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Research Associate

University of Leicester - Physics and Astronomy

Location: Leicester
Salary: £38,205 per annum (pro rata). Grade 7
Hours: Full Time
Contract Type: Fixed-Term/Contract
Placed On: 21st February 2024
Closes: 18th March 2024
Job Ref: 9580

Vacancy terms: Full time, Two fixed term positions (one for 30 months, one for 36 months)

Hours per week: 37.5

Advert closes midnight on: 18 Mar 2024

About the role

Applications are invited for a postdoctoral research associate position to study the nature of astrophysical transients as part of the Leverhulme Trust funded project “Magnetic fields in cosmic explosions”. The project explores the character of relativistic jets and the emission they give rise to in transients such as gamma-ray bursts, fast radio bursts and tidal disruption events, exploiting new parameter space opening both in the radio regime and at high energies.

We are currently seeking to recruit two Research Associates to join our project team:

Role A: The Research Associate will take a leading role in the radio astronomy aspects of the project. Duties may include, but are not limited to, analysis, modelling and interpretation of transient and related data, observation planning and multi-facility coordination. Of particular interest is the LOFAR rapid response mode for triggered imaging of fast transients, and the upcoming commissioning of LOFAR 2.0 providing unique opportunities for radio transient science. We expect this position to be fixed-term for 36 months.

Role B: The Research Associate will take a leading role in the broadband transient follow-up aspects of the project. Duties may include, but are not limited to, analysis, modelling and interpretation of transient and related data, observation planning and multi-facility coordination. Of particular interest is the combination of wide-field optical capability, ground-based deep imaging and spectroscopy and high energy missions targeting the transient Universe, to build a broadband picture of transients and their environments. We expect this position to be fixed-term for 30 months.

The Research Associate will be embedded in an international project team led by Associate Professor Rhaana Starling, and the position comes with funds for travel and resources. The position will be hosted within the Astrophysics group and the Institute for Space at the University of Leicester, whose research activities encompass observation, theory and instrumentation. Our group has long-standing leadership in the field of high energy astrophysical transients, exploiting a wide range of data from ground- and space-based facilities, including involvement in the Swift, SVOM and Einstein Probe satellite missions, and multiple transient follow-up campaigns upon which this project builds.

About you

Candidates should have completed all requirements for a PhD in astronomy or other relevant discipline before taking up the post. They should also have demonstrable research experience and skills relevant to the area of astrophysical transients and/or observational astronomy.

Alongside a CV and cover letter, within your application please include a list of your publications as well as a statement of research interests (no longer than 3 pages).

Additional information

Informal enquiries can be directed to the project PI Dr. Rhaana Starling (rlcs1@leicester.ac.uk).

We anticipate that shortlisted candidate will be contacted by the end of March, with interviews held mid April 2024 after the Easter break.

The University of Leicester has been changing the world, and changing people’s lives, for 100 years. When you join us, you’ll become part of a community of Citizens of Change, which includes not only our staff and our current students but also thousands of Leicester graduates around the world.

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