuals or wounded warriors needing assistance with the employment process can contact us at EOE/AA/M/F/D/V Voted to the Baltimore Magazine Hall of Fame in 2015 – Top 25 Places to Work in Baltimore.

Included Benefits: Salaries and benefits are commensurate with those of AURA member universities. Included Benefits: -Medical, dental, prescription, and vision -Vacation: Up to 5 weeks of paid vacation a year -Sick Leave: Up to 12 sick days a year -Paid Holidays: 7 regular holidays and 3 personal holidays -Employer-sponsored Retirement Plan: direct company contribution -Employee Voluntary Retirement Savings Plan -Flexible Work Schedules -Telecommuting Options Available -Free Parking -Flexible Spending Accounts -Employee Assistance Program -Company-paid Life, Short-term Disability, and Long-term Disability.



  • Equal Opportunity Employer/Protected Veterans/Individuals with Disabilities.
  • Please view Equal Employment Opportunity Posters provided by OFCCP here.
  • The contractor will not discharge or in any other manner discriminate against employees or applicants because they have inquired about, discussed, or disclosed their own pay or the pay of another employee or applicant. However, employees who have access to the compensation information of other employees or applicants as a part of their essential job functions cannot disclose the pay of other employees or applicants to individuals who do not otherwise have access to compensation information, unless the disclosure is (a) in response to a formal complaint or charge, (b) in furtherance of an investigation, proceeding, hearing, or action, including an investigation conducted by the employer, or (c) consistent with the contractor's legal duty to furnish information.
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