Applications are invited for a postdoctoral position at the Department of Physics & Astronomy at the University of Texas at San Antonio starting December 1 2012 or as soon as possible thereafter. The post-doc work primarily with Dr. Chris Packham on observational studies of active galactic nuclei (AGN) and their host galaxies. The successful applicant will contribute to an on-going research program to use near-IR and especially mid-IR data to examine the torus around AGN with a view to probe the effect of activity on the torus, host galaxy, and classification type. An examination of evolutionary links to activity is also planned.
The primary research program is executed in collaboration with instrument builders, observational astronomers, and modelers, based in the US, Spain, Mexico, UK, Japan, and other countries. We hold regular meetings to coordinate existing time allocations as well as future time bids, and the successful applicant will be expected to attend both these meetings and assist in observations. The observations make use of Gemini, MMT, and the GranTeCan, using facility and visitor class instruments, at 1-25um. Some of the instruments have been developed in part by Chris Packham, and so we have guaranteed time or privileged access to them. Through this access, a joint ESO-GTC committee awarded an additional 200 hours of time on the GranTeCan, meaning over 300 hours of observing time is already allocated to this project. The successful applicant is expected to plan and carry out observations related to this project, lead the effort of analyzing the data, help in the modeling, and publish the results.
The secondary project is to work with Dr. Eric Schlegel on accretion disks of interacting binaries at ~20% to give the successful applicant access to a second research direction. Within the overall subject of disks, the detailed contribution may be decided between the successful applicant and Dr. Schlegel and range from observations to numerical simulations.
The successful applicant should have some experience in IR data reduction and modeling, but direct experience in IR observations of the AGN/torus is not required, but is strongly preferred. Applicants should have a PhD in astronomy or physics on arrival. The appointment will be for an initial period of two years, with renewal for a third year contingent upon satisfactory progress and funding.
To apply, email a single PDF containing (1) a cover letter, (2) a CV, including a list of publications, and (3) a brief (2 page) research statement. Please provide the name and email address of three persons who can provide a letter of recommendation. A review of applications will begin on December 1, 2012. Potential applicants who would like more information about the position are encouraged to contact Dr. Packham by e-mail.