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Job Details

Requisition Number 16-0345
Post Date 12/2/2016
Title Postdoctoral Research Associate
City Boulder
State CO

The Association of Universities for Research in Astronomy, Inc. (AURA) operates several observatory centers (including the National Optical Astronomy Observatory, the National Solar Observatory, Large Synoptic Survey Telescope and the Gemini Observatory) in the United States and Chile under cooperative agreements with the National Science Foundation.

The National Solar Observatory (NSO) has two openings for a Postdoctoral Research Associate within the Daniel K. Inouye Solar Telescope (DKIST) program. The DKIST is under construction on Maui, Hawaii on the summit of Haleakala. Organizationally, staff are located at the National Solar Observatory headquarters, housed on the Boulder campus of the University of Colorado, co-located with the National Optical Astronomy Observatories at the University of Arizona in Tucson, and in offices in Maui.

The successful candidates are expected to collaborate with NSO staff and/or community based scientists to perform DKIST related research. He/She will perform research projects that strengthen the DKIST science program and contribute to prepare for DKIST science operations. Specific focus areas might include observations at current NSO or partner facilities, data analysis and interpretation, simulations of DKIST observations, development of data analysis tools, imaging and image reconstruction, and instrumentation development. Of particular interest is research that involves:

  • development or application of spectropolarimetry, analysis of spectropolarimetric data, inversions or forward modeling of spectropolarimetric observations.
  • coronal imaging, spectroscopy and polarimetry.

The positions are for duration of 3 years.  The positions are nominally located in Boulder. However, depending on the candidate’s research interests and plans collaboration with NSO’s Maui based science staff may be preferential in which case the position can be located on Maui.

Essential Functions:

  • Develops detailed research plan with DKIST related science objectives.
  • Performs research activities according to general guidance provided by supervisor.
  • Carries out scientific research investigations in collaboration with other members of the scientific staff.
  • Performs such other duties as may be assigned.
  • PhD degree (in astrophysics, physics, or a closely related field)
  • Knowledge of solar astronomy
  • Experience using IDL, Python or similar data-handling programs
  • Experience in analyzing data from ground-based instruments desirable
  • Knowledge of spectropolarimetry desirable

Please submit CV and a summary of planned research to your application. Please name any attachments with the following format: 16-0345LastnameDocname. Application documents that are not uploaded as part of the application may be sent to

NSO will begin reviewing applications the week of Jan 16th, 2017 and will continue to accept applications until the position is filled. Please be sure to submit a completed application along with supporting documents by no later than Monday, January 16th 2017 to be considered in the first review.

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 does 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 recordkeeping and reporting. Your responses are kept strictly confidential.

  • 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. 41 CFR 60-1.35(c)
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