Browse Open Jobs | Search Open Jobs | Edit Your Profile | View Submitted Applications

Job Details


Requisition Number 16-0265
Post Date 9/23/2016
Title Science Fellow
City La Serena
Description The National Optical Astronomy Observatory (NOAO) invites applications for a postdoctoral fellowship position based in La Serena, Chile within its NOAO South division. NOAO is the US national center for ground-based OIR astronomy. Its fundamental mission is to enable discovery by providing public access to world-class telescopes, instruments, data products, and data services. Further information can be found in the NOAO Strategic Plan [http://www.noao.edu/dir/strategic_plan/NOAO_Strategic_Plan2016.pdf].

The ideal candidate will be: (a) an observational astronomer with an interest in learning about, astronomical instrumentation and instrument support; and (b) strongly motivated to engage in research related to wide field imaging surveys and their follow-up using, wide field imaging, optical and/or infrared imaging spectroscopy. Familiarity with modern observatory operations and/or data processing and analysis with large datasets will also be favorably considered in the selection process. Chilean nationals with recently awarded doctorate degrees are particularly encouraged to apply.

This NOAO postdoctoral fellowship position provides 50% time for individual research. The successful candidate will be expected to develop an active research career at NOAO, particularly capitalizing on the research opportunities offered by the observational facilities and data services we operate and/or the data products we serve. A modest annual research budget for conference travel, etc. is provided. In addition, NOAO provides funding for desktop computing and page charges. The other 50% will assigned to functional activity within NOAO South. Every effort will be made to align the scientist’s functional duties with his or her research interests. The fellowship has a duration of three years subject to satisfactory performance, and renewable for a fourth in meritorious cases.

As part of the NOAO mission, NOAO South operates the Cerro Tololo Inter-American Observatory (CTIO) Blanco 4-m telescope and the Southern Astrophysical Research (SOAR) 4.1-m telescope (on behalf of the SOAR Partnership). NOAO South observation facilities are co-located with the Large Synoptic Survey Telescope (LSST, currently under construction) and the Gemini South 8.2-m telescope as well as large collection of 1-m class telescopes. Across this telescope suite, instrumentation is available for ultra-wide-field optical imaging, near-IR imaging, narrow-field high-order and ground-layer adaptive optics imaging, moderate resolution optical and near-IR imaging, and (soon) echelle spectroscopy (at both 4-m and 8-m class). Several of the 1-m class telescopes are optimized for time-domain exploration and characterization. NOAO South scientists have access for research to this entire complex. In addition, NOAO South scientists are deeply engaged in the Dark Energy Survey (DES) and have access to its rich, multi-band, ultra-wide field images and object catalogs. NOAO scientists based in La Serena are also participating in the Dark Energy Spectroscopic Instrument (DESI) project being developed for the Mayall 4m telescope in Arizona. Applicants are encouraged to engage with the DESI imaging surveys DECaLS and MzLS in support of DESI and for their own research interests. DECaLS (DECam Legacy Survey) is a 9000 square degree survey of the equatorial sky in grz and MzLS (Mayall z band Legacy Survey) covers 5000 square degrees in the northern sky.

Looking towards 2020 and beyond, NOAO South scientists in collaboration with their LSST and NOAO scientific colleagues in Arizona are actively involved in developing roadmaps to maximize capabilities for LSST follow-up science, including demonstration programs using existing facilities and other datasets, and in preparing the community to fully exploit LSST. At the request of NSF, NOAO is currently developing a concept for the Community Science Center, which would support LSST users in maximizing science from the LSST provided data sets.

The NOAO South scientific staff (9 astronomers, scientists, and postdoctoral fellows) works in a variety of research topics, including large-scale structure, supernovae, stellar populations, galaxy evolution, stellar evolution, star formation, interstellar medium, and active galaxies. Our scientists work within a larger La Serena based community including Gemini, SOAR, and soon LSST, scientific staff in the same office complex. We also have links with astronomers from Las Campanas Observatory and the University of La Serena, which is in the process of expanding its astronomy program, located close by. There is significant scientific collaboration between NOAO scientists in Arizona and Chile. As an international observatory, we benefit from a continuous flow of visiting astronomers passing through the facilities.

The position is based at the AURA campus in La Serena, Chile. The working language is English. Staff members have excellent benefits and living conditions, an overseas cost-of-living adjustment, an educational stipend for dependent children, support for Spanish lessons, international health care benefits, and an annual travel benefit. There are several excellent schools in La Serena, including a few with bilingual education. The city of La Serena is a major seaside tourist destination in South America, with a mild climate somewhat similar to Southern California.

As an Equal Opportunity and Affirmative Action Employer, AURA does not discriminate because of race, sex, color, age, religion, national origin, sexual orientation, gender identity, lawful political affiliations, veteran status, disability, and/or any other legally protected status under applicable federal, state, and local equal opportunity laws.

Applications received prior to December 15, 2016 are assured of full consideration; however, the position will remain open until filled. Applications may be submitted on line (preferred) at http://www.noao.edu/jobs.php, or sent by e-mail to employment@aura-astronomy.org. Applications should include a curriculum vita; a statement of current professional interests and how those interests align with the NOAO program. Letters from three (3) references are requested. When applying for this position please refer to the job title and job number above. Please name any attachments with the following format: xxxLastnameDocname.

Further details can be obtained from the Associate Director for NOAO-South, Dr. Steve Heathcote, director@ctio.noao.edu. Profiles of some NOAO Scientists and Astronomers have been posted on the NOAO web pages, to give potential applicants a snapshot of what these positions involve and what it is like to work at NOAO.
Please see http://www.noao.edu/staffdir/profiles.php

NOAO is operated by the Association of Universities for Research in Astronomy (AURA) under a cooperative agreement with the National Science Foundation (NSF).
Requirements The ideal candidate will be: (a) an observational astronomer with an interest in learning about, astronomical instrumentation and instrument support; and (b) strongly motivated to engage in research related to wide field imaging surveys and their follow-up using, wide field imaging, optical and/or infrared imaging spectroscopy. Familiarity with modern observatory operations and/or data processing and analysis with large datasets will also be favorably considered in the selection process.
  • 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.
Apply On-line
Send This Job to a Friend