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Postdoctoral Fellowship - Gravitational Wave

Las Cumbres Observatory (LCO) invites applications for a postdoctoral position in gravitational wave (GW) follow up and supernova science. Our global, robotic telescope network was custom-built specifically for time-domain astronomy providing instant access to the sky in both hemispheres making it uniquely capable for transient astronomy. The successful applicant will join the GW and supernova group at LCO led by D. Andrew Howell and Curtis McCully. We are seeking scientists who are interested in advancing an independent research program and leading the development of software tools for both the LCO group and the community. Community projects for GW coordination include Treasure Map and the Kafka-based messaging systems Hopskotch and HERMES. Applicants are encouraged to highlight projects that demonstrate collaboration, software skills, and scientific excellence as well as synergy with the LCO GW group and projects.

LCO postdoctoral scholars have the opportunity to gain experience from a wide variety of sources including LCO's professional software team, the astro group at University of California Santa Barbara and collaborations at Kavli Institute for Theoretical Physics. LCO participates in an active outreach program, co-sponsoring Astronomy on Tap in Santa Barbara with UCSB. Postdocs can also look to Wayne Rosing, the LCO founder and a former Vice President at Google, for both his technical expertise and life experience in management at Apple, Sun, and Google.

LCO leads astronomy in enabling responsive, real-time observing programs for a wide range of science, and in making our advanced observing software tools available to the wider community. For example, LCO's TOM Toolkit package is designed to make it easy for anyone to take advantage of these tools, and customize a powerful observing database system to their own science goals. The successful candidate will have the opportunity to enhance their software skills in partnership with our professional software engineers.

Applicants should submit the following via email to lcojobs@lco.global by January 20, 2023.

  • cover letter
  • curriculum vitae
  • research statement of no more than 3 pages
  • names and contact information for three referees that will provide letters of reference

Applicants should arrange for three letters of reference to be emailed separately to lcojobs@lco.global by January 20, 2023.

All documents (except letters) should be in a single PDF file. Applications received by the deadline will receive full consideration. A Ph.D. in astronomy, physics, or a related discipline is required by the start of employment.

The appointment starts in September 2023 or earlier. It is for a two-year term plus a third-year extension based on satisfactory performance and mutual agreement. The postdoc will be an employee of LCO and the position comes with an employee benefits package and support for travel, page charges, and computing. The starting salary is $70,000. LCO is a private, non-profit corporation, based in Santa Barbara, California.

LCO is an Equal Opportunity employer. Our mission is to advance our understanding of the universe through science and education with our unique global telescope network. Our culture is global by nature and inclusive by design. Our people come from diverse backgrounds and cultures. This diversity powers innovation and drives the success of our mission. We are actively engaged in building and nurturing a culture that is welcoming and inclusive of people from diverse backgrounds with regard to race, color, sex, age, national origin, religion, sexual orientation, gender identity and/or expression, disability and veteran status.

We are committed to providing reasonable accommodations for qualified individuals with disabilities and disabled veterans in our job application procedures. Please let us know if you would like to disclose a need for accommodation in connection with the recruitment and hiring process. If so, you may contact us at the email below.

COVID-19 Policy: COVID-19 vaccination is required for office-based staff.

Please direct any questions to lcojobs@lco.global.