Radio Astronomer - JRID31686

Submission Dates
Archive Date: 
September 1, 2008
Deadline to Apply for Job: 
August 30, 2008
Job Details
Job Category: 
Institution/Company Name: 
Smithsonian Astrophysical Observatory
Institution Classification/Type: 
Submission Address for Resumes/CVs
Attention To: 
Recruiter 456, MS-17,
Smithsonian Astrophysical Observatory
Street Address Line 1: 
60 Garden St
Zip/Postal Code: 
Job Announcement Text: 

Radio Astronomer
Federal, GS-1330-12
Hilo, HI
$57,709 - $75,025 - Plus 25% Locality/differential pay

The Smithsonian Astrophysical Observatory invites applications from highly qualified individuals for the position of Radio Astronomer for the Submillimeter Array (SMA). This position is based in Hilo, HI. The SMA is a collaborative effort between the Smithsonian Astrophysical Observatory (SAO) and the Academia Sinica Institute of Astronomy and Astrophysics (ASIAA) of Taiwan. It is the world's first submillimeter interferometer, and is designed for observations in the major atmospheric windows from 180 GHz to 900 GHz. SAO and ASIAA are currently adding receivers to include the 320 - 420 GHz frequency range, which will enable dual-polarized operation near 350 GHz. Developments underway include a doubling of the array bandwidth for single-receiver operation; upgrades to 650 GHz receiver sensitivity; extension of current polarimetry capabilities; and the addition of a second set of 650 GHz receivers for dual-polarized operation across this band. Looking forward, the SMA group is extremely interested in improving the sensitivity of the SMA at all wavelengths and assessing scientific opportunities enabled by enhancements to the SMA, such as extending interferometric observations down to 200 microns.

Successful candidates must possess advanced knowledge of physics and/or astronomy as evidenced by a PhD in a relevant area or by comparable professional experience; and a strong understanding of interferometers with "hands on" experience related to instrumental effects on array performance. This experience may have been gained through at least two year's postdoctoral research involving radio interferometry at the instrument level; knowledge and experience in advanced aperture synthesis techniques and spectroscopy; demonstrated experience in using modern computer techniques for the acquisition, analysis and interpretation of radio-astronomical imaging observations, including the use of software such as IDL, MIR, AIPS and MIRIAD; the ability to communicate effectively and to work both independently and as an integral member of a diverse team of scientists, engineers and technical staff; and experience with and skill in presenting scientific results to scientific meetings and seminars and in the preparation of scientific papers for publication. In addition the selectee will conduct astronomical research by identifying, defining and selecting specific areas of interest and determining the most fruitful path for investigations.

High altitude physical examination prior to appointment is required. US citizenship is required. We offer a full benefits package. A recruitment bonus may be paid. Relocation costs will not be paid.

The Smithsonian Astrophysical Observatory is an EEO/Affirmative Action Employer, and encourages women and minorities to apply.

Please reference Job Posting #28-23 and send your CV, bibliography,
a statement of proposed research and three professional letters of reference to Recruiter 456, MS-17, Smithsonian Astrophysical Observatory, 60 Garden Street, Cambridge, MA 02138 not later than 30 August 2008. Further details and instructions for applying can be found at